The fall could have ended in tragedy, but the man stopped himself after toppling 25 feet by bracing himself against a small crevice in the canyon, according to a park service statement.
After a rescue effort involving more than a dozen park service employees, the man was able to walk away. A helicopter transported the man for treatment of a possible hip injury.
“According to staff on scene, the man was extremely lucky. The crevice and the angle of his body during the fall helped the man stop at the top of a 200 foot drop,” the park service statement reads. “A fall just inches to the left may have resulted in a fatality as the canyon wall is mostly steep loose rock.”
Another tourist saw the man fall and called 911. Two park rangers threw the man a rope that they then tied to a sign and tree at the top of the canyon.
A Yellowstone rescuer descended to where the man was and brought him back to safety by using a pulley system, according to NPS.
Yellowstone’s Grand Canyon, 20 miles long, ranges in depth from 800 to 1,200 feet and in width from 1,500 to 4,000 feet.