updated 4/25/2008 7:22:22 PM ET 2008-04-25T23:22:22

A Pennsylvania man survived a 500-foot fall into an abandoned strip mine early Friday, police said.

Coaldale Police Chief Timothy Delaney says 23-year-old Nathan Bowman of Tamaqua was trespassing on coal-company property when he slipped and fell into the cavernous Springdale Pit early Friday.

He says Bowman survived a sheer drop onto a rock ledge hundreds of feet down.

Delaney says rescuers used a basket to lift Bowman out. Bowman is in serious condition at St. Luke's Hospital in Bethlehem.

Delaney says Bowman is obviously extremely lucky to be alive.

Coaldale is 70 miles northwest of Philadelphia.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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