The woman, who was not immediately identified, was thought to be hiking alone when she fell around 2 p.m. Friday, District Ranger Ray O'Neil said this morning.
"She was a third of the way from Scout Lookout to the top," the ranger said. "We're still looking into it at this point. It just sounds like a terrible accident."
Weather apparently wasn't a factor, as it was sunny with temperatures in the 50s and low 60s, he said. There were others in the area who saw her fall, and they were interviewed by rangers.
While there are chains along some sections of the trail that hikers can hold onto as they go up and down, the woman was thought to be in an area where there were no chains, said the ranger.
“It’s roughly in the saddle area. When you go from Scout Lookout you go up just a little bit and then you go down just a little bit before you go on the big ascent to the top," he said. More details were expected later today.
The last hiker to die along the route was a California woman who fell in August.