Walker finally rescued in nine-hour mission after almost dying from hypothermia

Rescuers spent nine hours trying to save the stranded walker who had caught pneumonia in hail, heavy rain, and wind atop a mountain in Snowdonia, Wales

Rescuers on the scene where a walker with pneumonia was saved after a nine hour mission
Rescuers on the scene where a walker with pneumonia was saved after a nine hour mission

A walker who almost died from hypothermia was eventually saved after a nine-hour rescue mission to find them on Snowdonia over the weekend.

The walker had succumbed to pneumonia and their life was in danger before they were eventually found near the mountain’s summit.

Mountain rescue teams were alerted to a group of four walkers who were in trouble on Cadair Idris on Saturday afternoon, North Wales Live reports .

Other members of their party had turned back due to poor visibility combined with strong winds, heavy rain and hail storms but the four pushed on.

However, one of them began to succumb to hypothermia near the summit of the mountain and was left unable to continue.

The walkers called for emergency assistance at this point and as their rescue was being planned, a team member who happened to be out and about stumbled across them.

The walker being winched onto the Rescue 936 helicopter


South Snowdonia Search and Rescue Team)

The lone savior from Aberdyfi Search and Rescue helped look after the man as he slipped in and out of consciousness.

Whilst they did so, they directed the other three lost walkers back to the shelter at the summit where they could sit out the worst of the weather.

Despite having pinpointed their position, the Rescue 936 helicopter could not reach them due to the weather.

Only a second group of rescuers, backed by stretcher parties made their way on-foot up the Pony Path towards the stranded man.

After arriving at the scene, team members assessed the first casualty and prepared him for the stretcher party following on shortly behind.

Meanwhile, having been given dry warm clothes, food and warm drinks, the other three walkers were collected from the summit hut and reunited with the first casualty for the journey off the mountain.

After emerging from the cloud-base first, the three walkers were transported down the rest of the way by the search and rescue helicopter which then returned to pick up the walker with hypothermia, who was in an increasingly critical condition.

The rescue involved 31 volunteers and a search and rescue helicopter


South Snowdonia Search and Rescue Team)

After being winched onboard, the casualty was flown to Ysbyty Gwynedd for further assessment and treatment. All team members were safely accounted for and headed home at 1:00am, South Snowdonia Search and Rescue Team said.

In total, 31 mountain rescue volunteers spent around 270 hours performing the rescue.

Team spokesperson Graham O’Hanlon said: “The mountains can be enjoyed in a wide variety of conditions with the right equipment skills and preparation, and with the flexibility to alter plans when conditions are not as expected.

“Hypothermia is not just a condition brought on by snow and ice, and this group was evidently not equipped for the well forecast conditions they encountered. The choices made that day came close to costing one person, and possibly all four, their lives.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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