A Scottish mountain has claimed the life of a fourth climber in less than two months.

The man died yesterday in Coire an-t Sneachda on Cairn Gorm after falling 500ft. He was solo climbing near the top of Crotched Gully when the fall happened yesterday afternoon.

Cairngorm Mountain Rescue Team (MRT) reached the man, who has not yet been named, within 90 minutes of being called out. He was airlifted by RAF helicopter to Raigmore Hospital, Inverness, but pronounced dead by medical staff.

He was in a party of six attempting solo climbs in the corrie. Cairngorm MRT leader John Allen said: “He was tackling a snow cornice at the top of the route leading to the Cairn Gorm plateau, about 4,000ft up the mountain.

“We don’t know exactly what happened but, possibly, the snow gave way  under his feet.

“It is a 1,500ft climb and he was tackling a technical part when he fell about 500ft to the corrie floor.”

One posting on the UKClimbing forum says the corniced top of the route looked dreadful. It was very layered and loose and the climb was harder than the stated grade.

26-year-old climber Neil Batchelor died in December after a fall in Aladdin’s Couloir and fellow Aberdeen University Lairig Climbing Club members Richard Hardy and Graeme Cooper died after being caught overnight in severe weather after tackling a route in Coire an-t Sneachda in November.