Five Finger Gully on Ben Nevis. Photo: Richard Webb CC-BY-SA-2.0

Five Finger Gully on Ben Nevis. Photo: Richard Webb CC-BY-SA-2.0

Four walkers were airlifted from the UK’s highest mountain after getting lost in the dark and straying perilously close to steep crags.

Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team was alerted by police after the group called for help from the summit plateau of Ben Nevis yesterday.

The walkers had no torches and attempts by the rescue team to talk them down by a safe route were unsuccessful.

A Royal Navy Sea King search and rescue helicopter from HMS Gannet in Ayrshire flew to the scene and the walkers were found near the top of Five Finger Gully on the mountain’s south-western edge.

The helicopter crew picked up the four and flew them to the rescue team’s base in Glen Nevis.

The 800m drop of Five Finger Gully is one of the rescue team’s known blackspots for accidents, with walkers passing close to its top on the main track up the 1,344m (4,409ft) mountain.

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