The walker lost her way after leaving the Nine Standards

The walker lost her way after leaving the Nine Standards

A lone walker on the Coast to Coast route was rescued in a major operation involving more than 40 volunteers after she got lost on a section of the route over Nine Standards Rigg.

The woman, from America, called for help after becoming disoriented on the notorious bogs of the hill, on the north-western edge of the Yorkshire Dales national park.

Kirkby Stephen Mountain Rescue Team was called out about 9pm on Friday.

Team leader Adrian Cottrell said: “The 24-year-old had lost her bearings after leaving the Nine Standards at around 3.30pm and eventually called for help as night fell. This made finding her a real challenge.

“In that long period of time she could have walked a long way in almost any direction so we had to try to narrow that down.

“Fortunately we could speak to her on her mobile phone. Eventually we determined that she could see our blue flashing lights on the Tan Hill road and finally a search-dog handler was able to reach her.”

The woman was unhurt and was helped off the hill, with the rescue ending after five hours at about 2am.

The search involved more than 40 mountain rescuers from the Kirkby Stephen, Penrith, Swaledale and Teesdale Teams along with search dogs and handlers from the Lake District Mountain Rescue Search Dogs Association and Search and Rescue Dogs Association England.

The rescue was the culmination of a long day for the Kirkby Stephen team, who spent 12 hours on the hills that day.

Kirkby Stephen Mountain Rescue Team members stretcher the injured walker from the Cautley Spout site. Photo: Kirkby Stephen MRT

Kirkby Stephen Mountain Rescue Team members stretcher the injured walker from the Cautley Spout site. Photo: Kirkby Stephen MRT

An earlier callout involved a group of teenagers from Liverpool on a Duke of Edinburgh’s Award expedition in the Howgills. One of the group injured her knee while they were making their way from the top of the waterfalls at Cautley Spout to The Calf.

The callout came at midday when she was unable to walk and needed to be carried out on a stretcher.

The rescue was complicated by a number of factors. Mr Cottrell said: “The group had strayed from their planned course so it took much longer than we expected to find them and then there was a long and difficult extraction on the stretcher along a narrow path above Cautley Spout.

“The group did exactly as they are instructed in their training and put up a tent to keep the casualty warm and stayed there until help arrived. Communications with them by mobile phone were patchy and we ended up searching a wide area before locating them.”

The casualty was handed over to her DofE supervisors at the Cross Keys Inn at Cautley. 16 members of the Kirkby Stephen team and four from Kendal MRT had spent seven hours on the hill during the rescue.

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