The climber fell while tackling a gully on Glyder Fach. Photo: Alan Butterworth CC-BY-SA-2.0

The climber fell while tackling a gully on Glyder Fach. Photo: Alan Butterworth CC-BY-SA-2.0

A climber was rescued after two walkers heard his cries for help as he crawled from a Snowdonia crag after falling.

The local man was soloing a gully on the main cliff of Glyder Fach on Friday when he fell a considerable distance, suffering chest and leg injuries.

He had no mobile phone reception, and began crawling from the base of the crag above Cwm Bochlwyd while shouting for help.

Chris Lloyd of the Ogwen Valley Mountain Rescue Organisation said: “Fortunately, his calls were heard by a couple walking in the cwm. They made the 999 call before heading across to locate the casualty.”

The rescue team requested the help of RAF Valley’s Sea King search and rescue helicopter.

Mr Lloyd said: “22 Squadron flew in shortly afterwards and successfully winched the casualty aboard and flew him to hospital in Bangor whilst a stretchered party gathered at Oggie Base.”

The callout was one of four for the Ogwen Valley team over the past few days after a quiet January.

On Thursday evening, two men from Chester and Crewe and their two dogs called for help. They had walked from Ogwen, over the Carneddau with the intention of staying the night in Dulyn Bothy.

Mr Lloyd said: “However, as the descent to the bothy was to be in deep soft snow, they decided to continue north. Unfortunately, one of the men aggravated an old ankle injury which slowed progress.

“Shortly after 8pm, they called for assistance. Two Ogwen MRT Land Rovers were driven up the snow-covered track up the Drum. The two men were found making good progress down the track. The party of two men and two dogs were brought down and taken to Oggie Base for supper, hot drinks and a warm up.”

Mr Lloyd said he was checking out the ‘regular’ path up the North Ridge of Tryfan when the team received another call for help from a young couple who were stuck and frightened on the mountain’s West Face.

He said: “The two, in their 20s and from Worcestershire, had set off up the North Ridge at about 10.30am. They had downloaded the footpath as described in a popular magazine and set off.

“They successfully located the steep ‘waterfall’ gully to the East of Milestone Buttress and made their way up following the snow covered ‘trail’. Finally, they reached the plateau just below the North Tower.

“They realised that by wearing just summer boots, the snow-covered steps up the steep North Tower might just be a step too far. They wisely decided to turn back. Unfortunately, their navigation was not so good on their descent and they found themselves of the steep crags of the West Face.

“They made the 999 call to inform the MRT that they were cragfast, but would try to regain the North Ridge.

“Being the only team member on the North Ridge of Tryfan, I was told to descend to just above the Milestone Buttress, where the couple were reportedly stuck. Having arrived just above the buttress, I was asked to climb back up as they were probably west of the North Tower.

“Passing four Oxford University Mountaineering Club students, I asked if they had seen or heard the couple. Alas, no, so I climbed further. Fortunately for all, the two managed to regain the North Ridge path and meet up with the party of four, who escorted them safely from the mountain.

“Eventually, information came up the mountain, that the two were below me and that I should descend once more. The four students, who were well equipped for a fine winter’s day on the mountains, did a good job of guiding the two to safety in true mountaineering spirit.”

As the incident was concluding at about 3.30pm, the team received information that a party of four were cragfast on a steep snow-covered slope near Crib Lem on the north side of Carnedd Dafydd. “As team members gathered at Oggie Base and amassed a pile of gear for a possible rope rescue, a plan was hatched for a two-pronged assault,” Mr Lloyd said.

“A ground party would climb the ridge behind Oggie Base and walk to Carnedd Dafydd with ropes, spare helmets and harnesses, torches and flasks of hot drinks. A similarly equipped party would await a possible uplift by helicopter as daylight was becoming limited.

“Just like the first incident, some passing climbers walking down the ridge, were able to lower a rope and bring the four to safety, before the team members were deployed.”

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