The rescue could be one of the last carried out by an RAF Sea King in Scotland

The rescue could be one of the last carried out by an RAF Sea King in Scotland

Rescuers have warned that Britain’s highest mountain is still in winter condition after finding a walker who went missing overnight.

Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team was joined by colleagues from the Glencoe team and members of the Joint Services Training Centre in the hunt for the missing hillgoer on Ben Nevis.

The search was suspended overnight and resumed at first light with a Sea King search and rescue helicopter from RAF Lossiemouth.

The missing walker was found in Coire Eòghainn, the fourth such incident in the corrie in recent weeks.

After the last rescue in the corrie, on the southern slopes of the mountain, Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team joked they should put up a fence on the summit to stop walkers falling into Coire Eòghainn. Today, a spokesperson said: “Obviously the fence we put up is not working so we will need to build a 4m wall all way round lip of the corrie. At least if everyone ends up in same place we can just wait at bottom of the corrie to sweep up.”

The injured walker was airlifted from Ben Nevis and flown to Belford Hospital in Fort William by the crew of the Sea King.

The Lochaber MRT spokesperson said: “Special thanks to the yellow budgie, Rescue 137, as this may be its last deployment to Lochaber in anger.

“The guys and gals have been brilliant over the years and it has been no different last night and today flying in difficult conditions. We will miss the helicopters, crews and banter.

“Thanks guys for all your assistance over the years and look forward to seeing some of you in the new shiny red and white S-92s.”

The Coastguard Sikorksy S-92 helicopters provided by Bristow are due to replace the military Sea Kings of the RAF and Royal Navy on 1 April.

Lochaber MRT warned anyone heading for Ben Nevis to go prepared for full winter conditions. “Anyone planning to go on to the Ben at moment will need ice axe, crampons, winter gear and be able to navigate.

“This takes us over 20 rescues so far this year and we still have a bit of winter still to go, so it looks like we are heading for our usual number of about 100 mountain rescues for the year.”

The spokesperson added that winter climbing conditions on Ben Nevis were still good.

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