The two men became cragfast on Sharp Edge. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

The two men became cragfast on Sharp Edge. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

A rescue helicopter had to back off from winching two men stuck on a Lake District ridge for fear of blowing them from their precarious position with the rotor blades’ downwash.

The two 19-year-old men called for help from Sharp Edge on Blencathra after they got cragfast when they deviated from the main route.

Keswick Mountain Rescue Team was alerted about 2.05pm on Saturday.

A team spokesperson said: “The team responded swiftly, with the first vehicle setting off for the nearest access at Mousthwaite Comb within 12 minutes, and a second following shortly afterwards. Other members went direct.

“Because of the condition of the most vulnerable casualty, a Coastguard helicopter was requested to see if the casualties could be winched direct from their position. But once on scene, it was decided that the downwash from the aircraft might dislodge them, so the helicopter lifted a group of team members with rigging kit to the top of Blencathra, and two team members down-climbed on steep ground, and assisted the casualties to safety.”

The two men were checked over by the rescuers and made their way home unharmed.

The three-hour rescue involved 15 volunteers from Keswick MRT.

Sharp Edge is an accident blackspot for the Keswick team, and has been the scene of several fatal falls.

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