Rescuers stretchered the injured walker for more than 4km. Photo: Northumberland NPMRT

Rescuers stretchered the injured walker for more than 4km. Photo: Northumberland NPMRT

Rescuers carried an injured walker more than 4km in heavy rain and wind in an operation in the Cheviots that lasted almost eight hours.

The man, in his early 20s, injured his lower leg while ascending Auchope Cairn on Monday evening.

Team members from both Northumberland National Park and North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Teams responded to the alert, while members of the Border Search and Rescue Unit joined the operation from the Scottish side of the Border Ridge.

A Northumberland NPMRT spokesperson said: “A small group of team members reached the casualty very early on thanks to help from the College Valley Estate Manager and his [utility vehicle].

“They accessed the Border Ridge via the Auchope Shelter while members from BSARU accessed the ridge from the Scottish side near Cocklawfoot.

“The casualty was confirmed as being close to Score Head. Conditions by now were very bad; the wind had picked up and heavy rain was falling. With temperatures dropping it became vital that the teams reached the casualty.

“The hasty team reached the casualty and his father just before 11pm and one of the team medics quickly assessed the casualty while other team members re-warmed his father and got everyone into a group shelter.

“By this stage, other team members were deploying from Mounthooly with additional rescue kit and were fortunate again to have help from the College Valley Estate’s UTV.”

Colleagues from BSARU joined the other two teams’ members and provided a stretcher. The spokesperson said: “It was decided to move the casualty to the border gate on Clennell Street. The 4½km stretcher carry was very difficult in the strong winds and heavy rain.

“The casualty and father were transported down from the Border Ridge in mountain rescue team vehicles and brought back to Mounthooly by the Northumberland national park team.

“We would like to wish the walker a speedy recovery and to offer our thanks to the estate manager from the College Valley Estate who provided invaluable assistance; and to the Mounthooly Hostel for providing a bed for the very weary walkers.”

The rescue lasted 7¾ hours, with volunteers standing down in the early hours of Tuesday. The incident involved 16 Northumberland team members and 12 from BSARU.

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