The walkers descended towards Llyn Arran from Mynydd Moel. Photo: Jeremy Bolwell CC-BY-SA-2.0

The walkers descended towards Llyn Arran from Mynydd Moel. Photo: Jeremy Bolwell CC-BY-SA-2.0

A group of walkers lost on Cadair Idris in Snowdonia risked a more serious incident when they followed a gully on their descent.

Aberdyfi Search and Rescue Team was alerted about 5.30pm on Saturday after a call for help from six people on the mountain.

The party included three walkers attempting a charity circuit of the Welsh Three Peaks. Two independent groups of three met up when they became lost in low cloud and rain on the summit plateau of Mynydd Moel, on the north-eastern edge of the massif.

A rescue team spokesperson said: “The groups joined forces to find a way off, but ended up coming down on the north rather than the south side of the mountain.

“Finding themselves on the edge of darkness, wet cold and tired, and having run off the edge of their map, they called for help.

“Team volunteers moved up the hill to meet the group, provide extra lighting, and escort them down to the roadhead.”

Team member Graham O’Hanlon, who attended the rescue, said: “So far as could be told from their narrative, the group descended the stream gully from Mynydd Moel directly to Llyn Arran, which would have been difficult, unstable and steep.

“I suspect they might not have attempted that route if they could have seen what they were getting into. With an unstable scree slope, and everyone feeling cold and tired, it could easily have become a much more serious incident.

“People can enjoy the mountains in all manner of conditions, but in poor weather and low cloud it is very easy to become disorientated, and it makes those key map and compass skills all the more important in order to stay safe and get the most from the day.”

The rescue operation ended shortly after 8pm.

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