Rescuers at the scene on Sharp Edge. Photo: Keswick MRT

Rescuers at the scene on Sharp Edge. Photo: Keswick MRT

Rescuers said a walker should consider buying a lottery ticket after a lucky escape when he fell on Sharp Edge.

The 61-year-old suffered only minor injuries, falling from the notorious ridge on Blencathra.

Keswick Mountain Rescue Team was alerted at 2.55pm on Tuesday when the man called for help.

A team spokesperson said he was descending the ridge after ascending Blencathra. “Having done the steep part of the scramble down the man decided that he didn’t like the look of the slab section of Sharp Edge,” the spokesperson said.

“The rock was extremely slippery in the wet and it was very exposed to the strong south-westerly wind.

“He opted to follow what looked like a path down on the north side. Not long after starting his descent the man slipped then tumbled some 15m or so down the gully but very fortunately managed to stop himself having suffered only bruising and a few cuts.

“Deeming both the ascent and descent too dangerous to attempt in the conditions he wisely called for help.”

Some Keswick team members were just completing a rescue in Whinlatter Forest, so made their way immediately to the scene and more rescuers left their base to join the operation.

The spokesperson said: “Not knowing the full extent of the man’s injuries and anticipating a possibly difficult extraction assistance was requested from Penrith MRT and also the Coastguard helicopter.

“The man was located and a rope rescue was set up from the ridge. One team member was lowered down to the man, a helmet and harness was then fitted before both were lowered down the gully to a waiting team doctor who did an assessment of the man’s injuries.

“Someone suggested the man buy a lottery ticket as he had luckily got away with relatively minor bruises and cuts. Some pain relief was given and the man was able to walk down unaided.

“Many thanks to Rescue 936 from Caernarfon and the team members from Penrith MRT.”

The incident lasted just over four hours and involved 17 Keswick MRT volunteers and four colleagues from the Penrith team.

Sharp Edge has been the scene of numerous fatalities and serious injuries when people have fallen from the grade-one scrambling route, which can be very slippery in wet conditions.

Earlier in the day, 12 Keswick team members were involved in rescuing a mountain biker who broke his ankle in Whinlatter Forest.

The 50-year-old’s bike slipped on a wet tree root and he came off his machine. A passing cyclist raised the alarm.

Rescuers were able to drive close to the scene on the northern red loop in a Land Rover. They administered pain relief to the man before stretchering him to a Forestry Commission vehicle which took him to an ambulance.

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