Rescuers at the scene on Y Garn. Photo: OVMRO

Rescuers at the scene on Y Garn. Photo: OVMRO

An injured walker was rescued from a Snowdonia mountain in an operation lasting eight hours.

A Coastguard helicopter made repeated attempts to reach the man on Y Garn but was thwarted by weather conditions.

Ogwen Valley Mountain Rescue Organisation was alerted by police shortly after midday on Saturday. The walker called for help when he was unable to continue on the east ridge of the mountain.

Chris Lloyd of the rescue team said: “The well equipped hillwalker, in his late 50s and from the south coast, had been scrambling by himself up the ridge. The low cloud had made the rocks slippery. As he almost gained the top of the final tower, he slipped and fell 15ft (5m) or so, fortunately landing on a ledge but unfortunately incurring a serious injury to one ankle and foot.

“The low cloud prevented any hope of a rescue by helicopter. A team of 10 or so members walked up to the top of the ridge via the back of Cwm Idwal.

“From there, a team member was lowered on a rope system to assess and treat the casualty. The two were then raised to good ground. The casualty attempted to walk but this was not feasible due to the pain.

“He was loaded and packaged onto the stretcher then moved downhill. It was hoped that the helicopter could return if the rescue party could get below cloud level. When the opportunity arose, the cloud level dropped before the helicopter could get there and the mission was aborted.”

Rescuers decided to use the route descending the grassy slopes down to Nant Peris rather than down the steep and rocky footpath at the back of Cwm Idwal.

Mr Lloyd said: “Additional mountain rescue personnel were deployed by Llanberis MRT who had just returned from another rescue on Snowdon.

“One more attempt was made by the helicopter, but alas the location and the lack of any wind made this a risky operation and so again, it was aborted.

“Finally, eight hours after the initial call, the casualty was at the roadside. He was taken to Ysbyty Gwynedd for treatment.

“Ogwen members thank the Coastguard’s helicopter crew for their multiple attempts to lift the casualty and Llanberis team members for their prompt assistance and the loan of their wheel which fits on the stretcher.”

The incident was the Ogwen Valley team’s ninth of the year.

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