Two would-be mountaineers got top marks from rescuers – for doing everything wrong.
The two Wrexham men were deemed lucky to be alive after an ill prepared venture on to Crib Goch on Snowdon. They were helped down from the mountain in darkness and in deteriorating weather.
Fifteen members of the Llanberis Mountain Rescue Team (MRT) reached the two about 9pm last night. By this time, they had enlisted the help of a party of experienced hillwalkers who had ropes and mountaineering equipment.
Llanberis MRT’s Gwyn Roberts said their conduct was like a catalogue of what not to do. The two men, in their twenties, had set off to climb Crib Goch from Pen-y-pass at 1.45pm, with only three hours of daylight left. They had no torches, no compass, whistle or spare clothing. The men had no map or mobile phone.
One was wearing trainers and a lightweight waterproof jacket; the other had only a fleece.
A party of mountain walkers from Surrey gave the men their spare clothing and helped the two down the ridge until they could go no further. Emergency services were alerted and they were lowered from their position above 600m (1,970ft) by members of the Llanberis team.
Visibility had dropped to 10m (33ft) and winds were gusting up to 60mph with heavy rain.
Mr Roberts told the BBC: “We have a check-list and I don't think there was anything we ticked off that they had with them. They were completely out of their depth.
“They were extremely lucky. Had that group not come across them by pure chance, and they had struggled on their own in the dark or spent the night there, they would have been in a very serious condition.”
He urged anyone venturing into Snowdonia’s mountains to go prepared.