Highlands & Islands

Climber dies after fall on Aonach Beag near Fort William

Aonach Beag Image copyright Geograph
Image caption The climber died while descending the summit of Aonach Beag near Fort William

A man has died after falling during a climb on one of the UK's highest mountains.

Police said the climber fell while descending from the summit of the 1.234m (4,048ft) Aonach Beag near Fort William on Thursday afternoon.

He was with another man who managed to contact Lochaber Mountain Rescue. The pair were rescued but the climber who fell later died of his injuries.

He is not thought to be from the local area.

The death is the first reported on a Scottish mountain this year but follows a number of high-profile rescue operations in the Highlands since 1 January.

'Fatal injuries'

A Police Scotland spokesman said: "Police in Lochaber can confirm that late yesterday afternoon emergency services were alerted to a male walker who had fallen whilst descending from the summit of Aonach Beag.

"Lochaber mountain rescue team were contacted and with the assistance of rescue helicopter 951 the man was rescued from the mountain, however, very sadly, he had sustained fatal injuries.

"Lochaber police are liaising with the man's next of kin and a report is being prepared for the procurator fiscal.

"The man was walking with a male companion who was not injured. Police would like to thank partner agencies for their assistance during the incident."

A series of rescue operations in the first few days of the New Year have prompted a warning from mountaineering leaders.

Shaun Roberts, of the mountain centre Glenmore Lodge, said anyone taking to the hills needs to "ask questions of themselves" before setting off.

On Wednesday, two people were airlifted from Ben Nevis after one of them injured an ankle.

Before that, a couple and their dog were rescued after spending the night in a bivvy bag in the Cairngorms when the weather closed in on their New Year's Day walk.

Robert and Cathy Elmer, from Leicestershire, were reported missing on Sunday when they failed to return from their walk but they were found by mountain rescue teams on Monday afternoon.

The next day, two young mountaineers were praised as "heroes" for carrying a hypothermic walker to safety from Ben Macdui - Scotland's second highest peak.

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