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Lochaber Mountain Rescue, one of Scotland’s busiest teams, has recorded their quietest year for rescues since 2007

Lochaber MRT cover a wide area from Ardgour across to the Mamores in the south, Fort Augustus to Knoydart in the north, and across to Rum and the Small Isles. However, most of the time they’re up on Ben Nevis helping out walkers and climbers. Ben Nevis is one of the busiest mountains in the UK with an estimated 100-200,000 ascents a year.

In 2017, however, Lochaber MRT saw a lower number of call-outs than usual. In a post on their Facebook page, they listed some stats for the year past:

  • 78 call-outs
  • 3,400 volunteer person hours
  • 82 people rescued
  • 5 fatalities
  • 3 mountaineering incidents
  • 2 medical incidents

Why the lower number of call-outs? “The low number of call outs was probably due to there being virtually no winter last year, with snow in short supply until well into February. This lack of snow resulted in snow disappearing completely from Ben Nevis for the first time in 11 years.”

The team added: “At the moment we are getting significant falls of snow above 600 metres which is resulting in considerable avalanche risk above 900 metres on the Ben.

“If you are heading out, be prepared and check weather and avalanche report.”

The team is celebrating the 50th anniversary of its formal inauguration in 2018 and will be holding a number of events to celebrate this achievement throughout the year.

Image © Alex Roddie