Date of Incident

08/02/2020

Country

Wales

Route

Incident

The weather on the summits was challenging with heavy cloud, hail, and 90mph+ winds making walking upright difficult. Our group met a couple who were struggling to find their chosen route off the mountain. After attempting to help them, they decided they unsaid where their path was and went in the opposite direction to pick it up. We continued on our route and upon returning to our car as the light failed, we found the couple coming down our initial route. They had been unable to find their path which would have taken them down the other side of the mountain to their car as it transpired they had no means of navigation whatsoever. Despite knowing the the storm was coming in and the likely condition, they had made an active decision to do this and said this had happened before. We ended up driving them the 10 miles back to their car so they were not stranded.

Lessons

We should have investigated their issue more fully when on the mountain and not assumed they had a way to navigate. They were otherwise well equipped and confident and given the conditions we all were focused more on the descent. As a group we will probably ask more questions in future.

The lack of any method of navigation in the middle of a strong storm is a lesson this couple clearly need to learn despite their luck holding out this far.

Activity

Winter walking

When

Descending

Injury

No injury

Causes

Navigation Error, Inadequate equipment, clothing or footwear, Adverse Weather

Anonymous?

Yes

Reported By

Observer

Wearing Helmets?

Rescue Services Involved?

For more advice and guidance on good practices visit BMC skills

All reports are self-submitted and have not been edited by the BMC in any way, so please keep an open mind regarding the lessons and causes of each incident or near-miss.