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Skye Mountain Rescue Team
c/o Portree Police Station
Somerled Square
Portree
Isle Of Skye
IV51 9EH

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Call Outs/Incidents 2011

In 2011 the team dealt with a total of 31 incidents. Dealing with these incidents involved a total of 1,326 voluntary hours.

Traditionally the Team doesn't have many winter call outs but, in recent years these have become more common. This trend continued in 2011 with our first call out of the year being on 7th January when we were called out to a cragfast walker on Bla Bheinn.

We had solitary call outs in February and March. To an injured walker on Sgurr Alasdair and to a party who had become lost/cragfast on Sron Dearg.

However, as usual our busy season began in April and we were called out fairly regularly until things quietened down in early September.

In May we dealt with 2 multiple casualty incidents. The first of which was on the Isle of Rum and the second on the Cioch Direct route, Sron na Ciche. This incident saw the first of our two fatalities in 2011.

We were back at Cioch Direct again in June when a young climber fell whilst leading and suffered a head injury. Thankfully he made a full recovery.

July was fairly quiet with only 3 relatively minor incidents that didn't require much team input.

In August we dealt with a man who had badly broken his lower leg whilst ascending the footpath to the Old Man of Storr. It was a reminder that serious injury can occur in any location and after the smallest of slips or stumbles.

We finished the year off with a large search effort for a local man who had got lost in the hills of Trotternish. Unfortunately his body was found on the second day of the search. The team is grateful for the assistance we received from the local community in Uig both during the incident and for the generous donation collect for the team afterwards.

Blaven in winter

1. Incident: Cragfast
Location: South Top of Bla Bheinn
Date: 7 January 2011 Time: 1500
No of Team Members Involved: 17
Total Team Hours: 110.5

A poorly equipped and inexperienced 31 year old male had climbed to the South Top of Bla Bheinn which, was in full winter condition. He began making his descent but, due to his lack of crampons and ice axe soon got into difficulties.

He raised the alarm via mobile phone. The team was airlifted to approx 480m up Slat Bheinn as darkness fell. The team headed for the South Top carrying out a route search along the way. At approx 2030 the clag cleared allowing the subject to use the light from his mobile to alert R137 to his position on the South Top. He was winched onboard and taken to Broadford Hospital with suspected mild hypothermia. R137 then returned to take the team off the hill.

2. Incident: Injured Walker
Location: The Great Stone Shoot, Sgurr Alasdair
Date: 28 February 2011 Time: 2000
No of Team Members Involved: 19 Total Team Hours: 38

A party of 5 had climbed Sgurr Alasdair from Glenbrittle. On the descent of the Stone Shoot a female member of the party started suffering pain from her hip. She was given Diclofenic (pain relief) by another member of the party who was a doctor but, was still only moving very slowly. When they failed to return to Glenbrittle by 2000 the alarm was raised.

As the team arrived at Glenbrittle a head torch was spotted descending the Eas Mor path. This turned out to be a member of the party who had run ahead to advise that the injured walker and the remainder were on their way down. The team stoodby until all members of the party were safely off the hill.

3. Incident: Lost/Cragfast
Location: Sron Dearg, Sgurr Dearg
Date: 1 March 2011 Time: 1900
No of Team Members Involved: 7 Total Team Hours: 42

The mist came in on a party of 4 males, part of a larger group all visiting Glenbrittle, as they descended Sron Dearg. They became disorientated/cragfast and called for assistance. Prior to the Team's arrival, 2 other, more experienced, members of their party ascended from Glenbrittle in an attempt to locate them and help them down.

The team and a SARDA dog and handler ascended Sron Dearg. The SARDA dog initially located the party of 4 and then later the other 2 who were now higher up the hill having missed their friends in the mist on their ascent. All were then walked off the hill safely.

Am Bastier

4. Incident: Lost/Cragfast
Location: Am Bastier
Date: 10 April 2011 Time: 1700
No of Team Members Involved: 16
Total Team Hours: 74

A male hillwalker was unable to find his way back down from the summit of Am Bastier after the mist thickened whilst he was on the summit. He tried several times to retrace his route of ascent, which avoided the Bad Step, and kept ending up on the wrong ledge/terrace. He decided discretion was the better part of valour and called for assistance via mobile phone, giving a GPS grid reference.

7 team members ascended to the location given, found the subject and assisted him of the hill. The remainder of the team stoodby at Sligachan base until the subject had been located.

5. Incident: Injured Walker
Location: Sgurr Alasdair
Date: 29 April 2011 Time: 0955
No of Team Members Involved: 7 Total Team Hours: 21

The casualty was struck by a falling rock whilst on Sgurr Alasdair with 2 companions. He suffered a severed finger and the other members of his party called for assistance by mobile phone.

The team stoodby at Glenbrittle Base while R100 evacuated the casualty.

6. Incident: Missing Persons/False Alarm
Location: Bealach Coir an Lochain
Date: 4 May 2011 Time: 0930
No of Team Members Involved: 19
Total Team Hours: 76

A party of climbers was reported missing/overdue after it was thought that they had failed to return to Glenbrittle campsite the previous evening.

The team and R100 were called out. R100 found the party safe and well near Bealach Coir an Lochain. It turned out that they had in fact returned late to the campsite and left early the next morning.

Training with 'Cuillin' the SARDA dog

7. Incident: Injured Walker
Location: Great Stone Shoot, Sgurr Alasdair
Date: 7 May 2011 Time: 1500
No of Team Members Involved: 8
Total Team Hours: 16

The casualty, an experienced hillwalker, got his foot stuck between two rocks while descending the upper section of the Great Stone Shoot. His momentum carried him forwarded, breaking his ankle. Two of the other four people in his party descended to Glenbrittle to raise the alarm.

R100 was able to deal with the incident as the team stoodby at Glenbrittle.

8. Incident: Local Incident
Location: Loch Bracadale
Date: 9 May 2011 Time: 2120
No of Team Members Involved: 3 Total Team Hours: 3

2 people in a sailing dinghy on Loch Bracadale, Skye set of an ELB when their dinghy capsized. With daylight failing at the time the alarm was raised, the coastguard asked 3 specific members of the team members, whose homes overlooked Loch Bracadale, to investigate.

The 3 team members duly obliged and R100 was scrambled and was able to rescue the sailors.

The Storr

9. Incident: Ill Walker
Location: The Storr, Trotternish
Date: 11 May 2011 Time: 1705
No of Team Members Involved: 14
Total Team Hours: 42

The casualty and his companion had set off to do Hartaval and The Storr that morning. The casualty was not feeling well all day and moving very slowly. He became incoherent on the descent from Hartaval and his companion tried to get him down the hill. With the casualty's condition continuing to deteriorate his companion called for assistance by mobile phone. R100 attended and was able to evacuate the casualty from the hill with the MRT on standby at the Old Man of Storr carpark.

The casualty's companion decided to walk off the hill so that he could collect his car from the carpark and 2 MRT members ascended to meet him and escort him off the hill.

10. Incident: Broken Ankle
Location: Beinn an Sguirr, Waternish
Date: 14 May 2011 Time: 1805
No of Team Members Involved: 9 Total Team Hours: 50

The casualty and her husband were walking along the footpath that runs along the top of the cliffs of Beinn an Sguirr. While descending a wet grassy slope the casualty slipped and fell over, breaking her right ankle.

The casualty was packaged and evacuated by stretcher to the nearest forest road and the team's landrover. The casualty was then taken out of the forest by landrover. Once out of the forest she was transferred to a waiting ambulance.

Training with the RAF at Loch Coruisk

11. Incident: Dislodged Boulder
Location: Bealach Barcaval, Isle of Rum
Date: 17 May 2011 Time: 1600
No of Team Members Involved: 20
Total Team Hours: 220

As a school party were ascending a boulderfield, one of the party dislodged a boulder which struck 2 14 year old girls who both suffered lower leg injuries. The 4 member strong Isle of Rum Coastguard team attended and began moving the more seriously injured casualty down the hill to try to get below the cloudbase for R100 pick up. Worsening weather made this too difficult with their limited numbers and MRT assistance was called.

20 MRT were deployed to Rum from Glenbrittle by R100 and both casualties were carried down the hill for evacuation by R100. After taking the casualties to hospital R100 refuelled and returned to take the MRT back to Glenbrittle.

12. Incident: Lost/Cragfast
Location: Sgurr Dearg
Date: 17 May 2011 Time: 1730
No of Team Members Involved: 4 Total Team Hours: 21

In rapidly worsening weather the subject couldn't find his way of the top of Sgurr Dearg. After several attempts to find a safe route down he lost confidence and climbed back up to the top and called for assistance. The subject, a German national, didn't have very good English and communication was initially very difficult until one of the MRT member's wife, also a German national, was pressed into action to translate. The subject then gave a detailed description of his location. 2 MRT ascended to where they thought this was, searching the ridge as they went. He was found relatively quickly and walked off the hill.

2 other MRT and 2 police dog handlers stoodby at Glenbrittle base in case they were required.

13. Incident: Party of 2 Overdue/Lost
Location: Rubh an Dunain, Minginish
Date: 17 May 2011 Time: 1800
No of Team Members Involved: 2 Total Team Hours: 6

The subjects had gone for a walk to Rubh an Dunain in good weather conditions and without a map and compass. The weather worsened dramatically with low cloud, wind and rain. They couldn't find their way back and wasted a lot of time and energy going around in circles. They eventually decided to follow the coast and did so until they came to a difficult section. They were very tired by this point and as they had found some shelter in a recess decided to sit it out until morning. Not long after they spotted R100 coming in from Rum to pick up more MRT (see incident 11 above). They climbed up the hill from the shore so that the helicopter could see them more easily. In doing so they came across the track back to Glenbrittle and recognising it from their outward route began making their way back.

R100 spotted them on their return to Rum and passed on info on their position to Glenbrittle base. 2 MRT drove out the track in the team landrover, picked up the subjects and took them back to Glenbrittle were they were re-united with their family members who had raised the alarm.

Training on the Cioch

14. Incident: Dislodged Boulder
Location: Cioch Direct, Sron na Ciche,
Date: 31 May 2011 Time: 1530
No of Team Members Involved: 24
Total Team Hours: 126

Whilst climbing the 3rd pitch of the Cioch Direct route on Sron na Ciche a male climber pulled up on a large block which dislodged and fell down the route. This resulted in the male climber falling and suffering a broken leg, the block then struck his partner, fatally injuring her. As the block continued down the route it struck and injured another pair of climbers on the 2nd pitch below. A further pair of climbers, who had just completed the first pitch, was able to take evasive action.

Another pair of climbers who had been on the Cioch West route traversed over to help. They made the first climber safe, then, by way of assisted abseil, got the pair of injured climbers, who had been on the 2nd pitch, off the cliff.

R100 & R137 attended and all the casualties were eventually evacuated from the hill.

15. Incident: Broken Ankle
Location: Bealach a Mhaim
Date: 31 May 2011 Time: 1840
No of Team Members Involved: 1 Total Team Hours: 1

The casualty stumbled and sprained his ankle when descending Fionn Choire. He descended as far as he could, assisted by other members of his party. They came across an MRT member's wife who called her husband who was guiding nearby. He descended to the casualty's position and after assessing the injury requested that one of the 2 helicopters in the area on the Cioch Direct shout (see incident 14 above) evacuate him from the hill. R137 carried out the evacuation.

16. Incident: Injured Walker
Location: Meall na Suiramach, Trotternish Ridge
Date: 6 June 2011 Time: 0800
No of Team Members Involved: 12 Total Team Hours: 42

The casualtys knee became sore the previous day as he was ascending Meall na Suiramach. He pitched his tent on the summit as planned and hoped his knee would be OK for the descent in the morning. It wasn't and he called for assistance by mobile phone. The team located him at the grid reference he had given and stretcher carried him off the hill.

Coastguard R100

17. Incident: Twisted Knee
Location: Garbh Bheinn
Date: 14 June 2011 Time: 1800
No of Team Members Involved: 21
Total Team Hours: 42

The casualty stumbled and twisted her knee high up on Garbh Bheinn. R100 picked up 3 MRT at Sligachan and attended. The casualty was packaged and evacuated to Broadford hospital.

18. Incident: Panic Attack
Location:, Tourist Route to Sgurr na Gillean by Allt Dearg Beag
Date: 14 June 2011 Time: 1930
No of Team Members Involved: 2 Total Team Hours: 1

MRT on standby at Sligachan base (Garbh Bheinn shout) were advised that a male walker had suffered an angina attack on or, near the summit of Sgurr nan Gillean and was now descending slowly. 2 MRT set of with appropriate medicines but, met the walker after 20 minutes making good progress. It would appear that he had suffered a panic attack from which he had now recovered. The 2 MRT walked off the hill with him.

19. Incident: Paragliding Accident
Location: Dunvegan
Date: 14 June 2011 Time: 1700
No of Team Members Involved: 1 Total Team Hours: 1

Following a paragliding accident at the given location the ambulance and fire crews were called. They dealt with the casualty but, his 'chute was stuck up in two large trees. An MRT who lives locally was asked to assist and he climbed up the trees and recovered the 'chute.

MRCofS winter rigging course

20. Incident: Broken Ankle
Location: Sgurr nan Eag
Date: 18 June 2011 Time: 1230
No of Team Members Involved: 16
Total Team Hours: 40

The casualty fell a short distance breaking his ankle and called for assistance via mobile phone. A MRT member on the same hill went to the scene and working with R100's winchman/medic packaged the casualty and evacuated him from the hill.

21. Incident: Party of 2 Overdue
Location: Dubh Slabs, Sgurr Dubh Mor
Date: 19 June 2011 Time: 2000
No of Team Members Involved: 2 Total Team Hours: 8

The party were reported overdue having failed to return to Glenbrittle from an outing to do the Dubh Slabs.

The team leader and another MRT member stoodby at Glenbrittle and gave directions by mobile phone to the party until they eventually got back to Glenbrittle safe and well.

22. Incident: Party of 3 Overdue
Location: Eastern Gully, Sron na Ciche
Date: 20 June 2011 Time: 0000
No of Team Members Involved: 2 Total Team Hours: 4

The subjects were reported overdue from a day's climbing on Cioch Buttress. They became very tired after completing their day's climbing and struggled to find their way out off Eastern Gully. The team leader and another MRT member stoodby at Glenbrittle until the party returned to Glenbrittle safe and well.

23. Incident: Lead Climber Fall
Location: Cioch Direct, Sron na Ciche
Date: 20 June 2011 Time: 1635
No of Team Members Involved: 14 Total Team Hours: 31.5

The casualty was leading the second pitch of Cioch Direct when he slipped and fell. His protection ripped out and he fell approx 20M before coming to rest hanging unconscious from the rope. He was lowered to the foot of the route by his seconder and another climber from the same Climbing Club group. He regained conciousness after about 10 minutes. It would appear that his helmet saved him from more serious injury.

R100 picked up 3 MRT at Glenbrittle base and took them to the given location. Along with R100's winchman/medic they packaged the casualty for evacuation to Broadford Hospital. The remaining MRT stoodby at Glenbrittle base.

Glamaig and the Red Cuillin

24. Incident: Fell Running Fall
Location: Glamaig
Date: 9 July 2011 Time: 1600
No of Team Members Involved: 14
Total Team Hours: 14

The casualty was competing in the Glamaig Hill Race. He fell whilst descending a steep scree slope, dislocating his shoulder. The team was alerted by mobile telephone and 14 team members attended at Sligachan base. By the time the MRT had got to Sligachan the casualty had already been assisted off the hill by other competitors. At this point the team and R100, which was on route, were stood down.

25. Incident: Lost
Location: Coir a Tairneilair
Date: 18 July 2011 Time: 1300
No of Team Members Involved: 8 Total Team Hours: 24

The subject went off route while trying to reach Sligachan from Glenbrittle, ending up in Coir a Tairneilear. He called for assistance on mobile phone and 8 MRT attended and began a search for him.

Before the MRT could locate him he came across another party in Coire a Tairneilear who gave him correct directions and walked off the hill with him.

26. Incident: Suspected Broken Ankle
Location: Strath na Creitheach
Date: 23 July 2011 Time: 1630
No of Team Members Involved: 9 Total Team Hours: 9

The casualty and her husband were walking from Camusunary to Sligachan when she stumbled injuring her ankle. She tried to continue but couldn't and her husband called for assistance by mobile phone, giving a GPS grid reference for their location.

R100 was tasked and dealt with the incident while the MRT stoodby at Sligachan base.

Beinn na Caillich (Broadford)

27. Incident: Cragfast/False Alarm
Location: Coire Reidh, Beinn na Caillich (Broadford)
Date: 2 August 2011 Time: 1745
No of Team Members Involved: 4
Total Team Hours: 8

The subject got into difficulty while descend the steep and craggy corrie headwall becoming cragfast. With the cloud base dropping he called for assistance on his mobile phone.

R100 attended and picked up 3 MRT members from the end of the Old Corry road. An air search located the subject on the moor below the cloudbase and he was evacuated from the hill.

The subject had managed to descend safely to the moor where he tried to contact the police to let them know he was now OK but there was no mobile signal available lower down the hill.

28. Incident: Party Overdue/False Alarm
Location: Loch Coruisk
Date: 7 August 2011 Time: 2000
No of Team Members Involved: 2 Total Team Hours: 6

The 2 subjects were staying at the Glenbrittle Youth Hostel. The warden reported them overdue when they failed to return from a walk to Loch Coruisk.

The team was alerted and initial enquiries lead to the couple eventually being traced to the Old Inn in Carbost.

29. Incident: Broken Leg
Location: Old Man of Storr Footpath, Trotternish
Date: 26 August 2011 Time: 1650
No of Team Members Involved: 9 Total Team Hours: 27

The casualty slipped while ascending a stepped section of the footpath leading through the forestry plantation to the Old Man of Storr.

He suffered a serious lower leg fracture. He was given pain relief, his broken leg was immobilised and he was placed in a casualty bag. He was then carried off the hill to a waiting ambulance.

Inaccessible Pinnacle, Sgurr Dearg

30. Incident: Cragfast
Location: Inaccessible Pinnacle, Sgurr Dearg
Date: 1 September 2011 Time: 1230
No of Team Members Involved: 2
Total Team Hours: 1

The subject became cragfast while attempting to ascend the "short side" of the In-Pin.

2 MRT members, working as mountain guides, were leading parties on the "long side" at the time. Once they had made their parties safe they went to the subject's assistance and safely got him off the route.

31. Incident: Person Overdue/Fatality
Location: Ben Gorm, Trotternish
Date: 4 October 2011 Time: 1715
No of Team Members Involved: 17 Total Team Hours: 221

The casualty had gone for a walk in the hills above his home on Sunday, 02/10/11 and failed to return. The alarm was raised when he failed to turn up for work on Tuesday, 04/10/11. An initial search of the local area was carried out on the evening of 04/10/11.

The search resumed on 05/10/11. Later that day, the team was informed that the casualty had been seen walking along the public road between Uig and Staffin. The search area was extended to include the hills above the road. The casualty's body was found at the location given above. The casualty's body was then removed from the hillside by the team with assistance from a local crofter and his ATV.

Total Voluntary Hours (Not including travelling time) 1,326 Hours

Call outs in previous years

For a list of call outs in 2015..........  Please click here.

For a list of call outs in 2014..........  Please click here.

For a list of call outs in 2013..........  Please click here.

For a list of call outs in 2012..........  Please click here.

For a list of call outs in 2010..........  Please click here.

For a list of call outs in 2009..........  Please click here.

For a list of call outs in 2008..........  Please click here.

For a list of call outs in 2007..........  Please click here.

Skye MRT members awaiting a winch from RAF rescue R137.

Skye MRT members awaiting a winch from RAF rescue R137 in Coire a' Bhaisteir.