Mountain Rescue implore visitors to Snowdon to know what they're letting themselves in for.
Last Saturday (17th September) Llanberis Mountain Rescue Team attended no fewer than five separate call-outs to Wales's highest peak. Over the course of the weekend, during which Llanberis MRT spent a grand total of 11 hours on Snowdon, six individuals had to be extracted from the notorious Crib Goch ridge - two on the Saturday, and a further four on the Sunday.
“Basically there are walkers who decide to go up Crib Goch and then get terrified as it is a very tricky route" said George Jones, secretary of Llanberis MRT. “People should really do their homework before they come on the mountain – Crib Goch is not the Watkin Path. We get them down by ropes and a great deal of encouragement, and we were also assisted by the 936 coastguard rescue helicopter throughout the day on Saturday, but there was too much low cloud on Sunday for them to land.”
This latest manic weekend follows a record number of callouts for Llanberis MRT last month. Throughout August 2016 they responded to 43 incidents - up from the previous record of 34 in August 2015. With call-outs having increased by a staggering 400% over the last decade, mountain rescue volunteers are calling the current situation "unsustainable".
"Our frustration as a team is that people don’t prepare for the mountain" said George Jones. “They don’t find out which route is best for them and then get into difficulties. Some would agree there needs to be signs warning people of the dangers on Snowdon, but we believe as a team people should take responsibility for themselves. So many people don’t have the right clothing – there are still instances of people wearing flip-flops walking up Snowdon. We say the same message over and over again but still people don’t listen.”
To find out more about the work that the volunteers at Llanberis Mountain Rescue Team do or to donate to the running of the team visit www.llanberismountainrescue.co.uk