Here in the Lake District we are currently enjoying some of the best winter conditions on the fells for about a decade. Persistent cold conditions over the last few weeks, along with regular snowfall has meant that many winter climbing routes are in great condition. Walking on the tops is also magical with miles and miles of white snow and ice to enjoy.
However, the winter conditions have brought with them a spate of accidents, some serious and some fatal (2 fatalities today alone). Local Mountain Rescue teams around the Lake District have been inundated with emergency calls in recent days. Still many walkers are heading into the winter hills ill prepared and lacking the relevant skills.
Langdale & Ambleside Mountain Rescue Team have issued this following advise;
Prolonged winter conditions experienced so far this year have been rare in recent years, however the message is the same as always. Be prepared. Experience, appropriate equipment, and sound judgement are crucial. Ice axe, crampons, warm clothing and reliable torches are vital in current conditions. Remember as well, soft snow is exhausting to walk in, frozen snow is very slippery.
For further information on work of the LAMRT and Kendal MRT go to their websites www.lamrt.org.uk and www.kendalmrt.org.uk
Please get out in the mountains and enjoy the current wintry conditions, but always take the essential winter gear with you and make sure you know some basic winter mountaineering skills. Also spare a thought for the local Mountain Rescue Teams who are doing fantastic work totally voluntarily.
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