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Dundonnell Mountain Rescue Team warns hikers not to underestimate lingering winter dangers following spring's arrival on Ross-shire's Munros and Corbetts

By Philip Murray

There is still snow on the summit of Ben Wyvis and many other mountains.
There is still snow on the summit of Ben Wyvis and many other mountains.

SPRING may have arrived but winter’s icy grip is still a real danger on Ross-shire’s peaks, mountain rescuers have warned.

Dundonnell Mountain Rescue Team has urged walkers not to underestimate conditions, warning that there is still “significant quantities” of lying snow on many Munros.

Leader Donald Macrae said: “Especially after a night frost, snow covered slopes on the Munros and Corbetts still represent a significant hazard and we would urge hillwalkers not to put their ice axes and crampons away for the summer just yet. Additionally, cornices can remain in place well into the spring – those close to the summit of Ben Wyvis being a good example.”

Navigation skills are essential in the outdoors all year round and the Dundonnell team is just one of the many who are called out every year to assist walkers who have become lost.

“Mobile phone mapping apps and GPS units can augment but are not a substitute for the traditional map and compass,” said Mr Macrae. “In addition, good route planning, which also takes into account the fitness and experience of group members, can ensure that a day in the mountains will be memorable for the right reasons.

“Finally, even with snow still on the hills, now is the time to think about packing some sun protection in your rucksack. Heat exhaustion is an underestimated hazard in the Scottish mountains; a good sun hat and high factor sun cream should be considered essential in spring and summer - and keep hydrated too”.

Dundonnell Mountain Rescue team is a registered charity, SCO11603. It covers an area extending from the city of Inverness to Coigach, including An Teallach, Fisherfield , Affric, Mullardoch, the Fannich and Beinn Dearg ranges and Ben Wyvis.

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