I saw this story yesterday on Grough, but had to stop and think about it some before I posted. It’s about an unnamed 42 year-old man who has now been rescued off of Snowdon, the tallest mountain in Wales, for the second time in five months.
Standing 1085 meters (3560 feet) in height, what it lacks in altitude, Snowdon makes up for in challenge. The rocky cliffs have been a favorite amongst climbers in the U.K. for decades, and the mountain is notoriously dangerous in the winter months. In fact, as the article notes, 4 people died on the mountain over the course of 11 days last month alone.
In the case of this person, he was first found unconscious in the doorway of a building at the summit last October after spending a night out in the cold. At first he was mistaken for a pile of garbage, but then other climbers recognized that it was indeed a person, and proceeded with a rescue operation. He suffered hypothermia and could have died had he not been found. This more recent incident saw the same man falling more than 50 feet, and ending up in a pile of snow, where two trekkers found him and once again came to his aid.
Now, of course I’m all for everyone adding a little outdoor adventure to their life. But perhaps this guy should just stay inside and pick up a safer hobby. Something like Checkers or Battleship. At the very least, maybe he should stick to paved trails in an urban park or something. Getting rescued off the same mountain twice in the span of five months time is pretty impressive, and not easily accomplished.
This is just the kind of story that would typically rekindle the debate about mountain rescues and who should pay for them. Those seem to flair up every now and again when you hear stories like this one. Of course, I’m aware that many search and rescue operations are conducted by volunteers and often don’t cost the tax payer much of anything at all, but I’m in favor of charing this guy something, anything, for his rescues. I hope he bought the SAR team a pint or two at least.
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