1989. On the 28th of February, in conditions of heavy snow cover
and in rising temperatures, a fit and well-equipped party were traversing
the Five Sisters of Kintail. In the afternoon they left the ridge and
descended into Coire Domhain. A wet slab avalanche occurred and one
of the party could not be found. Others went the entire length of Glen
Lichd to raise the alarm.
Two dog handlers
from Northern Constabulary Dog Section followed by members of Kintail
and Kinloss Mountain Rescue Teams were deployed to the avalanche site
by a helicopter from D Flight 202 Sqn Royal Air Force (complete with
initial dog search, a probe search was conducted for several hours.
of hours into the search, the dog that was still searching a little
way ahead of the search line got a scent. A pit was dug but nothing
was found. Wet avalanches trap no air and provide few pathways for a
scent to emerge. Such pathways that do exist can be long and misleading.
In the closing
hours of the day, another scent was detected. Probing revealed an object
beneath the snow and digging commenced. The casualty was found completely
buried and showing no signs of life. Flying conditions had worsened
and he was carried to Glen Lichd House and then by vehicle to Morvich.
Northern Constabulary's Dog Sergeant on his way to Kintail by helicopter
Kinloss Leader and Kintail's base operator record information about
operation formed the greater part of Episode 11 'Avalanche' of the ITV
series 'Rescue' which followed the work of D Flight 202 Sqn Royal Air
Force for one year from early 1988 to early 1989. All the images shown
here are from that episode and are shown courtesy of Paul Berriff.
computer is capable of playing video clips from 'youtube' then click
on the logo below to view a clip from the 'Rescue' episode. (Approximate minimum system requirements:
500kbps broadband connection, Pentium III/AMD Duron or better, Win98SE/MacOS9 or better,