Climber with injured ankle rescued after 30 hours on rain-sodden Twelve Bens

Climber with injured ankle rescued after 30 hours on rain-sodden Twelve Bens

A man has been rescued from the Twelve Bens mountains in Co Galway after spending the night stranded in heavy rain with a sprained ankle.

The man, in his late 40s/early 50s, made a 999 call from his mobile phone last night at about 8pm to alert emergency services that he was injured and unable to make his way down the mountain outside Recess, Co Galway.

It is understood he began the climb yesterday morning. He let emergency services know where he believed he was on the mountain, and a rescue team of eight was scrambled.

The team could not find the man at the location, and after some time searching for him, they set up portable shelters on the mountain to get a couple of hours rest before resuming their search.

Climber with injured ankle rescued after 30 hours on rain-sodden Twelve Bens

They subsequently learned the man’s phone battery had run out at 4.30am.

Visibility had dropped to about 20 metres and, although it was not cold, with temperatures in the teens all night, there was heavy rain which hampered the search. Rivers in the area were swollen with water.

The rescue team eventually found the man about one kilometre away and he was brought down on a stretcher at around 5pm today.

Climber with injured ankle rescued after 30 hours on rain-sodden Twelve Bens

“He was out there up to 30 hours... The injured ankle looks like a bad sprain,” said Ronan Concannon of Galway Mountain Rescue.

“Considering he spent the night on the side of the mountain with an injured ankle and no shelter, he’s doing very well. He was able to walk for a little bit on the ankle, but not enough to make his way down the mountain.

“He was put into the ambulance, where he sat up and thanked everyone for all their work in finding him. He’s cold and tired and wet.”

It is not yet known whether the man was an experienced climber.


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