Mountain Rescue Teams

December 23, 2010

Over the next few weeks the Mountain Rescue Teams of England, Wales and Scotland are liable to be extremely busy. They will be called out in sub zero temperatures at all hours of the day and night to rescue some lost soul on the mountains; hopefully successfully but often just to pick up a body. The team members are all volunteers; they are not professionals and they receive no central funding. They collect money in a variety of ways, some more enjoyable than others (no-one really wants to be shaking a tin outside Asda on a cold Saturday morning) but they do it without fuss because it is part of the ‘job’.

Why do they do it? Each member will have their own reasons; a sense of honour and pride usually mixed with a sense of comradeship, the bettering of their own performance in the hills as there is a multitude of training that is organised in such areas as First Aid, rope work and stretcher bearing and the simple pleasure being out on the hills doing what they like best. I have already said that as a rule the individuals have no desire to be paid although they would like some extra support on the fund raising side, they also see no reason (and I completely agree here) with the need for anyone venturing on the hills to have insurance as they do in France but there are a few rules/requests that they would always ask of people venturing out on the mountain.

  • Particularly in bad weather, be prepared. In particular make sure that in winter months you carry a whistle and a torch as well as the obvious requirement of warm clothes.
  • Make sure that one of the party is experienced and genuinally knows his/her way round the area you are walking in.
  • Make sure that you leave a route description somewhere.
  • Make sure any call to the Mountain Rescue Teams is genuine; horror stories abound of people being late for dinner parties or wanting to know the cricket score!
  • Finally if you are rescued a donation to that Mountain Rescue Team would just seem the correct thing to do! Many do but many do not, just remember they are a voluntary organisation.

If you do want to contribute please either contact the local team directly or through the link which will take you to the centralised Mountain Rescue Council


It have just had a thoroughly superb summer, autumn and winter building where2walk in to what I hope will become the most comprehensive free to use walking service in the North of England. I have added 150 walks to date on to the site (all completed, photographed and written by myself this year) in what Wainwright would term a labour of love. There is much more to come in 2011. Happy New Year.

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