Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team tell of toughest test to date

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Fraser Campbell who was a keen climber sadly fell to his death last Friday on Ben Nevis
Fraser Campbell, who was a keen climber, sadly fell to his death last Friday on Ben Nevis

THE FAMILY of a man who died after an accident on Ben Nevis last weekend have spoken of their loss.

Fraser Campbell had been climbing the mountain with a male companion when he fell around 6pm on October 7.

Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team (LMRT) members responded to the emergency but, despite embarking on what they described as one of the most difficult and technical rescues, were unable to save the 52-year-old.

A joint statement released by his fiancé, Julie, and family members said: ‘Fraser was my fiancé, my best friend and a wonderful daddy to our little girl. He was kind and had a bubbly personality.

‘He radiated enthusiasm and positivity in everything he did, but especially for his two great passions: his family and climbing. He was dearly loved and he will be sorely missed by all his family and friends.’

Mr Campbell got into trouble around 150 to 200 metres from the top of the climb, according to LMRT, whose rescue mission started at 6.15pm and did not finish until 6am the following morning.

The team said: ‘The rescue involved a 600-metre lower down the route, the longest climb in the UK, to get one of the climbers who was stuck on belay. The lower from the very summit of Ben Nevis was down the whole of the Orion face with the rescuer and casualty hanging free for long sections of the lower before reaching the safer ground at the base of Observatory Gully.

‘The summit team, supported by RAF MRT, located the surviving climber and lowered him to the base of Observatory Gully and walked out to a point where the rescue helicopter could bring him back to Fort William.

‘The second climber unfortunately had died from his injuries and another team had to climb up from base to locate the casualty and then lower him down the route to where he could be recovered to Fort William by the helicopter.’

LMRT said the terrain on Ben Nevis is very dangerous as the top of the route is very loose this year and made a public thank you via Facebook to all members who took part on the rescue at considerable risk to themselves to save a life.