The Dubhs Ridge Skye – Always wear a helmet on the Scrambles and ridges!

The Dubhs Continued

We had another break we had about another 600 feet to go to the top of Sgurr Dubh Beag. The climbing is lovely on easy angled slabs tilted at about 30 degrees and rough dry granite and a baking sun. We sat on a bit of grass and grabbed the much-needed shade and had a break I had some water and pills for my back which was getting very sore. I would see how I felt at the abseil and descend into  the An Garbh Coire a rough and wild place. l thought it was a long, day ahead in this heat and did not want to hold anyone back, though I was going okay! A couple of us were feeling the heat, it was the hottest day I have ever been out on.

The beautiful gabbro of Skye

Cooling Off

It is easy to sit and admire the views especially when it is so hot, my water was down to 1 litre and we had a long way to go. I grabbed a drink and headed up. The two  boys ahead were about 40 feet above us when I heard a shout of below and a rock flashed by me and hit another of the party on the head, it was a scary moment. Within seconds he had a huge bump like an egg on his head and was shaken but fully conscious. I got down and was very worried when I saw the damage. There was no other option but to get down as quickly as possible and luckily there was a steep grass ramp taking us into the Corrie. I had been done it before so in good weather it was fine. The other two wanted to come down with us but we thought that we three could cope.  We were in a remote area and no communications were possible apart from the emergency text service (see below) We were pretty experienced so managed the situation, you can take little chance with a head injury. We monitored him all the way down and stopped at the streams to keep the bandage wet and the swelling down. It took 3 hours to get off and we were glad to see the Loch Coruisk. Our patient was feeling okay (as hard as nails) and soon was down in the river cooling off.  He went for a check up later and was a bit of a celebrity on the boat back.

Cooling Off

Cooling Off

It was a lucky escape, we were a big group very experienced, it was very hot and some of us did not wear helmets, that was daft, I was one of them. An inch more and it could have been a tragic story all so different. It was another great adventure but a bit too close to call for me. The more you go out the more you learn, yet we all still make daft mistakes, the secret is to learn from them.

Look well to each step out there!

Oh the boy got his Munros done on along hot day where they both wished they were 20 years younger.

The details of the Emergency text service are on the Mountaineering Council Of Scotland Website. It is free and a must for those who venture into the wilds.

999 Emergency Text Service
The Mountaineering Council of Scotland (MCofS) is urging everyone who walks climbs and skis in the Scottish mountains to register with the 999 emergency text service. This service has been set up to allow people to text 999 when mobile phone reception is intermittent.
However, you will only be able to use this service if you have registered with emergency SMS first. The MCofS is promoting the service to mountaineers and suggesting that we register now rather than wait for an emergency. To register, text ‘Register’ to 999. You will get a reply and will then need to follow the instructions you are sent. The text system is meant to be used only when voice calls cannot be made and the system does not guarantee that texts will be delivered, so users should wait until they receive a reply from the emergency services before assuming help has been summoned. Further details, including guidelines on how to register, can be found at www.emergencysms.org.uk.

About heavywhalley.MBE

Mountain Rescue Specialist. Environmentalist. Spent 37 years with RAF Mountain Rescue and 3 years with a civilian Team . Still an active Mountaineer when body slows, loves the wild places.
This entry was posted in Articles, Family, Mountain rescue, mountain safety, Mountaineering. Bookmark the permalink.

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