waterfalls near Dinas Mawddwy. At this time of year the 200 m rise of the falls is a popular venue for winter mountaineers and is considered one of the best ice climbs in Wales. The climb, classified as Grade IV, consists of steep ice with short vertical steps and longer slopes up to 70 degrees, and is usually climbed in 5 roped sections or 'pitches.' This subdivision limits the distance of any fall, and it is thought that the climber fell no more than 40 m, coming to rest in a difficult position mid way up the climb.
Team members in the area were quickly on the scene, and together with a National Park Ranger, were able
to co-ordinate the early phases of the rescue. Because of the difficult position of the casualty, and the potentially serious nature of the injuries caused by such a fall, the assistance of a helicopter from 122 Squadron from RAF Valley
was requested. In the meantime, the main body of the team set about preparing for a technical rope rescue, should the helicopter be unable to assist. On arrival, the helicopter winch-man was lowered to assess the injured climber, and
it was decided to proceed with evacuating the casualty and their climbing partner by air. Both were flown to Aberystwyth Bronglais Hospital for further assessment, and their condition is currently unknown.
The team were stood down from what would have been an extremely long and difficult rescue had
the helicopter been unable to attend.