Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) rescuers 'near limit' as call-outs rocket on 'world's busiest mountain'

This mountain is an embarrassment to North Wales on the same level as Rhyl and Wrexham, something needs to be done. It needs gating off and people having to register and pay insurance if they get lost or hurt, as it is anyone can go up there with no experience of the dangers of the mountain, and then the poor charity has to go to their aid!

A hill walker injured in a fall on Yr Wyddfa(Snowdon) and a pair of walkers stuck in full winter conditions near the summit were the latest call-outs for Llanberis Mountain Rescue Team volunteers. These were rescue numbers 300 and 301 for 2023 - a 300% increase on 15 years ago.

It is not surprising given the mountain's incredible popularity that sees walkers queue for over an hour to get a summit picture. The rescue team says around 500,000 people are now visiting the mountain each year. This makes it the busiest mountain in the UK and "possibly the world".

More people means more call-outs and the team say that an increase in the number of attendances is now placing huge pressure on the volunteers. With incidents frequently occurring during busy holiday periods, team members are increasingly being asked to attend several incidents a day, leading to team member fatigue and the risk of volunteer burn out, especially during busy periods.

Llanberis Mountain Rescue Team Chair, Dr Richard Griffiths said: “We are hugely lucky that our volunteers are willing to go out at any time of day to rescue fellow walkers, climbers, runners and mountain bikers whose day has gone wrong. Our average member attends around 40 call-outs per year. The time impact on them and their families' lives cannot be understated.

“This has been our busiest year yet, and as we get busier and busier there is a very real risk that the service becomes overloaded and we are not able to respond to those in need quickly.”

The rising number of call-outs also increases the frequency of traumatic, complex and dangerous incidents attended by team members, which all bring associated impacts on the wellbeing of the team’s volunteers. While all team members are passionate about volunteering their time to help people in the mountains and dedicate themselves to the training needed to do this safely, balancing this commitment with their personal lives is an increasingly difficult task.

Dr Griffiths. added: “Our 56 operational team members have done over 8000 hours of rescue work so far in 2023. On top of this we have to attend regular team trainings, maintain equipment, raise the funds needed to run a charity and many other non-rescue roles too numerous to mention. As a group of volunteers we are nearing the limit of what we can do to support those in need in the mountains."

The team added: "Promoted nationally and internationally as one of Wales’ foremost tourism destinations, Yr Wyddfa, stands as the United Kingdom’s, and possibly the world’s, busiest mountain with over 500,000 visitors a year.

A familiar scene on Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) as crowds of walkers queue to reach the summit. The mountain is in line to take the prime 'Mayfair' square and is likely to play a part in the Chance and Community Chest cards (see below)
A familiar scene on Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) as crowds of walkers queue to reach the summit. The mountain is in line to take the prime 'Mayfair' square and is likely to play a part in the Chance and Community Chest cards (see below) 

"This has led to Llanberis Mountain Rescue Team's distinction as the most active mountain rescue team in the country. Since surpassing 100 incidents in 2008, we now experience 300% the number of call-outs, a remarkable increase over the past 15 years and an increasingly unsustainable growth rate for a small charity run entirely by volunteers."

Dr Griffiths added: “In the coming years we will be looking to continue our work with other stakeholders to reduce the number of mountain incidents on Yr Wyddfa and to build our capacity to respond to this increasing demand. In the meantime, we continue to encourage walkers and climbers to prepare adequately so that they enjoy their time in the mountains by following the key messages from Adventure Smart UK.”



  1. Imagine having to queue at the top of the mountain! It looks like Asylum seekers queuing to get in the boats, what a total blot on the landscape this mountain now is.


Post a Comment

Thank you for your comment