A STRICKEN walker was treated in hospital in Sheffield after being rescued from a dark, cold, wet and windy Peak District ravine.
Woodhead Mountain Rescue Team was called by South Yorkshire Police after reports of two men, both aged 46 from Chesterfield, stuck 150 metres down a ravine 1.5km from a road in the Ewden Valley.
The only way to access the men was using ropes and abseiling, so team members rigged up a belay to lower medics down through a steep slope tangled with overgrown rhododendron bushes.
Veteran Woodhead Team member Ian Winterburn said: “It was probably the most inaccessible location I’ve ever been involved with.”
Following a treacherous descent, the medics found one of the walkers had an injury to his lower leg after trying to climb a dry stone wall which collapsed on top of him.
The second man was uninjured, but cold and worried. Woodhead team leader Keith Wakeley made the decision to call in air support to winch the man to safety.
While they waited for an RAF Sea King helicopter to arrive from Leaconfield, the man was treated for his leg injury and placed on a stretcher in readiness.
The air crew circled the location and manoeuvred the helicopter into a suitable spot to extract the casualty, who was then flown to Sheffield for a handover with the ambulance service and onwards to hospital.
The second walker was walked to safety by team members through a nearby stream bed, and on to the road where he was taken home to Chesterfield by South Yorkshire Police.
Mr Wakeley added: “It was an exceptionally difficult rescue given the location, weather and terrain. Thankfully, both men were well equipped and we managed to get to them fairly quickly.”