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Tuesday, 2 July, 2002, 10:43 GMT 11:43 UK
Essex man in mountain trouble
Ben Nevis
Ben Nevis is a challenge, even in summer
Police have criticised an Essex man who set off up the UK's highest mountain while wearing only a track-suit and trainers.

Christopher Harris, 21, from Billericay, and a companion, headed up Ben Nevis at 1800 BST on Monday on a walk that normally takes up to eight hours.

His 23-year-old friend turned back when they got into difficulties but Mr Harris continued and became disorientated by mist.

Mr Harris had to be talked down via mobile phone after becoming disorientated by mist.


If you wear silly gear and things go wrong, as in this case, chances of survival are reduced

Terry Confield

He was helped off the mountain by Lochaber Mountain Rescue team leader Terry Confield, who said: "I spoke to him and managed to talk him back onto the track.

"He then made quite a fast descent down the mountain.

"Despite it being summer, hillwalkers should be aware of the varying weather conditions at height.

"People taking to the hills should certainly have the proper footwear and clothes.

'Frightening' terrain

"If you wear silly gear and things go wrong, as in this case, chances of survival are reduced.

"We also have someone here who did not leave enough time to complete the walk in daylight.

"It was very misty at the time and in those conditions you can't see much ahead of you.

"Everything looks steeper than it actually is and can become frightening if you are not used to the terrain."

The cloud base at the time was less than 600 metres with a temperature of about three to four degrees celcius near the summit.


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04 Jul 00 | Scotland
06 Dec 99 | Scotland
22 Aug 99 | Scotland
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