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Last Updated: Tuesday, 28 February 2006, 12:50 GMT
World runner's helicopter rescue
Rosie Swale Pope
Rosie Swale Pope set out from her Tenby home in October 2004
A Welsh woman, over two years into an attempt to run around the world, has been rescued by the Alaskan National Guard after suffering frostbite.

Rosie Swale Pope, 59, became caught up in a severe Artic storm while travelling on the frozen Yukon River.

A helicopter rescue team located her on Sunday and airlifted her to safety.

The runner, who left Tenby in October 2004, has run through Europe and Russia to the Bering Straits before crossing into north America in late 2005.

Regular updates on her progress are published on her website.

The first indication something was wrong was a text message her son James received on 24 February in which her mother said she was suffering frostbite in her big toe.

Map of Alaska
She was in good spirits and to say the least, glad to have some company
Major Mike Haller

The frostbite became worse and a helicopter was launched on Sunday.

Major Mike Haller, spokesman for the Alaska Air National Guard said: "Our search team found Rosie hunkered into her shelter on Henry Island a little past 1900GMT.

"She was in good spirits and to say the least, glad to have some company."

Set-backs

Mr Haller said she was enroute to the town of Tanana but severe weather conditions, even by Alaskan standards, "caused her to have to hunker down and stay put, apparently, for the past several days.

"From what we've heard from our crews, via radio communications, the weather conditions have absolutely been challenging throughout the search and rescue mission.

"The blizzard conditions did not help in the efforts.

"Fortunately, Rosie had some communications capabilities with her that allowed for a pinpoint accurate pick up."

She was taken to Providence Hospital in Anchorage for treatment.

Rosie has kept going despite several set backs.

On the Russian leg of her run she was held at knife-point during an attempt to steal her satellite phone.

The grandmother also had to go to hospital for minor injuries after being hit by a bus where she was told she had pneumonia.

She took on the challenge to raise funds for a Russian children's home in Kitezh, and to increase awareness of The Prostate Cancer Charity after the death of her husband Clive Pope.


SEE ALSO:
World runner faces bleak winter
20 Dec 04 |  South West Wales
World trip runner hits 5,000 miles
02 Oct 04 |  South West Wales
Rosie, 57, to run around world
25 Sep 03 |  South West Wales


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