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Friday, January 04, 2008

Avalanche danger on Helvelyn

Avalanche Warning In Lake District

Updated:17:29, Friday January 04, 2008
An avalanche warning has been issued in the Lake District - a very rare event in the mountains of England.

Conditions 'rarely been so bad'

Weather conditions on Helvellyn especially have deteriorated to such an extent that visitors to the national park in Cumbria have been strongly advised to stay away from the hills.
The Lake District National Park Authority (LDNPA) says conditions have rarely been so bad.
Fell top assessor Craig Palmer said he had not seen Helvellyn in such a dangerous state for many years.

At 950 metres, Helvellyn is England's third highest peak.
There was a wind chill factor of nearly minus 16C, solid ice and up to half a metre of snow on the mountain, Mr Palmer said.

The former marine commando said: "High winds are moving the snow around and it's not bonding.
"It's lethal underfoot as edges are literally breaking away. An added danger comes from a cornice of snow, which could break off and avalanche at any time.
"I've rarely seen anything as bad as this in the Lake District and I would strongly urge people, even those experienced in winter mountaineering, not to venture out on to hills until the situation improves."
Walkers are advised to stay away from high peaks until the snow and ice subsides.
The LDNPA's Weatherline is on 08700 55 0575 or
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