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Midsummer nightmare emphasises need to be well equipped

Posted 6 July 2012
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Midsummer nightmare emphasises need to be well equipped
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Britons heading for the outdoors in summer have been given a reminder to be well-equipped by an incident in the Scottish Highlands.

The rainy weather has done plenty to alert people to the need for waterproofs, but being well-equipped for walking later in the day may also require more attention than usual, as overcast skies mean the light fades more in late evening than when it is clear.

In the latter case, visitors to Scotland can enjoy good visibility until very late, but torches will become more important in wet and cloudy weather.

And one man fell foul of having a torch without spare batteries when he was seeking the Doune Byre Bothy this week, near Inversnaid north of Loch Lomond.

With the light failing him, he lost the path, became disorientated and at midnight he called Mountain Rescue, with the Lomond Team setting out to help.

They were able to find him with the help of the light from his smartphone, tired but otherwise unharmed to the south-west of the bothy. He was fed and walked out to Beinglas Farm.

Normally, the absence of a working torch is more of a problem in winter, when people can easily get stuck on the hills, not least just after the clocks go back and some are caught out by the earlier sunset. 

Those who are seeking not to get lost should make sure they have a working torch even in summer and also a compass to go with their Ordnance Survey maps.

One alternative to carrying spare batteries in a rucksack is to have a wind-up torch, which will keep on working.

However, even this may be prone to failure, as the bulb filament can break.

Walkers should also be prepared for other eventualities that become a higher priority in summer, including carrying more water (or water purifying tablets), suncream when it is sunny and insect repellent for combating midges.ADNFCR-2803-ID-801402038-ADNFCR