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Suspected accident Major search called off after body of male hiker discovered on Mayo's Mweelrea mountain

The man aged 35, originally from the area but now lives in the UK, was described as an experienced hiker


Mweelrea Mountain

Mweelrea Mountain

Mweelrea Mountain

A major search for a hillwalker missing on Mweelrea mountain in Mayo since Monday has been called off after the body of a male was discovered.

The man aged 35, originally from the area but now lives in the UK, was described as an experienced hiker. However, it’s believed is that he may have suffered an accident.

The climber disappeared two days ago while hiking alone on Mweelrea near Westport - the highest mountain in Connacht.

Mountain Rescue teams, the Irish Coast Guard, Gardai, Civil Defence and local volunteers are all involved in the search.

However, weather conditions on Monday and Tuesday hampered the assistance of the Coastguard rescue helicopter R118.
Currently, R118 and mountain rescue teams are in the process of trying to recover the remains from the mountain.

A source said the man was well dressed for the mountain and was an experienced hiker who had climbed mountains in Mayo previously.

Paul Feeney from Mayo Mountain Rescue extended his condolence to the man’s family and friends.

“We received a call about a missing person on Mweelrea mountain on Monday evening. The last contact a family member had with him was at 3.30 pm when he had sent a selfie from the summit of Mweelrea.

“Later that evening, they had tried to make contact with him and were unable to reach him by phone.

“They contacted by the emergency services which in turn contacted Mayo Mountain Rescue.
“We went to Delphi where we knew where his car was, and we did a search of the area we thought would be his route off the mountain, in case he was delayed due to the bad weather conditions that were up there.

“When we didn’t come across him, we came out again the following day at first light.
Mayo Mountain rescue team, Galway Mountain Rescue Team, the coastguard, gardaí and some very knowledgeable locals came out on Tuesday. We spent up until 9.30 pm on Tuesday night combing Mweelrea.

“Weather conditions weren’t great, so it hampered Rescue 118 coming in to help us from the air.

“We were hopeful the weather today would pick up, and it did.

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“But unfortunately, at 1 pm today, the body of a male hiker was discovered on complex ground.

“Mountain rescue teams and Rescue 118 are now in the process of trying to recover the body from the mountain.

“Mayo Mountain Rescue and the wider rescue community would like to pass on our condolences to the family and friends of the deceased.

“Since Covid, mountain climbing has really taken off; it’s the next big craze.

“The weather is very interchangeable on Mweelrea, you can start off on a beautiful summers day, and by the time you get to the summit, you can be down to next to no visibility.

“It is a mountain that has a lot of cliffs on it and very steep ground.

“So you really need to be fairly competent to go up it, especially when the weather is a little bit off.
“The likes of the Reek- Croagh Patrick only have a very small footprint, but Mweelrea has a footprint of 25 sq km of very varied terrain.

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