Two mountaineers climbed the Mięguszowiecki Szczyt Wielki on Sunday evening and got stuck on the top. After consultation with TOPR rescuers, the tourists spent the night there and only in the morning – in very difficult conditions – did they descend to the Slovak side.
Two mountain climbers called the headquarters of the Tatra Volunteer Rescue Service around 10 pm on Sunday and informed the rescuers that after climbing the wall of the Mięguszowiecki Szczyt Wielki peak they got stuck near the top.
After consultation with TOPR officers, a decision was made that tourists should spend the night in the place where they are. Both TOPR rescuers and the Slovak Horska Zachranna Serwis went out in their direction.
Descent in very difficult conditions
Throughout the night, mountain climbers remained in telephone contact with rescuers. At 6.30 in the morning they informed TOPR that they were starting the descent along the ridge towards Hińczowa Przełęcz.
“At that time, the rescuers reached the area of Zadnia Galeria Cubryńska on skis and started rigging with ropes, the so-called Roja Chimney, and then through Żelasko towards the Wielka Galeria Cubryńska. The weather conditions at that time began to deteriorate rapidly” – we read in the TOPR communiqué. Rescuers pointed to strong winds and rain turning to snow.
A happy ending to the rescue operation
At 9 o’clock TOPR-men obtained the coordinates of mountaineers. They were under Zadnia Piarżysta Przełęcz, separating the massif of Cubryna and Koprowy Wierch. Rescuers told them to go towards Wielki Staw Hińczowy. A group of rescuers also came out this way Slovakia.
Just before noon, the rescuers of the Horska Zachranna Service came across mountaineers on the trail in the area of Wielki Staw Hińczowy. From there they brought them to the shelter at Popradskie Staw.
Conditions in the Tatras. Again the avalanche “three”
After heavy snowfall in the Tatra Mountains, the third degree of avalanche danger has been in force since Tuesday, TOPR announced. Any trips to the higher parts of the Tatra Mountains are discouraged.
In the higher parts of the Tatra Mountains there are very difficult conditions for tourism. According to the services of the Tatra National Park, the trails were covered with a layer of fresh snow, and in many places the wind created deep drifts.
“Low cloud ceiling together with snowfall significantly reduce visibility, which can lead to loss of orientation in the field and getting lost. The trails above the upper limit of the forest are untrampled. There is still a strong, gusty wind. Such conditions require extensive experience in winter mountain tourism and having the right equipment such as crampons, ice ax, helmet, avalanche ABC.
On the lower-lying trails and access roads to the shelters, there is also a layer of fresh snow. It is icy and slippery in places. When going on trips to the montane valleys, it is worth taking handles and poles.
More snowfall is expected in the coming days.
Main photo source: T. Kaminski, D. Kędra, TOPR