This year is the Cairngorm Mountain Rescue Team's 50th anniversary, and they've just had their busiest winter for decades. Against this backdrop a documentary on the team has been made, and it'll be aired on BBC Scotland's The Adventure Show on Sunday April 7.
'We were given unprecedented access and have been able to put together a more comprehensive picture than previously possible'
In the last half century the team has attended around 3000 rescues. To help people understand their work and the conditions in which they operate, team leader Willie Anderson invited film makers Triple Echo Productions to follow them over a 6-month period from October 2012. It just so happened that this was their busiest season in 30 years.
'It's a particularly appropriate time to have made this film because this year the Cairngorm team celebrate their 50th anniversary' says Richard Else, Director of The Adventure Show. 'It's a major achievement and one the team can be justly proud of.'
'I hope the programme will give a real and unsensational insight into the work of one of our MRTs... We also hope it will enable people who aren't walkers or climbers to understand the attraction of the mountains in winter.'
To help film in the most challenging conditions Else was joined by local guides Iain Peter, Mark Diggins and Graeme Ettle along with team members themselves, who captured a variety of dramatic footage - often at night. Off the hill, the film also goes behind the scenes to see how rescues are co-ordinated from the control room just outside Aviemore, and looks at how a continuous training regime enables the team to cope with any conditions.
'I've seen the Cairngorm team in action at various times over the last 20 years and I've always held them in the very highest regard. But being with them over this winter period has renewed my admiration for every single member of the team. We were given unprecedented access and have been able to put together a more comprehensive picture than previously possible of how a mountain rescue team operates' says Richard Else.
'It's incredible to think that the team are made up entirely of volunteers who raise most of the money necessary to operate this service themselves. I hope our film will enable people across Scotland to more fully understand the service they provide.'
The Adventure Show broadcasts on BBC2 Scotland, 9pm Sunday April 7. Viewers south of the border can catch up with it on Sky digital, FreeSat and of course BBC iPlayer (after transmission).
See the trailer here.
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