The increased numbers of people climbing Croagh Patrick during the year are eroding the path to the summit and increasing the chances of a fall according to Mayo Mountain Rescue.
On Sunday, a 25-year-old Galway man was airlifted to Mayo General Hospital with head injuries after he fell nearly 30 feet while descending Croagh Patrick. The incident took place at approximately 5pm on Sunday evening when the man slipped and tumbled between 20 and 30 feet down the mountain, in an area half way between the summit and the first station.
A rescue team from Mayo Mountain Rescue were on site within an hour of the fall taking place and the injured person - who was from the Menlo area of Galway - was airlifted by the Coast Guard helicopter as a precaution. He was brought to Mayo General Hospital but his injuries are not believed to be serious.
The injured man was on his way down from the mountain and Shane McGuire, PRO of Mayo Mountain Rescue explained that 90 per cent of falls occur while on the way down the mountain.
He told The Mayo News that thousands of people climbed the holy mountain over the weekend and the increased numbers in traffic throughout the year was eroding the path.
“There is a lot of traffic on Croagh Patrick and as a result the path is eroding significantly. As a result it is making the path more difficult particularly for people on the way down. I was on the mountain on Saturday and there must have been a thousand people on it and I was expecting a call-out. A fall can happen quite easily when on the way down,” he said.
See Page 7 for news on this year’s annual pilgrimage.