A WINTER hill walker has had "a lucky escape" after sliding more than 600 feet off a mountain ridge - only to be saved by the depth of snow that cushioned his fall.

The man was with a female companion when he went through a wind-blown cornice near the summit of 4012ft-high Carn Mor Dearg.

The Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team, police and a Stornoway Coastguard search and rescue helicopter were all alerted just before noon yesterday.

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John Stevenson, leader of Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team, said the man was lucky to have escaped injury.

"He had a lucky escape. The snow saved him."