An experienced mountain walker who ensured he did not drag his friends to their deaths after plummeting 600 feet was killed after slipping on ice, a coroner has ruled.

Shaun Bowden and his group got into trouble after weather conditions deteriorated while they were hill walking in Glencoe.

The 39-year-old former cardiac physiologist slipped on ice and began to fall down the peak.

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However, rather than reaching out to grab another member of his group, he tried to dig his pickaxe into the rocks but was unable to halt his slide, hitting a rock on the way down and suffering serious head injuries.

Edward Thomas, senior coroner for Hertfordshire, recorded a verdict of accidental death and said Scottish authorities had decided not to conduct an inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the death.

He told the inquest in Hatfield that Mr Bowden and his group had scaled the highest peak in the Glencoe area, Bidean Nam Bian, when the weather conditions worsened.

The rescue operation had to be called off due to the conditions and his body was recovered the following day.

A pathologist recorded the cause of death as significant head injuries following a fall from height.