Hikers ‘very lucky‘ before Ben Nevis avalanche

A hiker who reached the summit of Ben Nevis said her group was “very lucky” after three climbers were killed in an avalanche on the mountain.

Amber Boucher, from Newport, set off with friends from a youth hostel to climb the Scottish mountain on Monday.

On Tuesday morning, three climbers died and a fourth person was injured in the avalanche, which took place in an area known as Number 5 Gully.

Ms Boucher, 41, said they “saw the risks” on their trek.

“It was cold, heavy winds, snow flurries,” she said.

“There was a whiteout at the top which got a bit scary, our footprints were being covered, but we managed to find our way down with another climber.

“We saw the risks yesterday. We still went and we were very lucky.”

After hearing the news on their way back to Wales, she said the group were “thanking our lucky stars”.

Ben Nevis, near Fort William in the western Highlands, is the UK‘s highest mountain a popular destination for experienced climbers, attracting 125,000 visitors each year.