British climber falls 1200ft to his death in the French Alps

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A British climber has died after falling 1,200ft from a mountain in the French Alps.

He and a companion had become trapped on a precarious rock face in the Massif du Mont Blanc, and did manage to call emergency services.

But terrible weather conditions prevented the rescue helicopter from being able to help.

On the second morning the second man called to say his friend had fallen. The unnamed man's body was found at the bottom of a ravine.

The man, thought to be in his 20s, and his 19-year-old friend, also from Britain, had got into serious difficulties after starting to climb the north face of the Aiguille du Midi on Tuesday.

Captain Benoit Tonnany, of the high mountain police based in the resort of Chamonix, told the Daily Mail: 'They set off to climb this at times vertical face.

'When they reached the Frendo Spur at 9,800ft they called the emergency services on their mobiles, saying they were unable to climb up or down.

'Conditions were appalling, with the weather deteriorating all the time. The pair spent Wednesday night wrapped in their sleeping bag on a high ledge.

'They had asked us to pick them up from the ledge but it was impossible to get a helicopter anywhere near them. They just had to spend another night in the mountains.

'On Thursday we received another call from the climber saying that one had fallen. The reasons remain unexplained.'

It was not until Thursday evening that the emergency services were finally able to get a helicopter and rescue team out.

They found the 19-year-old, who was suffering from mild hypothermia, but he told them his climbing partner had fallen some 1,200ft that morning.

The victim's body was subsequently found at the bottom of a ravine.

His companion was airlifted to hospital and is now thought to have been released.

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