Six rescued after Loch Ness canoe swamped

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The Independent Online

A group of canoeists had to be rescued from a loch after huge waves swamped their boat.

The RNLI said gale force eight winds created "atrocious conditions" on Loch Ness, causing the canoe to be flooded with water.

The Loch Ness RNLI crew was called to Invermoriston, on the southern shore of the loch at around 1.10pm yesterday, after receiving reports that a group of holidaymakers from Yorkshire had got into difficulties.

Their 30ft (9m) canoe was flooded by waves up to 6ft 6in (2m) high during "terrible" weather conditions.

The six-strong group of middle-aged canoeists had been able to make for land but became isolated on the shoreline at the bottom of a steep slope.

Two of the group went to call for help from an area where they could get a mobile phone signal while the rest waited behind.

The RNLI Atlantic 75 rescue boat went to the scene and, after a two-hour operation, the remaining four were taken to safety.

Loch Ness RNLI helm Stuart Latham said: "The conditions were awful and required the crew to work very hard and as a team.

"We often practise in similar conditions to prepare ourselves for events like this."

Three of the canoeists were men and three women.

The canoe, a Bell boat twin hulled craft similar to a catamaran, will be recovered later.