Body found in hunt for hiker last seen at campsite on Isle of Skye

Body found in hunt for missing hiker, 74, who was last seen at a campsite on the Isle of Skye

  • A body has been found in the search for 74-year-old hiker Francis Johnson
  • Francis was last seen at a campsite on the Isle of Skye earlier this month 
  • The body has not yet been formally identified, but Francis’ family has been notified 

A body has been found in the search for a 74-year-old hiker who was last seen more than two weeks ago at a campsite on the Isle of Skye.

Francis Johnson was last seen on September 6 when he travelled to the Isle of Skye from his home in Dorset.

A search operation has been underway and yesterday a body was found nearly 1,500 ft up on the south bank of Sgurr nan Gobhar, in the Cuillin Hills.

It took just one hour for the body to be found, but another four for it to be stretchered off the hill. 

A spokeswoman for Police Scotland said: ‘The body of a man has been found on the Cuillin range in the Isle of Skye during searches for a missing person.

‘He is yet to be formally identified but the family of Francis Johnson, 74, who had been reported missing in the area, have been informed.’

Some 30 members of mountain rescue teams were involved with recovering the body on Skye on Saturday.

Francis Johnson (pictured) has been missing since early September, and was last seen at a campsite on the Isle of Skye

The body was found on the south bank of Sgurr nan Gobhar, in the Cuillin Hills (Stock)

Neil Urquhart, team leader of Skye Mountain Rescue Team (MRT) said the discovery was made by a member of the team who noticed ‘something that did not appear natural’.

‘She was looking through binoculars and saw something that did not appear natural. It was only by using a large drone from Cairngorm MRT, and getting right by the remains could you tell it was a body,’ he said.

‘If our team member had not seen it would have been so easy to miss. She id incredibly well. We would also like to thank all the other teams who came to help. It also follows Friday’s search.’

Mr Johnson was an experienced walker and camper.

He left his home in Dorset on September 4, and travelled to the West coast of Scotland, booking into various campsites.

His camping equipment and car are still at the site, after he was last spotted in Glenbrittle. 

Saturday’s search involved Skye, Kintail and Cairngorm mountain rescue teams, Search & Rescue Dog Association and a coastguard search and rescue helicopter from Stornoway, which was diverted to airlift a woman hillwalker to hospital after getting injured in Wester Ross.

She was with a walking group in the Torridon area, and was airlifted by a coastguard search and rescue helicopter from Stornoway to Raigmore Hospital in Inverness. Her condition is unknown.

It comes as 10 members of Glencoe MRT resumed their search for a 56-year-old man who went missing on September 9.

Hopes of finding Charles Kelly alive have now disappeared after a major search last weekend by more than 50 rescue team members, search dogs and a coastguard rescue helicopter also drew a blank.

Searchers admit they are ‘baffled’ by Mr Kelly’s disappearance.

His rucksack was found but the water bottles were empty.

Mr Kelly left his home in Tillicoultry, Clackmannanshire, to go hillwalking and contacted his family around 8pm the next day.

Last week, Glencoe MRT said they were scaling down the search for Mr Kelly, after spending 10 days looking for him.  

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