January 15, 2021

Tail with a happy ending as sheepdog rescued from cliffs at Comeragh Mountains

A sheepdog found itself at the centre of a dramatic rescue operation in the Comeragh Mountains yesterday evening.

The South Eastern Mountain Rescue Association (SEMRA) was called out yesterday after the dog became stuck on a narrow path high up the cliffs the back of Coumshingaun Lake.

The dog had been working with a local farmer rounding up sheep when she suddenly found herself 50 metres down a steep 300 metre cliff and unable to get back to the top.

Four members of the SEMRA team were brought up to the top of Coumshingaun by Rescue 117, which happened to be training in the area at the time.

A member of the team was lowered to the area near the dog, but this rescue attempt could not be completed.

Two other members of the team followed on foot bringing more equipment. The helicopter also returned and collected additional equipment from a seventh member of the team and dropped it on top of the mountain.

With the extra equipment and extra members, a second set of ropes was set up and a second team member was lowered to the other side of the dog.

One of the team members, who is himself is a sheep farmer, was then able to hunt the dog across into a nearby gully and she was able to make her way back up to the top to her happy owner.

SEMRA recounted details of the dramatic rescue on the group’s Facebook page.

“A good news story with a positive and happy outcome in difficult times,” a spokesperson said.

“Given that it was a working sheepdog that a farmer was using to bring down sheep for the lambing season we were very happy to respond to the incident. It was the right thing to do in the circumstances. Given that no human casualty was involved it made the situation easier to manage from a Covid 19 point of view.

“SEMRA would like to thank all the walkers who are staying away from the mountains at the moment. No other walkers were seen on the mountain or at the car parks.”

PHOTO: South Eastern Mountain Rescue Association 

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