A missing hillwalker in the Cairngorms left clues in the snow to help mountain rescuers find him.
Mountain rescue teams from Braemar and the Cairngorms were alerted after a 40-year-old man was reported missing after he had been unable to reach Aviemore as planned on Sunday.
Rescuers set out on the lower glens of the Cairngorms on Monday morning to find him, and after spotting his name in a mountain bothy’s logbook, they saw his name and arrows pointing to his direction drawn in the snow.
The man, who took refuge in the bothy due to treacherous weather conditions, was eventually traced by a member of the rescue team safe and well in Braemar.
Matt Smith, a member of Braemar mountain rescue, said the clues, drawn using a walking pole, meant rescuers could focus their search on the direction the arrows were pointed towards.
He said: “During the search we came across a bothy book that was signed with his name, so we knew he had been in the area.
“We started to follow the footprints and curiously to us the footprints led in entirely the opposite direction from his intended route, so we were left wondering with a choice to follow them.
“We chose to follow them, and as we were scratching our heads about these footprints and where they might go and who they might belong to, someone spotted his name written in the snow.
“He had also pointed arrows in the direction he was heading, which made the search so much easier.
“He made his way to a road end and them got a lift into Braemar itself where, by another twist of fate, he was met by one of the rescue team who part-owns one of the shops who knew he was missing.
“He was absolutely fine.”