A lone climber has died after falling in the Cairngorms.
In the first tragedy on the hills during the start the winter mountaineering season, the man plunged to his death while tackling Fingers Ridge in the popular Coire an t’Sneachda area of the peak.
The alarm was raised shortly before 10.30am on Sunday and a massive rescue operation was launched.
Cairngorm and Glenmore mountain rescue teams were joined by a rescue helicopter from RAF Lossiemouth and police.
Rescuers located the casualty, who was still alive, and managed to winch him onto the helicopter, but he died on arrival at Raigmore Hospital in Inverness.
A Police Scotland spokesman said: “We can confirm that a man has died after falling in the Cairngorms yesterday despite the best efforts of those involved in his rescue.
“Police received notification that a lone climber had fallen whilst climbing Fingers Ridge in the Coire an T Snechda area of the Cairngorm mountains shortly before 10.30am yesterday morning.
“He was airlifted to Raigmore Hospital in a critical condition but he sadly succumbed to his injuries and was confirmed to have died on arrival at the hospital.
“Police are in the process of contacting next of kin and no further details will be made available until formal identification has taken place.”