What's the best thing to carry with you if you plan on a spot of dangerous off-piste skiing and might need rescuing if things go wrong?

No, it isn't a flask of brandy or even a flare gun to alert mountain rescue – according to two French snow fans, it's an MP3 player.

Chilly night

The pair of foolhardy thrill seekers had managed to get lost after venturing outside the marked runs at Savognin in southern Switzerland and were clearly in serious danger if they had been forced to spend the night outside in temperatures as low as -15˚C .

Instead, rescuers spotted them from a helicopter by the light coming from the screen of an MP3 player one of them was carrying. Reports don't say what make it was, but it's a safe bet it begins with the letter 'i'.

Dead battery

Tellingly, rescuers were only looking for the men because they had previously phoned in to say they were lost before the phone's battery died.

Maybe next time they'll consider charging their mobiles up before taking a walk on the wild side.