American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Ruprecht Otto Kammerlander, 1940-1975

  • In Memoriam
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1979



You entered our lives as a warm wind on melting snow, a newness that startled and changed.

You lived life on the edge, pulling us up with you at times to share the view.

You climbed with us, laughed with us, cried with us, sang with us.

Then you left—as suddenly as you came.

Yet you are not gone, nor can that ever be.

For in all of us remains your mind your heart your joy.

And we are greater for it.

Bruce McCubbrey

On October 16, 1978, Rupert Kammerlander, one of the Club’s most colorful and enthusiastic members, was killed in a motorcycle accident. Rupert’s death leaves a void which can never be filled. His energy and joy reflected a love of the mountains and nature of a magnitude which few men acquire. He will be deeply missed by all of his friends.

Rupert was born and raised in Austria. He first came to the United States in 1964. Although he had done little technical climbing in Austria, he was an experienced mountaineer when he arrived in the U.S., with many Alpine climbs to his credit, including solo ascents.

In 1970, Rupert took up technical climbing and rapidly progressed to a high level of skill. His accomplishments in the U.S. include the triple direct on El Capitan, the south face of Mount Watkins, the direct northwest face of Half Dome, many difficult first ascents in the Sierra Nevada and Pinnacles National Monument, and the first solo ascent of the west rib of Mount McKinley. He was also an excellent climbing instructor, as many of his former pupils will attest.

Rupert had another great love besides mountains—a love of classical music. Rupert’s friends have arranged for a seat in his honor at the new San Francisco Performing Arts Center. Those wishing to contribute may send their gift, designated in Memoriam for Ruprecht Otto Kammerlander, to Sponsors of the San Francisco Performing Arts Center, Suite 4835, Bank of America Center, 555 California Street, San Francisco, California 94104.

Bruce McCubbrey and Frank Sarnquist

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