American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, Nepal, Mount Everest, Attempted Ski Descent

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1997

Mount Everest, Attempted Ski Descent. A six-member Slovenian expedition under the leadership of Viki Groselj attempted an ascent of Everest via the Messner route with the goal of skiing from the summit. Davo Karnicar was the designated skier. The other members were Stane Klemenc, Damjan Mesko (doctor), Tone Skarja and Croatian Stipe Bozic. The team also had seven Sherpas.

On April 28 we reached Base Camp at 6450 meters. On April 30 we put up our camp on the north ridge at 7050 meters. On May 8 our camp was pitched at 7800 meters on the snowfield below the Great Couloir. On May 9 Davo Karnicar reached a place in the Great Couloir where we were supposed to set up our last camp at 8200 meters. Unfortunately, although he used oxygen, he got bad chilblains on his hands during his ascent. He descended to Base Camp on the same day, but his chilblains were so bad we had to give up the idea of repeating the ascent. Since he as extreme skier was the key personality of the expedition, we decided to end it.

On May 16 we left Base Camp and on June 4 returned to Slovenia. Karnicar lost two fingers, but plans to return in 1997. His best achievement so far is the first ski descent of Annapurna I with his brother Drejc in 1995.

Viki Groselj, Planinska zveza Slovenije

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