Legendary Slovenian Climber Davo Karnicar Dead

Climber and extreme skier Davo Karnicar has died at age 56 in a freak accident. Karnicar was felling trees alone at his workplace in north Slovenia. Relatives found his body underneath a fallen tree.

In 2000, Karnicar was the first to ski from the summit of Everest to Base Camp via the South Col route using oxygen. At the time he said: “Extreme skiing is my sport, my thinking and life itself.” He also made the first ski descent of Annapurna in 1995 with his brother Andrej, although mountain chronicler Elizabeth Hawley disputed some of the details.

Karnicar was initially a member of the Yugoslav national ski team before turning to mountaineering in 1980.

He climbed Nanga Parbat in 1989, K2 in 1993, Shishapangma in 1996 and made ski descents of the northeast face of the Eiger and the east face of the Matterhorn. His solo climb of the Bonatti Pillar on the Aiguille du Dru is perhaps his standout achievement.

In 2001, Karnicar opened a ski school for Nepalese children on the Khumbu Glacier. In 2006, he became the first person to complete ski descents of the Seven Summits.

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