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Famous Polish Climber Dies in Swiss Alps

Kacper Tekieli had been nominated for a Piolets d'Or and had several impressive ascents to his name

Polish climber Kacper Tekieli died while soloing an alpine route on Jungfrau in the Swiss Alps. Officials say that he was caught in an avalanche during his descent.

Swiss rescue services were alerted yesterday but poor weather conditions prevented a team from reaching the scene. A helicopter managed to access the area today and recovered Tekieli’s body. He was 38 years old and worked as a guide with the Polish Mountaineering Association.

Tekieli was experienced on big wall, hard ice lines and in the Himalaya. A few years ago, he and Andy Nisbet made the first ascent of Wolf Whistle VII 7 on Lurcher’s Crag on Cairn Gorm in Scotland. In 2019, he began to link big routes and got several speed records that still stand today. First, he made a double traverse of the Matterhorn in a push, climbing up and down the four major ridges. Later that year, he free-soloed the Lauper Route on the Eiger in a fast time. He was then nominated for a Piolets d’Or for a new route up the southwest face of Tordenruta in Norway – read his trip report here.

His current objective was to climb the 82 peaks in the Alps that are higher than 4,000 metres, which was done by Ueli Steck in 2015 in only 62 days. Jungfrau was one of those 82 mountains. Tekieli had a son who was born in 2021 and was married to Olympic gold medallist Justyna Kowalczyk. His final social media post was from two days ago, it shows his pack against a door at the Konkordiahütte hut near Jungfrau. Our condolences to his family and friends.