Ueli Steck, a world-renowned Swiss climber, died from a mountaineering accident last Sunday at a slope near Mount Everest. The "Swiss Machine" was trying to get ready for his 8,850-meter Mount Everest and Mount Lhotse climb next month when the accident happened.
Steck's friends and family were deeply saddened by the news of his untimely death. According to CNN, the mountaineer slipped and fell into a crevasse at around 6,600 meters on Mount Nuptse near Mount Everest.
Although the exact circumstances of Ueli Steck's death are yet to be verified, the pilot who airlifted Steck's body from Mount Everest to Kathmandu said, via New York Times, that it was particularly windy on that Sunday and it didn't help that he was alone. Steck's trekking partner, Tenji Sherpa, was nursing a frostbite in his hand at the base camp during that time.
Several condolences from famed mountain climbers have already been received by Steck's family.
Don Bowie, the famed climber who accompanied Steck in the Shishapangma climb in Tibet back in 2011, posted a picture of Steck and himself on Instagram and said that he was "totally gutted" and "beyond sadness" at the devastating news. Bowie wasn't able to complete the Shishapangma climb at the time, and even though Steck pledged to his wife that he wouldn't try any more solo attempts, he scaled and finished the climb alone.
Meanwhile, climber Alan Arnette posted on his website, "My deep condolences to all of Ueli's family, friends and admirers around the world. This is a truly tragic day in mountaineering."
Steck is known in the mountaineering world for being extremely versatile and fast in scaling tricky mountain peaks. He won the prestigious Piolet D'or award, mountaineering's highest honor, twice in 2009 and 2014.
Ueli Steck's death is the first casualty in this year's mountaineering season in Nepal, according to local officials. Last year, six lives were claimed by Mount Everest.