Bodies Of American Mountaineers Found 16 Years After Avalanche

Alex Lowe, left, was killed in an avalanche on Oct. 5, 1999, while ascending Tibet's Shishapangma mountain. His body and the body of cameraman David Bridges were found on Wednesday -- about 16 and a half years later. Photo courtesy of Alex Lowe Charitable Foundation

LHASA, Tibet, May 2 (UPI) — The bodies of Alex Lowe and David Bridges, two American mountain climbers, have been found 16 years after they were killed in an avalanche during a climb on Tibet’s Shishapangma mountain.

Lowe, 40, a world-renowned mountaineer regarded by some as the best at the time, and Bridges, 29, a cameraman, were climbing the roughly 26,300-foot Shishapangma peak on Oct. 5, 1999, when they were buried by a huge avalanche.

Their bodies were found by David Goettler and Ueli Steck on Wednesday, who were acclimatizing for an ascent on the south face of Shishapangma.

The pair recognized the remains of two climbers encased in blue ice as their bodies began to emerge from the glacier. They further identified the deceased by their equipment, the Alex Lowe Charitable Foundation said in a statement.

Conrad Anker received a call while in Kathmandu, Nepal, from Goettler and Steck, who told him the bodies were found. Anker, who was with the deceased pair when the avalanche occurred but survived with minor injuries, married Lowe’s widow, Jennifer Lowe-Anker, and adopted the couple’s three sons.

“Alex’s parents are thankful to know that their son’s body has been found and that Conrad, the boys and I will make our pilgrimage to Shishapangma,” Jennifer Lowe-Anker said in a statement. “It is time to put Alex to rest.”


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