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Two alpinists found dead on the Grandes Jorasses

Bodies recovered after being stranded after 6 nights on the Mont Blanc massif

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Robin Deering | Chamonix Editor | Published: 9 Nov 2011

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Two alpinists found dead on the Grandes Jorasses

The bodies of two experienced mountaineers, Olivier Sourzac and Charlotte Demetz, stranded on the Grandes Jorasses since Thursday 3rd of November have been recovered by the Italian resuce services.

As we previously reported the French mountain guide Olivier Sourzac from Passy and experienced climber Charlotte Demetz set out on Wednesday on a climbing expedition on the North face of the Grandes Jorasses with the intention to be back down the following day but bad weather set in and prevented the pair from making their descent.

The first helicopter search team set off only on Tuesday as bad weather prevailed over the weekend and snow at altitude prevented search teams from reaching the pair at 4050 metres.

With todays fair weather the rescue services finally located the two climbers, the guide and his client were found at 4050 meters, 150 meters below the Walker peak - on the normal descent of the Grandes Jorasses to the left of the Whymper serac.
They were roped to a relay point on a rock face, which prevented them from making a hole in the snow which could have protected them form the sub-zero temperatures.
"They froze to death as they could not protect themselves from the cold, they were exposed and without a sleeping bag - I think they were trying to make their way down" reported a member of the Italian rescue team.

Our thoughts go out to family and friends of Olivier Sourzac and Charlotte Demetz.

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