Cornice collapse kills Pyrenean ski tourers

One ski tourer is missing and another has been killed above the étang (lake) de Gnioure on the south-east face of the pic d’Endron. The pair were climbing on a cornice which broke away from the mountain around 2300 meters.

The accident occurred during a trip organized by the French Alpine Club (CAF) based in the Ariège yesterday. The pair, part of a group of five, never arrived at the rendezvous at the summit of the 2472 meters Endron. The slopes above the étang (lake) de Gnioure are very abrupt.

The police have identified a ski pole belonging to the missing ski tourer which would indicate that he fell on the same side as his companion. However poor weather has prevented the mountain rescue helicopter from reaching the scene.

The zero isotherm was around 3600 meters in the sector yesterday. The missing skier was not equipped with an avalanche beacon which could have helped the search.

Posted by davidof on Monday, 04 May, 2009 at 09:25 PM

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