Unravelling the mystery of Nanga Parbat.

Research paper by Walther W Parson, Anita A Brandstätter, Harald H Niederstätter, Petra P Grubwieser, Richard R Scheithauer

Indexed on: 05 May '06Published on: 05 May '06Published in: International Journal of Legal Medicine


Since the disappearance of Günther Messner, brother of the world-famous mountaineer Reinhold Messner, on an expedition to Nanga Parbat in 1970, the circumstances of his death have given rise to controversy. Reinhold Messner claimed that he and Günther descended the Diamir face together when an avalanche killed his brother, while other expedition members argued that Günther was abandoned by Reinhold to descend the Rupal face. Now, 35 years after the event, Günther's remains have been found at the Diamir face and have been identified by forensic DNA fingerprinting. The location of the remains supports Messner's version, thus putting to rest one of the climbing communities' most publicised controversies.