Well-known Guide Dies in New Zealand Alps

Late in the afternoon of August 14, while guiding the New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark, her husband Peter Davis, and several other of the Prime Minister's colleagues, including Energy and Tourism Ministers, Gottlieb Braun-Elwert, one of the most well-known and respected guides in New Zealand, collapsed and died of a heart attack. The party had been ski touring in the Two Thumbs Range, north of Lake Tekapo and well east of Mt. Cook, and had just returned to a hut for the evening when 59-year-old Braun-Elwert collapsed. The group performed CPR for two-and-a-half hours to no avail.

German Braun-Elwert was formerly a nuclear physicist who emigrated to New Zealand in 1978. He'd been a guide since 1971 and climbed Cook a reported twenty-six times, and had pioneered many of the country's ski tours. His most noted non-guiding achievements took place in Patagonia, but in the summer of 1973 he made the first ascent of the entire Peuterey Ridge on Mont Blanc.

Read the full report by Lindsay Griffin on the Alpinist Website

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