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Chockstone Forum - Accidents & Injuries

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Marty Schmidt and Denali Schmidt killed on K2
5:45:35 PM
Just heard the sad news that Marty and Denali Schmidt were killed in an avalanche on K2, Marty was one of the most experienced high altitude NZ mountain guides and a super friendly guy. RIP
7:00:14 PM
Yep, terrible news. I first met Marty at the bottom of the fixed ropes on Denali over a decade ago. He heard the Australian accents of me and my partner and struck up a conversation. He'd been living up the north coast of NSW while also guiding overseas. He'd done so much even back then, and yet was hiding away up near Coffs Harbour. I was just thinking "who the f--- IS this guy?".

Marty's climbing experience stretched back to Yosemite in the 1970s and also time in the US military as a para-jump rescue guy. He spent some seasons on Everest guiding and supporting and was involved in trying to save Australian climber Mike Rheinberger in 1994, from which only Mark Whetu survived. Marty had attempted K2 twice before, on one occasion soloing to over 8000m on the north ridge. He climbed Kanchenjunga in a small team, no O2 and then in the last few years strung together more successful 8000er ascents. His feat on Makalu, where he rescued TWO Ukrainian climbers early in the morning then went on to summit alone right afterwards should have got him a medal. Those dudes would have been dead. Straight up, Marty was one of the strongest high altitude climbers in the world today.

I hung out with Marty a couple of times in Antarctica and he was always the most psyched guy in the camp. He was really supportive of less experienced climbers and always happy to help out. His strength and energy on and off the mountain was amazing for anybody, let alone a guy in his 50s. He also gave good neck rubs.

Can't say RIP. Marty didn't rest.

2:40:52 PM
shared a rope with them both...condolences to the family...

8:45:52 PM
Here's an interesting firsthand account of the events leading up to the incident;

Sounds like both Marty and Denali were very well regarded, and will be sorely missed.

5:22:27 PM
This article talks to Chris Warner who was partnered with the Schmidt's on that fateful climb. He didnt like the conditions and chose to turn around.

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