One of the many things that keeps surprising me about Mallorca is the number of mountaineers hailing from this island who busy themselves with climbing the world’s highest summits. Their aspirations are quite clearly aroused by the majestic mountain peaks here in Mallorca, in the Serra de Tramuntana.
Tolo Calafat, one of Mallorca’s best known mountaineers, successfully reached the summit of Mount Annapurna in the Himalayas three days ago, age 39. On his descent from the 8,091 m peak, the mountaineer encountered a spell of drowsiness and was forced to halt for a rest. Sadly, the experienced climber never regained his full capacities and succumbed to exhaustion and possibly a cerebral oedema at 7,600 m of altitude. Changing weather prevented a rescue helicopter to embark on a search in good time. Loads of snow had fallen on Wednesday night on the upper slopes of Annapurna and weather conditions apparently were quite appalling. Señor Calafat’s death was confirmed yesterday morning from the team’s Camp 4. His Spanish companions, Juanito Oiarzabal and Carlos Pauner, as well as the Romanian Horia Colibasanu, faced a difficult descent, being also exhausted and showing signs of freezing and snow blindness. Luckily, fears that avalanches could affect their route down to safety proved mistaken; fortunately, they made it to Camp 4 from where they could be airlifted safely back to Base Camp.
Before reaching the top of Annapurna, Tolo Calafat had successfully scaled Cho-oyu (8,201 m), Mount Everest (8,848 m), Aconcagua (6,954 m), Mount Artesonraju (6,025 m), Mount Urus (5,495 m), Ishinca (5,530 m), Pisco (5,750 m), Mount Alpamayo (5,957 m), Aneto (3,404 m), Monte Posets (3,375 m), Monte Perdido (3,355 m), Mont Blanc (4,810 m), Monte Rosa (2,165 m) and Monte Elbrus (5,600 m), plus a whole string of other ambitious heights.
Tolo Calafat leaves a wife and two children.
The photo was taken from the Internet, courtesy of diariodemallorca.es. The video was taken from the Internet, courtesy of YouTube and mariogf01.