Hiker dies after falling 200 feet taking photo on mountain summit

Greitspitze, in the Austrian Alps
The couple had hiked to the summit of Greitspitze, on the Austrian-Swiss border (Image credit: Getty)

A 77-year old German hiker has died in the Austrian Alps after losing his balance while taking a photo as a memento.

The man had climbed Greitspitze on the Austrian-Swiss border with a 63-year-old Spanish woman when the accident happened. As NBC reports, he was attempting to snap a picture of his companion beside the huge cross marking the mountain's summit when he lost his balance.

He fell around 200 feet down the rockface, and when rescue services arrived, they found that he had passed away.

According to mountaineering site SummitPost, Greitspitze is a popular destination for hikers, with multiple trails (including a challenging via ferrata), and the summit ridge is equipped with steel cables to help visitors keep their balance.

While the cross is the destination for most visitors, the mountain's highest point is actually slightly to the south. However, the true summit is much less picturesque, particularly in summer, due to the surrounding ski facilities.

Cat Ellis

Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 15 years, and was fitness and wellbeing editor on TechRadar before joining the Advnture team in 2022. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better), usually wearing at least two sports watches.