Hilaree Nelson, Famed Ski Mountaineer and The North Face Ambassador, Found Dead on Mount Manaslu in Nepal

Hilaree Nelson, ski mountaineer and an ambassador for The North Face, has died.

According to multiple reports, the body of Nelson, 49, was located by rescuers on the southern slope of Mount Manaslu in Nepal, the eighth highest mountain in the world.

Nelson’s death was confirmed today by the Embassy of the United States in Nepal. 

“We are deeply saddened by the death of American adventurer and mountaineer Hilaree Nelson at Manaslu Mountain. We would like to express our heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Nelson. Her spirit and bravery will continue to inspire us,” the embassy wrote via Twitter

Reports surfaced on Monday that Nelson was missing on Manaslu, which was confirmed by The North Face today in a social media post.

According to The North Face on Instagram, Nelson reached the true summit of Manaslu on Monday with her climbing and life partner, Jim Morrison. During her ski descent, the company said Nelson was swept off her feet by moving snow, resulting in a fall down the south face of Manaslu.

Morrison shared further details via Instagram.

“On September 26th at 10:42 am we reached the true summit of Manaslu in tough conditions. We quickly transitioned from climbing to skiing in cold and wind with a plan to ski around the corner and regroup with our Sherpa team. I skied first and after a few turns Hilaree followed and started a small avalanche. She was swept off her feet and carried down a narrow snow slope down the south side (opposite from climbing route) of the mountain over 5000’. I did everything I could to locate her but was unable to go down the face as I hoped to find her alive and live my life with her,” he wrote.

The North Face shared thoughts on what made Nelson special via Instagram.

“Today we lost our hero, mentor and our friend,” the company wrote. “Hilaree Nelson held a spirit as big as the places she led us to. She embodied possibility. Her adventures made us feel at home in the vastness of the world.”

The statement continued, “For us, Hilaree transcended the idea of an athlete, a sport or a community. She helped lead our family at The North Face, by being a teammate and team captain who changed our perspective of the outdoors by showing us exactly what it can mean. Her light will forever be an offering, and her optimism in the face of adversity, will forever be our guide.”

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