Mummipedia Wiki
Hannelore Schmatz
Human Mummy
Biographical Information
Name(s) Hannelore Schmatz
Age 39
Sex F
Culture German
Site Mount Everest
Current Location
Location Mount Everest
Catalog #

In 1979, Hannelore Schmatz died on her descent after reaching the summit of Mount Everest.

Exhausted, she was caught by darkness at 8,300 meters (27,200 feet) just below the summit, Schmatz and another climber made the decision to bivouac as darkness fell. The Sherpas urged her and American climber, Ray Gennet, to descend, but they sat down to rest and never got up. At the time she was the first woman to die on the upper slopes of Everest.

She became one of the many bodies on the South East Ridge of Mt. Everest, called the “Rainbow Valley” due to the number of bodies all wearing colourful snow gear to be found there.

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Genet’s body disappeared and has never been found, but for years, Schmatz' body was seen leaning on her backpack froze in that position with her eyes open. Her body was eventually blown over the side of the mountain.


Sub-zero teperatures and dry winds naturally preserved the body.


Ponic, Jason. "Worlds best preserved mummies". Owlaction. 25 October. 2016. Web. 28 February. 2017.