The famous Romanian mountain climber Zsolt Török died at the age of 45 in an accident in the Făgăraş Mountains.
Zsolt Török, one of the best known Romanian mountain climbers, was found dead last weekend by mountain rescuers. After climbing the highest and most dangerous mountains of the world, from the Andes to the Himalayas, reaching altitudes of more than 7 thousand meters, where man literally meets the sky, Zsolt Török found his death at home, on Negoiu Peak, which is the second highest peak of the Romanian Carpathians measuring 2,535 meters in height. He had gone alone for several days to climb the Făgăraş Mountains.
On Saturday, his wife reported him missing after a group of mountain climbers had found his things in a mountain shelter. Searches started right away and involved mountain rescuers and gendarmes from the counties of Sibiu and Arges as well as a helicopter of the interior ministry. The man was found dead several hours later. According to mountain rescuers, he seemingly slid down the rocks. The area where he was found was very unstable and generally avoided by mountaineers. Moreover, it had rained heavily in the previous days and the rocks were wet.
Those who found Zsolt Török in the mountain abyss said he had no chance of survival as he had no equipment except for a climbing helmet. People who knew him say he would have never risked climbing difficult routes without taking safety measures, although danger is lurking around every corner in the mountains.
Zsolt Török is known for his impressive mountain climbing achievements both in Romania and abroad. He was considered one of the best technicians among climbers in Romania and always talked passionately about his hobby. His last big climbing expedition was in 2018, when Romania celebrated the Union Centennial, and when he managed to place Romania’s flag atop Pumori Peak at 7,165 meters altitude in the Himalayas and to identify a new route towards that peak for the first time.
Here is what Zsolt Török said at the time about the significance of his success: “I conveyed a short message of encouragement for climbers to think of me when they are in difficulty. It’s something symbolic for them to think of how I’ve overcome and I’m always overcoming obstacles and of how I have been keen on this professional mountain climbing job for 30 years.”
Mountain peaks and Romanian climbing are now poorer and sadder – shows the message of condolence conveyed by Zsolt Török’s colleagues and friends from the National Mountain Rescuers Dispatching Center. Romania’s interim interior minister Mihai Fifor also posted a message in memory of mountain climber Zsolt Török who would have turned 46 on September 29. (translation by L. Simion)