Athol Whimp, a major figure in New Zealand's climbing and mountaineering history, died in a fall in Fiordland on the country's South Island last week. Whimp, 50, was known for establishing lightweight routes in the Himalaya and South America. In 1998, he won a Piolet d'Or, alpinism's highest award, for a first ascent of India's Thalay Sagar. Whimp was un-roped when he slipped and fell 800 meters on February 23 while climbing an easy but exposed route near Fiordland's Homer Saddle.
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