A British tourist climbing in the Austrian Alps has died after falling 90 metres from a ladder dubbed the “stairway to heaven”.
The 42-year-old was climbing the Dachstein Mountains, part of the Northern Limestone Alps, when he fell from a ladder to his death.
The man was reportedly scaling the ladder alone.
Two helicopter crews rushed to the scene but the man was unable to be saved.
Rescuers retrieved his body from the gully beneath the ladder. Third-party negligence has been ruled out, with authorities stating that the climber was entirely alone at the time of the accident. The identity of the man has not been released.
A spokesperson stressed the incident was an “accident”.
The site is one of the most renowned spots for the perfect Instagram photos.
The ladder, run by Inter-sport, is referred to as Via-Ferrata – Italian for “iron way” – and many climbers refer to it as the “stairway to heaven”.
The ladder is promoted as the “new TOP attraction on the Zwieselalm for climbing enthusiasts” by the Dachstein region tourist website, which explains the climb is attempted in four stages with the ladder waiting “as the ultimate adrenaline kick”.
The identity of the man has not been released.
UK media outlet Metro reported on the tragedy. This area is popular among tourists seeking picturesque Instagram photos. The aerial ladder, known locally as the “stairway to heaven” rises sharply in the Dachstein Mountains outside Salzburg.
The Dachstein Region tourist website notes: “The Panorama-ladder with its 40 meters is the new TOP attraction for all fans of via Ferratas. The via ferrata on the Donnerkogel at the Zwieselalm in Gosau at Dachstein presents amazing and breathtaking views of the glacier of the Dachstein, as well as of the highest mountain of Austria - the Grobglockner. The Ladder to heaven was built by Outdoor Leadership with their professional climber Heli Putz,” the description on the website reads.
However, it is stressed the ladder is for “experienced climbers” only.
It is rated as a moderate/difficult climb and is not recommended for beginners.