THE EAGLE – He was descending on mountaineering skis from the summit of Gran Sasso, the Corno Grande, along the Bissolati canal, at an altitude of 2,700 metres, when, for reasons yet to be ascertained, he lost control of his skis and fell about fifty meters down the winding and steep descent, strewn with rocks and ice. He died like that Fabio Racanella52-year-old mountaineering instructor from Orvieto, who adds his life to the already long trail of deaths in the mountains of Abruzzo: in fact, last year there were nine victims recorded, the last in November on the Maiella, while on the Gran Sasso in September there were two deaths, to which must be added a miraculous boy, struck by lightning on the descent towards Campo Imperatore but survived.
This time the alarm was raised by other skiers with whom it seems he had made an appointment at the summit of Corno Grande and who witnessed the tragedy. The 118 rescue services that took off from Teramo by helicopter were useless. The doctor on board could do nothing but ascertain the death of the ski mountaineer.
A risky ascent according to the experts: the recent heavy snowfalls following the rain and temperatures finally returning to spring would have discouraged the use of skis at high altitudes as confirmed by the head of the Abruzzo guides: “I’m climbing on the Amalfi Coast, because I know well now, up there, it’s not the time to go – he explained David Di Giosafatte, president of the Alpine guides of Abruzzo – because the weather forecast didn’t predict anything good. In fact, there have been important rainfalls recently and in these cases special attention is needed: we are at the end of the season, the temperatures are rising, by midday at the latest you have to be safe precisely because of the instability of the snow due to the heat”. added the head of the Guides. “The season is now ‘gone’, I repeat to everyone, to do those things. Now it’s too risky, plus there was a big avalanche in the Conca degli Invalidi, which testifies to the danger of the mountain”.
And when we talk about avalanches on the Gran Sasso, the tragedy of Rigopiano cannot fail to come to mind, when a massive mass of snow, trees and rocks overwhelmed the hotel in 2017, killing 29 guests of the luxurious resort. The ski mountaineer’s body was then transported to the Teramo morgue for ritual eventualities.
The local prosecutor’s office is investigating the incident. Racanella was a mountaineering instructor, a great connoisseur of the mountains and a member of the Cai. In Orvieto many knew his great passion for sport and the mountains. A passion that also emerges from his Facebook profilewhere he had published several photos with mountain landscapes, even in snowy landscapes, with skis on.