Tom Ballard (climber)

Tom Ballard
Personal information
Born16 October 1988 (1988)
Belper, Derbyshire, England
Died24 February – 9 March 2019 (2020) (aged 30)
Nanga Parbat, Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan
Climbing career
Type of climberAlpine, greater ranges, mixed, dry-tooling, traditional
Known forFirst solo winter ascent of the six major alpine north faces in a single season
First ascentsA line above the sky (D15), Dolomites

Tom Ballard (born 16 October 1988; died 24 February – 9 March 2019) was a British rock climber and alpinist, best known for being the first mountaineer to climb the six major alpine north faces solo in a single winter season.[1] In February 2019, Ballard disappeared during bad weather on an expedition to Nanga Parbat, Pakistan. His body was discovered on the mountain's Mummery Spur on 9 March 2019.[2]

Early life

Ballard was born in Belper, Derbyshire, in 1988,[3] the son of mountaineers Jim Ballard and Alison Hargreaves, who achieved fame both as the first female solo ascensionist of Mount Everest, and for completing the first solo ascents of the six alpine north faces in a single summer season. His mother died in a climbing accident on K2 on 13 August 1995.[4][5] Ballard also had one sister, Kate.

In 1995, Ballard's family moved near to Fort William, Scotland, before relocating to the Alps in 2009, and then Val di Fassa in the Dolomites.[5][6][7] In Val di Fassa he met his fiancée Stefania Pederiva, daughter of alpine guide Bruno Pederiva.[8]

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