A CLIMBER who lost his hands and feet in a tragedy 15 years ago is to attempt one of Europe’s most treacherous peaks.
Quadruple amputee Jamie Andrew will try to climb the Matterhorn in September this year.
The iconic 14,690ft peak on the Swiss-Italian border has claimed 500 lives since it was first conquered in 1865. Mr Andrew, from Bruntsfield, lost his hands and feet after becoming trapped on the north face of Les Droites in the Alps in 1999 – an incident which claimed the life of his friend Jamie Fisher.
The 43-year old, who uses specially-made metal prostheses, said: “The Matterhorn attempt is set to go ahead in September.” He will also prepare by taking on Excalibur – the tallest climbing wall in the world – in Groningen, Netherlands.
Scots mountaineer Sandy Allen, who has climbed the Matterhorn himself on several occasions, believes Mr Andrew will succeed.
He said: “It can be tricky, as there is a lot of loose rock, and you have to move quite fast to make it up and down in a day.
“For someone like Jamie it probably won’t be so bad. Jamie is amazing, and I don’t think he will have any hassle.
“He was a really good climber before his accident, and he just a very determined person with a lot of perseverance. He can do amazing things.”
Mr Andrew was 29 when he and Mr Fisher, both experienced climbers, became trapped by bad weather 12,000ft up.
Mr Fisher died just hours before the rescue helicopter reached them while Mr Andrew, who had fallen victim to severe frostbite, had to have his hands and feet amputated immediately.