One of the greatest names in 20th Century mountaineering sadly passed away on the 6th August at his Piani Resinelli home near Lecco in Northern Italy.
Riccardo Cassin was born in San Vito al Tagliameto (Friuli) on the 2nd January 1909. Among his achievements are many routes in the Dolomites including the 1931 Cassin-dell'Oro Route on the Medale which may well be the most climbed limestone route in the entire Alpine chain.
In 1938 he travelled to Courmayeur just a few days after Heckmair and party had climbed the North Face of the Eiger. Crossing the Col du Geant he was 'directed' to the Grandes Jorasses and made the first ascent of the Walker Spur, which together with the Eiger had been one of the 'last great problems in the Alps'.
In the 1950s he began his exploration of the world's mountains: from the Karakoram to Alaska, and the Caucasus to the Andes. He was on the Italian reconnaissance expedition to K2, led the expedition that put Bonatti and Mauri on top of Gasherbrum IV, made the first ascent of the now coveted South Face of Denali, and the first ascent of Jirishanca's West Face.
Lindsay Griffin looks at a 'a shining example of a wonderful life truly dedicated to climbing' at www.thebmc.co.uk
Goodbye Riccardo Cassin by Vinicio Stefanello at planetmountain.com
Riccardo Cassin was a member of the Ragni della Grignetta group and honorary member of the International Academic Alpine Club, the Groupe Haute Montagne and the mountaineering clubs of Italy, the USA, Spain, Switzerland and France. He leaves behind 3 children, 7 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren.