Melting Glaciers Reveal Human Remains


Two bodies have been found in separate sites in Switzerland as the glaciers recede under high summer temperatures.  It follows the discovery of wreckage from a plane crash in 1968. NEW

Both discoveries were made in the Valais canton which contains the highest mountains in Switzerland.

In the first incident human remains were found on the Stockli glacier near the resort of Zermatt.

In the second incident two climbers from France found the human bones while on the Chessjen glacier.

They were discovered near a path that has rarely been used in recent years.

The remains have been airlifted from the glacier by helicopter.

“I was a little queasy,” said Luc Lechanoine, one of the mountaineers who discovered the corpse, to the Swiss newspaper Blick.

“We don’t know how long this person had been there. The clothes were neon colored and in the style of the 80s.”

He added that the body was mummified and slightly damaged “but still complete.”

The police are currently carrying out the identification process on the remains.

Since 1925 300 cases of people gone missing with their remains not found have been recorded by the authorities.

As glaciers melt, the remains of people disappeared decades ago can emerge from the ice.

  • In 2012 the remains of three brothers who disappeared in 1926 were found on the Aletsch glacier.
  • In 2017 the remains of a couple missing since 1942 were found on the Tsanfleuron glacier.
  • Last week debris from a plane that had crashed in 1968 was found on the Aletsch glacier by a mountain guide.

See here for the PlanetSKI report on the discovery of wreckage from the plane crash almost 55-years ago:

Aletsch glacier, Switzerland. Image © PlanetSKI

Aletsch glacier, Switzerland. Image © PlanetSKI

With August usually proving the biggest glacier melt and no sign to an end to the high summer temperatures it is expected that more discoveries will be made in the coming weeks.

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Image c/o PlanetSKI

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