Alaska News

Climber from New Jersey dies near summit of Denali


A climber died after collapsing on Denali while trying to reach its summit Friday evening, according to national park officials.

Denali National Park and Preserve officials identified the man Saturday as 48-year-old Fernando Birman from Stockton, New Jersey.

Birman had climbed to about 19,700 feet on the 20,310-foot mountain when he collapsed, park officials said in a statement. His mountain guides attempted to resuscitate him using CPR, but he never regained a pulse, according to officials. Birman was pronounced dead at the scene.

His cause of death is still being investigated but is consistent with sudden cardiac arrest, park officials said.

Recovery of Birman’s body was made from a 19,500-foot plateau known as the Football Field, according to park officials.

Birman was part of a 12-member guided tour that began their ascent on May 22, said Sharon Stiteler, a spokesperson for Denali National Park.

There have been 129 climbing deaths at the park since 1932, Stiteler said.

Material from the Associated Press was used in this report.