Europe

Family holds funeral for Swiss climber Ueli Steck in Nepal

The family of famed Swiss climber Ueli Steck has held a funeral ceremony in Nepal following his death in a still-unexplained mountaineering accident near Mount Everest.

Steck spokesman Andreas Bantel announced that the family plans to take some of his ashes to Switzerland after Buddhist monks from the Tengboche Monastery lead a cremation ceremony Thursday.

Providing new details prior to Steck's death Sunday, Bantel said the 40-year-old originally planned to scale Everest's South Col a day after arriving at Camp 2 base camp. Instead, he opted to try Mount Nuptse after noting the "ideal" conditions there.

Steck entered the Lhotse flank but at around 7,600 meters (24,930 feet) hit trouble. Italian helicopter pilot Maurizio Folini recovered his body about 1,000 meters (3,280 feet) lower.

Local expedition leaders originally said Steck died at Camp 1.