Andrzej Zawada

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Andrzej Zawada during the Mount Everest winter expedition (1980)

Andrzej Zawada, born: Maria Andrzej Zawada, (16 July 1928 in Olsztyn – 21 August 2000 in Warsaw) was a Polish Alpinist and Tatra Mountains climber, pioneer of winter Himalayism. Organiser and leader in numerous high-mountains expeditions. Author of movies and photographs from expeditions, co-author of Alpinist books. Honorary member of the British Alpine Club, French Groupe de Haute Montagne and The Explorers Club.

Grandson of Tomasz Rawicz-Zawada young participant of January Uprising in 1863. Son of Filip Rawicz Zawada, Polish legionnaire and consul.

Zawada studied physics and geophysics in Wrocław and Warsaw. Received an engineer's degree seismologist. In the years 1955-1993 he worked at the Institute of Geophysics Polish Academy of Sciences.

Amongst climbers he is known for his phrase: "Tell me, what you did in the winter in the Tatras, and i'll tell you what you're climber".



  • In 1959 he was a leader to a first winter crossing through the whole main ridge of Tatra Mountains, which took 19 days.
  • In 1971, as chief he led the Polish expedition to make the first ascent to the Khunyang Chhish (7852 m) in the Karakoram. He also reached the summit.
  • With Tadeusz Piotrowski he made the first winter ascent of Noshaq (7492 m) in the Hindu Kush (13 February 1973). It was the world's first winter climb above 7,000 m.
  • In 1974 as the first man in the world has exceeded the height of 8000 meters in the winter (25 December 1974, with Zygmunt Andrzej Heinrich, reached a height of 8250m on Lhotse).
  • In 1977 Zawada made the first crossing the 1600-meter north wall of Koh-i Mandaras (6631 m).
  • In February 1980 Krzysztof Wielicki and Leszek Cichy made the first winter ascent of Mount Everest (8848 m), the highest mountain on Earth. Zawada led the expedition. It was the first ascent in winter of a peak above 8,000 m.
  • In May 1980 Andrzej Czok and Jerzy Kukuczka ascent Everest new route. Zawada led the expedition.
  • In February 1985 Maciej Berbeka and Maciej Pawlikowski made the first winter ascent of Cho Oyu. It is the only winter ascent on eight-thousander made a new route. Zawada led the expedition.
  • On 31 December 1988 Krzysztof Wielicki made the first winter ascent of Lhotse. Zawada led the expedition.


  • Marcinek, Kazimierz; Zawada, Andrzej (1973). Ostatni atak na Kunyang Chhish (in Polish). Warsaw: Wydawnictwo Sport i Turystyka. OCLC 7233551. 


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