March 7, 1968|
Miercurea Ciuc, Romania
|Disappeared||May 21, 2013 (aged 45)|
|Children||Gerda Erőss (b. 2009), Csoma Erőss (b. 2011)|
|Website||Zsolt Erőss Mountaineering|
Zsolt Erőss (March 7, 1968 – May 21, 2013) was the most successful Hungarian high-altitude mountaineer, summiting 10 out of the 14 eight-thousanders. He was also the first Hungarian citizen to have climbed Mount Everest.
In 2010 he lost his right leg in an avalanche accident, requiring amputation below the knee. Soon after his recovery he returned to mountaineering, trying to summit the Cho Oyu in fall 2010. The expedition did not reach the top due to bad weather conditions, but later in May 2011 he successfully summited the Lhotse. After successfully scaling Kangchenjunga on May 20, 2013, he went missing in descent. Search missions were suspended on May 22. According to the expedition's leader and other experienced mountaineers, his survival is impossible.
He was born in Miercurea Ciuc (Csíkszereda), a town in Transylvania, Romania. He started mountain climbing in 1981 and climbed several Transylvanian mountains. He moved to Hungary in 1988 with his mother and brother, and became a Hungarian citizen in 1992. From 1989 he worked as an industrial alpinist. His first climb as the member of an expedition was in 1990 at the Elbrus. Afterward he climbed Pamir, Aconcagua and Kilimanjaro among others listed below. He was the member of the first and second Hungarian Mount Everest Expedition in 1996 and 2001, respectively, but couldn't reach the peak.
In 2002 he succeeded in climbing the Mount Everest as the first Hungarian citizen and second Hungarian overall (the first was Czechoslovak citizen Zoltán Demján in 1984). He was awarded the Order of Merit of the Hungarian Republic with the Officers' Cross. In early 2010 he suffered an accident in the Tatra mountains, which led to his right leg being amputated below the knee. He returned to climbing the same year using a prosthetic leg. Until his disappearance he climbed ten of the world's eight-thousanders, the last two with prosthetic leg.
On May 20, 2013, 18:00 he successfully summited Kangchenjunga together with his climbing partner, 26-year-old Péter Kiss. During the descent Erőss reported feeling weak and showed signs of exhaustion, falling behind by the rest of the summiteers. He spent the night presumably alone in the death zone but in the morning he was joined by Kiss, who in a highly unusual move climbed back up to help his partner, as reported around 9 am. They were seen descending slowly towards Camp 4, situated at 7600 m, but soon after Kiss fell and disappeared. Erőss' condition deteriorated rapidly, reporting vision problems, being unaware of Kiss' whereabouts and finally speaking incoherently. He sat down and slept a few hours, after which around 3:00 pm he reported feeling better and seemed to get back his strength to start moving down to Camp 4. Along the way he went missing, and was never seen again. Members of a Korean expedition, who also lost one of their members attempted to search for both Erőss and Kiss, but only Kiss' body could be spotted.
On May 22 it was announced that search for the climbers had been abandoned.
- 1999 - Nanga Parbat 8126 m in a new route (solo climb of the Mummery Rib, the glacier that lies between Ganalo Peak and Nanga Parbat)
- 2002 - Everest 8848 m
- 2003 - Gasherbrum II 8035 m
- 2006 - Dhaulagiri 8167 m
- 2007 - Hidden Peak 8068 m
- 2007 - Broad Peak 8047 m
- 2008 - Makalu 8481 m
- 2009 - Manaslu 8156 m
- 2011 - Lhotse 8516 m (with prosthetic leg)
- 2013 - Kangchenjunga 8586 m (with prosthetic leg)
Other notable climbs
- 1990 - Elbrus 5642 m 
- 1991 - Khan Tengri 6995 m, Pobeda peak 7439 m
- 1993 - Lenin Peak 7134 m
- 1994 - Pik 4 in Pamir Mountains 6400 m, Korzhenevskaya 7105 m, Communism Peak 7495 m, unnamed peak at 6200 m in Pamir, Tajikistan
- 1995 - attempt: Ogre (reached 7000 m)
- 1996 - 2 attempts for Everest (reached 8300 m)
- 1997 - south face of Satopanth till 7050 m
- 1999 - Ganalo Peak 6606 m
- 2000 - Distaghil Sar 7885 m, in new route
- 2001 - Aconcagua 6960 m
- 2003 - attempt for Hidden Peak in a new route (reached 8000 m)
- 2004 - Kilimanjaro 5895 m
- 2005 - attempt: K2 (reached 8300 m)
- 2010 - attempt: Cho-Oyu (reached 7100 m, with prosthetic leg)
- 2012 - attempt: Annapurna I (reached 7400 m, with prosthetic leg)
- Zsolt Erőss. "Rólam" (in Hungarian). Zsolt Erőss (hoparduc.hu). Retrieved 2012-05-05.
- "Conquering the peaks with artificial leg".
- "Hungarians on the Eight-thousanders".
- "Hungarian Mount Everest/Lhotse Expedition 2002". k2news.com. Retrieved 2010-05-24.
- "Amputee climber scales Himalayan peak".
- Kollár Lajos (2013-05-23). "Bele kell törődnünk" (in Hungarian). Himalája Expedíció. Retrieved 2013-05-23.
- Zsolt Erőss lost in the Himalayas. origo.hu
- Five perish in Kangchenjunga tragedy
- "Who is who in Climbing Expeditions". Retrieved 27 May 2011.
- Erőss, Zsolt (2002). A Békás-szorostól a Mount Everestig fotóalbum (in Hungarian). Kaposvári Nyomda Kft. ISBN 963-86275-6-5.
- Földes, András (2002). Erőss Zsolt, a Mount Everest első magyar megmászójának története (in Hungarian). Budapest: Jaffa Kiadó. ISBN 963-86275-5-7.