The backcountry ski and boarding community is in a state of shock with the news of the death of Graeme Nelson on Mt Feathertop yesterday.

The following are some clips from news stories on his death.

To my mind, having met and skied with Graeme, this comment from Treeski posted on the Backcountry Forum sums up my feelings this morning:

“looking out at feathertop today from hotham there’s a dark cloud sitting over the mountain as if in mourning for it’s fallen hero. RIP Graeme and thank you for inspiring us”.

Postings on the BC Forum highlight the depth of respect that we all held for Graeme. He was well liked,  and seen as being passionate about life and his many interests, and generous of spirit. His trip reports and backcountry knowledge – always willingly shared – were famous in the Forum. Go well, Graeme. Wishing all the best to his wife Janice and family in what must be a terribly sad time.

Eden doctor killed in Victorian skiing accident

BY AMANDA STROUD, writing in the Eden Magnet.
25 Aug, 2011 10:23 AM

Dr Graeme Nelson, the 56-year-old co-founder of the Curalo Medical Clinic in Eden, has been killed in a tragic accident while cross-country skiing near Mount Hotham in Victoria yesterday afternoon.

Dr Nelson is understood to have fallen down a 700 metre icy slope around 1.30pm.

His body was recovered late yesterday afternoon by Victorian police.

Dr Nelson’s wife and clinic co-founder, Dr Janice Nelson was at the medical clinic yesterday afternoon when she was contacted by Victorian police with the devastating news.

Colleague and friend of nearly 20 years Dr Michael Pentin was also at the clinic when the call came.

“We heard about it around 5.30pm last night.

“We were just dumbfounded.

“The clinic is a very morose place today, both the staff and the patients,” Dr Pentin said.

Graeme Nelson loved outdoor sport and was a keen surfer, bushwalker and skier.

“He liked cross country skiing over the more remote areas in Australia and has skied in the Himalayas recently,” Dr Pentin said.

“Graeme was a very experienced skier, both alpine and cross country skiing.

“He was also very keen on surfing- he was a very accomplished surfer – and bushwalking,” he said.

“He was doing what he loved doing, which is the only consoling thing.

“It’s a lesson to us all – to do things before it’s too late.

“He made the best of his time off, he always made the best of it,” Dr Pentin said.

Graeme and Janice Nelson moved to Eden in 1989 from Wonthaggi, Gippsland Victoria to establish the husband and wife practice which celebrated its 20th birthday in 2009.

The clinic is the only general practice in Eden and has been integral to developing local aged care.

Skier’s body recovered from Mt Feathertop
From Channel Nine.

NB: if you access the news report on this page about Graeme’s accident you will be forced to endure an ad for toothbrushes first. Channel 9 clearly doesn’t want a tragedy to get in the way of the profit imperative.

The body of a 57-year-old cross-country skier who went over a 700-metre drop on a Victorian mountain has been recovered.

The Eden man apparently lost control as he was skiing down Mt Feathertop in Victoria’s northeast.

The man’s body was located on the southeast side of the mountain, the state’s second highest, in the Alpine National Park about 1.20pm (AEST) on Wednesday, police said.

The Victoria Police helicopter retrieved the body late on Wednesday evening.

The Search and Rescue squad will return to the mountain on Thursday to examine the scene.

A report is being prepared for the coroner.

Graeme at Swindlers Shutes