Dino De Bernardin made the grim find as he walked in mountains close to his home, which had been the scene of bitter fighting between Italian and Austro-Hungarian troops between 1915 and 1917.
At an altitude of 2,800metres, his attention was drawn to a ‘bundle of rags’ that he saw emerging from the melting ice.
When he went to investigate, he was shocked to find the soldier’s skeleton complete with rotting boots.
Police were called to the scene just below a cable car station at Serauta close to Canazei in the Marmolada mountain range of the Dolomites in north-east Italy. Close to the border with Austria, the area is a popular ski resort in the winter.