Published: Sat, October 13, 2018
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

SKorean climbers and 4 Nepalese guides missing in storm

SKorean climbers and 4 Nepalese guides missing in storm

"[A recovery team] could see the bodies of the climbers scattered near the camp". A storm destroyed their camp Friday evening, and two rescue helicopters were unable to land because of bad weather conditions on the mountain Saturday, police said.

Mr. Thapa said a ninth climber may also be missing. (They) fell off a cliff and died'.

Wangchu Sherpa, who heads the Trekking Camp Nepal agency, which organized the expedition, said the rescue operation will continue on Sunday due to poor weather conditions at the base camp.

Kim became the first person in the country and the fastest in the world to summit the world's 14 highest mountains without using supplementary oxygen in 2013.

A sixth South Korean national was staying in a village in the valley below the mountain when the powerful storm struck and survived, according to a local police report.

"Everything is gone, all the tents are blown apart".

A team that reached the site at 3 500 metres above sea level found seven bodies, Bir Bahadur Budha, deputy superintendent of police in Myagdi district, said.

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Expedition organisers raised the alarm after losing contact with the group, who set off on 7 October, for almost 24 hours.

"The fact that they were so low when it happened is unusual", said experienced German climber Billi Bierling, who was forced to call off her own summit bid on Dhaulagiri last month because of heavy snowfall and high winds.

Police officials say the remote area is hard to reach by foot and locals are still looking for the remaining climber yet to be recovered.

The previous year, 16 Sherpas were killed on Everest when an avalanche swept through the Khumbu Icefall during the busy Spring climbing season.

The area lies about 216 km northwest of Nepal's capital, Kathmandu.

Mount Gurja sits in Nepal's Annapurna region and is rarely climbed because of the risky conditions.

The climbers were attempting to scale the 7,193-metre (23,590-ft) peak during the autumn climbing season. No-one has stood on it's summit since 1996.

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