One missing as avalanche hits Himlung expedition

KATHMANDU: At least a climbing Sherpa has gone missing after an avalanche struck one of the mountaineering expeditions on Himlung Himal (7,126 m) in western Nepal on Tuesday afternoon.

An official at the Department of Tourism confirmed that a climbing Sherpa was reportedly missing in the incident after the avalanche hit a team of climbers near Camp II of the Himlung Himal. The missing has been identified as Mingmar Sherpa of Taksindu -5, Solukhumbu.

“The fate of missing person is unknown,” officials at the Active Holiday Treks which locally manages the eight-member expedition said.

“Details of the incident have not been known yet.”

Efforts were underway to rescue the climbers from the incident site, an official at Active Holiday Treks said, adding that other members of the expedition were reportedly safe. “Ariel and ground searches will be conducted soon,” he added.

The DoT has issued at least 50 climbing permits representing five teams for Himlung expedition in the autumn season. “Nearly 100 climbers and their support staff have already reached the base camp to attempt to climb the mountain.”

Himlung Himal, which lies between Mt Manaslu and Mt Annapurna, was opened for climbing in 1992.

On Monday, at least three climbers also sustained minor injuries after a small avalanche hit them on Tukuche Himal (6,920 m).