Everest 2017: Looking Back Before We Look Forward.

Autor : Kraig Becker

The 2017 spring climbing season on Everest is about a month from getting underway at this point. The first teams will begin arriving in Kathmandu around the end of March, with more streaming into Nepal – and eventually Tibet – in the early days of April. For most, it will be a two-month long adventure, during which they will be attempting to reach the summit of the highest mountain on the planet. Right now, those climbers are putting the final touches on their preparation, organizing their gear, and starting to look ahead to the challenges to come. But, before we also look ahead to the season that is now fast approaching, it might be appropriate to first look back at seasons past.

Our friend Alan Arnette has been covering Everest for 15 years, and is now gearing up for the 2017 season as well. Over the past decade and a half, he has offered some of the best insights and commentary on the evolving climbing scene, which has undergone a lot of change since he penned his first blog. To start his coverage this year, Alan has written an excellent post in which he looks back at each of the seasons from 2010 through 2016.

If you follow Everest closely, you probably already know that some of those years were amongst the most unusual and tumultuous ever. For instance, 2013 was when the now infamous brawl took place on the Lhotse Face between a group of Sherpas and a team of prominent European climbers. At the time, that incident shocked the mountaineering community and sparked debates about who was wrong and who was right. The following two seasons, 2014 and 2015, were marred by tragedy with significant loss of life both years. Those seasons also ended abruptly, with climbers and Sherpas leaving the mountain.

To wrap up this blog post and set the scene for the season ahead, Alan has also posted his thoughts on what he thinks 2017 will be like. He predicts a record number of summits, but also expects disorganization on both the North and South Sides of the mountain. There will be more new operators guiding clients on Everest this year, many of whom will be inexperienced. Additionally, more climbers are also flocking to the Himalaya as prices for climbing continue to drop. That inexperience could show through as well.

The article, which you can read in full here, is a good introduction to the current climate on Everest. It also sets the stage nicely for what is to come. In a few short weeks, I’ll begin my regular Everest coverage as well, and as usual it promises to be another interesting year.

* source: –Everest 2017: Looking Back Before We Look Forward

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30th anniversary of the first Annapurna winter ascent.

On 3 February 1987, Polish climbers Jerzy Kukuczka and Artur Hajzer made the first winter ascent of Annapurna I.

Jerzy kukuczka – climbing season 1987

1987 — Annapurna I – first winter ascent

After his early November climb on Manaslu, Jurek and Artur Hajzer summited Annapurna North Face on February 3, 1987. Hajzer returned to the mountains with Kukuczka already in September that same year. That’s when they made a first ascent of the East Ridgeon Shisha Pangma (Summit on September 18, 1987).

* source: – http://winterclimb.com/climbing-base/item/3-jerzy-kukuczka

Artur HajzerJerzy Kukuczka’s partner

When you look for a phrase to describe Artur Hajzer, one of the first that comes to mind is ‘Jurek Kukuczka’s partner.’ Even though their first expedition was not successful, after Lhotse Hajzer felt much more secure.

Artur Hajzer, Wanda Rutkiewicz i Jerzy Kukuczka, Annapurna 1987

Artur Hajzer, Wanda Rutkiewicz and Jerzy Kukuczka, Annapurna 1987

“I started believing in myself. I realised that my first steps were analogous to what Jurek had been doing a few years back. Eventually, I felt convinced that the Lhotse failure had not determined it all and the next time – as proven by Jurek’s career – would be better,” Hajzer recalled years later. And it was better, together with Jerzy Kukuczka.

“How about going on an expedition with me? I need a partner. How about that?”

“I am all for it, on spec”, answered Elephant to Kukuś.

“It was very elevating to Artur, he was very pleased. Jurek Kukuczka offered Artur that if he had organised an expedition to Manaslu and a winter expedition to Annapurna, they would climb together. And so it happened, and that is the reason Artur decided not to go with us to climb K2 via the Magic Line route,” recalls Janusz Majer.

“The Manaslu (8,156m) expedition was the most difficult of all our – mine and Jurek’s – successful expeditions. It took place in autumn 1986. We were to attempt the south face of Annapurna (8,091m) in the same season,” wrote Hajzer. On 03 February 1987 they made their first winter ascent together to the summit of an eight-thousander.

Another expedition they went on together was a summer expedition to Shishapangma in August 1987, during which they established a new route on the western ridge. The same year, Artur made another attempt on the south face of Lhotse during an international expedition organised by Krzysztof Wielicki. The expedition was a failure. In 1988, he accompanied Jurek Kukuczka, this time ascending the west Annapurna via a new route. A year later he returned for the third time to the south face of Lhotse. That time, the international expedition was organised by the Kukuczka’s ‘greatest rival’ – Rainhold Messner.

“After that expedition I came to a conclusion that another attempt would be a waste of time,” Artur writes in Attack of Despair. That is why he did not join Kukuczka during his attempt.

“It was clear that Artur had equalled his master and his own ambition took the floor. He wanted to bring his own mountaineering projects to life,” recalls Janusz Majer.

….. more – Artur Hajzer – Ice Leader.

** see also:

–   Jerzy Kukuczka – famous Polish climber /Version polish and english/

–   Polish famous climbers – The golden decade of Polish Himalayan mountaineering.

Winter Manifesto of Krzysztof Wielicki – Manifest zimowy Krzysztofa Wielickiego /Version polish and english/

Polish winter expedition to K2, 2002/3 /Version polish and english/

Ice Warriors not give up – HiMountain winter expedition to Broad Peak – 2008/09. HiMountain wyprawa zimowa Broad Peak – 2008/09. /Version english and polish/

Polish-Italian winter expedition to Shisha Pangma (8027m), 2005 /Version polish and english/

Polish winter expedition 1980 – First winter ascent of Everest, part 1

Polish winter expedition 1980 – First winter ascent of Everest, part 2

Polish winter expedition 1980 – First winter ascent of Everest, part 3

Polish winter expedition 1980 – First winter ascent of Everest, part 4

… the first winter ascent of the south face of annapurna i, 1987-1988
https://www.himalayanclub.org/…/the-firstwinterascent-of-the-so…

Annapurna I : Climbing, Hiking & Mountaineering : SummitPost
http://www.summitpost.org/annapurna-i/150258

Jerzy Kukuczka Ascents :

Alps

1973, 19 July – Aiguille du Moine. First polish ascent on Aureille-Fentren Route. Team: Jerzy Kukuczka, Marek Łukaszewski.

1973, 22 July – La Pell, Massiw Vercors. First polish ascent on Parish Route. Team: Jerzy Kukuczka, Marek Łukaszewski.

1973, 6 August – Mont Blanc, E Face. Major Route. Team: Beata Kozłowska, Jerzy Kukuczka, Janusz Kurczab, Marek Łukaszewski.

1973, 12-14 August – Petit Dru, new route. Team: Jerzy Kukuczka, Wojciech Kurtyka, Marek Łukaszewski.

1975, 3-4 August – Grandes Jorasses, N Face. New Route. Team: Jerzy Kukuczka, Wojciech Kurtyka, Marek Łukaszewski.

Continue reading

Artur Hajzer – Ice Leader.

hajzer-portretIs winter Himalayan mountaineering possible without Artur Hajzer? “Well, they say ‘in for a penny, in for a pound.’ There is a will to finish it, an urge to confirm the Polish leadership in this discipline. It is a wonderful idea and I am making it happen with passion,” he used to say. Although the Gasherbrum expedition, during which he died, took place outside of the Polish Winter Himalayan Mountaineering Project 2010-2015 (Polski Himalaizm Zimowy – PHZ), it had been well known that he went there to build up his stamina for the remaining summits which have not been climbed in winter yet. He was one of the youngest Ice Warriors and has become the eternally young Ice Leader. This article, written by Jagoda Mytych, was originally published in “n.p.m.” magazine in September 2013.

hajzer-phz

“Everyone knows one of his faces, one or a few,” wrote Izabela Hajzer about her husband and best friend. And in fact, you could really separate Artur Hajzer’s resume into a number of people. He was a top quality climber with seven eight-thousanders to his name, a successful businessman, the founding father and chief executive of a project which made the Poles start climbing eight-thousanders in winter again. Even if not all the goals he had set were accomplished successfully, he never gave up. He was well known for his endurance and perseverance as well as his wittiness and willingness to share his knowledge and experience.

Artur died on 07 July 2013 while retreating from Gasherbrum I, one of the two eight-thousanders he had planned to ascend this year to “keep fit and stay in touch with the altitude in case another winter expedition was about to take place in the coming years.” We bid him farewell on 24 July in the arch-cathedral in Katowice, the same church, in which 24 years earlier another service had been performed to commemorate Jerzy Kukuczka. Janusz Majer, not only Artur’s business partner for many years but also a friend, gave a moving speech during the funeral service.

While I was working on this text, he told me: “Everyone knows one of his faces. Just so. I think I knew them all. When you work together, there are many reasons to end friendship, but we made it. We went through a lot of twists and turns.”

Snow Elephant

Artur was born on 28 June 1962 in Silesia. He graduated from the University of Katowice with a degree in Cultural Studies but since he was a teenager, he had been active in the Silesian mountaineering circles where he had been nicknamed ‘Elephant’. When he was 14 years of age, he started climbing with the Tatra Scout Club. At the age of 16, he finished the climbing course in the Tatra mountains, so called ‘Betlejemka’. His sporty attitude could already be seen at that time. He climbed Kazalnica Mięguszowska via many routes, Ganek and other faces, and a few difficult routes in the Alps in the Mont Blanc massif, including Petit Dru and Mont Blanc du Tacul.

Mont Blanc 1981 - z arch. Artura Hajzera

Mont Blanc 1981

hajzer-mlody

Artur Hajzer’s later climbing career was closely linked to the Mountaineering Club in Katowice, which at that time was called “the best Himalayan mountaineering club in the world’, as it was the place where Jerzy Kukuczka, Krzystof Wielicki and Ryszard Pawłowski had actively been involved.

“We were one large family in the club. Our lives revolved around the club. We did not only spent time climbing rocks or mountaineering but worked together, partied together and went to concerts together. Artur was a significant individual in the club. He was one of the promising young who did not end up as ‘promising’ but actually achieved a lot by the age of 30,” recalls Janusz Majer, who had been the chairman of the club in Katowice since 1980 and is its honorary member at present.

hajzer-anorak

Hajzer was not only an above-average climber but also a savvy and talented … tailor. He would sew everything for himself and his fellow climbers, from harnesses and backpacks to articles of clothing and down jackets. It was an invaluable experience, taking into account the fact that he was then one of the pioneers of the Polish outdoors industry. He was also familiar with painting – especially at high altitude.

Artur reminisced the summer of 1982 in his book Attack of Despair. “Every day was the same. We did not let the paint rollers out of our hands from dawn till dusk. Fortunately, we spent weekends climbing rocks in the Polish Jurassic Highland, mastering our climbing form. We did not know then which mountains we were about to be tested in.”

And the same year, at the age of 20, with a trip to Rolwaling Himal region, Artur began his Himalayan adventure. The following year, he took part in an expedition to Tirich Mir (7,706m), the highest mountain of the Hindu Kush range. In 1985, he made his first attempt on the south face of Lhotse. The club expedition had already been at Camp V, when it was joined by another member of the Katowice circles – Jerzy Kukuczka.

Artur Hajzer i Rafał Hołda, Kathmandu 1982, z archi. Artura Hajzera

Artur Hajzer with Rafał Chołda, Kathmandu 1982

Regrettably, although Hajzer met his idol and future climbing partner, he lost his current partner, Rafał Chołda, who died climbing Lhotse. Artur wrote that “from the very first moment they tied and shared a rope, they walked the same path.” The expedition was unsuccessful. Almost immediately afterwards, he set out on another one – a winter expedition to climb Kangchenjunga. He reached the summit again and again faced death in the mountains. This time it was Andrzej Czok who lost his life.

Jerzy Kukuczka’s partner

When you look for a phrase to describe Artur Hajzer, one of the first that comes to mind is ‘Jurek Kukuczka’s partner.’ Even though their first expedition was not successful, after Lhotse Hajzer felt much more secure.

Artur Hajzer, Wanda Rutkiewicz i Jerzy Kukuczka, Annapurna 1987

Artur Hajzer, Wanda Rutkiewicz and Jerzy Kukuczka, Annapurna 1987

“I started believing in myself. I realised that my first steps were analogous to what Jurek had been doing a few years back. Eventually, I felt convinced that the Lhotse failure had not determined it all and the next time – as proven by Jurek’s career – would be better,” Hajzer recalled years later. And it was better, together with Jerzy Kukuczka.

“How about going on an expedition with me? I need a partner. How about that?”

“I am all for it, on spec”, answered Elephant to Kukuś.

“It was very elevating to Artur, he was very pleased. Jurek Kukuczka offered Artur that if he had organised an expedition to Manaslu and a winter expedition to Annapurna, they would climb together. And so it happened, and that is the reason Artur decided not to go with us to climb K2 via the Magic Line route,” recalls Janusz Majer.

“The Manaslu (8,156m) expedition was the most difficult of all our – mine and Jurek’s – successful expeditions. It took place in autumn 1986. We were to attempt the south face of Annapurna (8,091m) in the same season,” wrote Hajzer. On 03 February 1987 they made their first winter ascent together to the summit of an eight-thousander.

Another expedition they went on together was a summer expedition to Shishapangma in August 1987, during which they established a new route on the western ridge. The same year, Artur made another attempt on the south face of Lhotse during an international expedition organised by Krzysztof Wielicki. The expedition was a failure. In 1988, he accompanied Jurek Kukuczka, this time ascending the west Annapurna via a new route. A year later he returned for the third time to the south face of Lhotse. That time, the international expedition was organised by the Kukuczka’s ‘greatest rival’ – Rainhold Messner.

“After that expedition I came to a conclusion that another attempt would be a waste of time,” Artur writes in Attack of Despair. That is why he did not join Kukuczka during his attempt.

“It was clear that Artur had equalled his master and his own ambition took the floor. He wanted to bring his own mountaineering projects to life,” recalls Janusz Majer.

On 24 October 1989, Jerzy Kukuczka fell of the south face of Lhotse and died. Artur Hajzer gave up climbing for a long time.

“It took me 15 years to get over it,” that is all he told me about that incident and switched off for a while. He looked as if he was not talking about something in the past but processing news that had just arrived. When he returned to Lhotse under the Polish Winter Himalayan Mountaineering Project, he said that it was ‘a conversation with ghosts.’

Rescuing and rescued

1989 was as equally tragic to Polish Himalayan mountaineering as 2013. In 1989, five eminent climbers died in an avalanche on Lho La pass while climbing Mount Everest: Eugeniusz Chrobak (expedition leader), Zygmunt Andrzej Heinrich, Mirosław ‘Falco’ Dąsal, Wacław Otręba and Mirosław Gardzielewski. The only survivor was Andrzej Marciniak, suffering from snow blindness while awaiting rescue. Hajzer was in Kathmandu at that time. With no hesitation he set about organising a complicated rescue mission from China, as it was the only possible way.

“At that time, people were protesting in Tiananmen Square. Borders were tightly shut. The American Embassy needed to exert pressure. To organise the rescue mission was probably more difficult than to pull it off. But I got instructed by Janusz Majer that either I would do something or it was done and dusted. In such moments, there is really no room to debate, or it is all over,” recalled Artur Hajzer.

“It seemed to me that Artur was the only person able to organise a rescue missions under those complicated circumstances. Even though there were excellent climbers in the base camp, it was impossible to approach from our side because of the avalanche danger. The only option left was unconventional. It was a challenge to Artur, the quintessence of his way of life. He started acting immediately. He was talking to Messner. Messner was talking to the Italian ambassador who was playing tennis with the Russian ambassador the following day. It was all about getting to the Chinese and get their permission for the mission,” said Janusz Majer.

Akcja ratunkowa po Andrzeja Marciniaka, 1989, z archi. A. Hajzera

Akcja ratunkowa po Andrzeja Marciniaka, 1989, z archi. A. Hajzera

For a daring rescue mission on Mount Everest Artur received the Polish Olympics Committee Fair Play Award. 20 years later, Andrzej Marciniak died while climbing in the Tatras. When Hazjer was asked about it, he emphasised that the most important aspect of it was that he had managed to give him those extra 20 years.

Not only did Hajzer recue people but was also rescued by them. In 2005, on Broad Peak, he broke his leg at almost 8,000m. Piotr Pustelnik, who was climbing with him then, led the rescue mission. In February 2008, he was taken by an avalanche on the south ridge of Ciemniak in the west Tatras. He managed to stay close to the surface and thanks to a well-organized TOPR mission, he was rescued unscathed and even got a reputation of ‘always landing on his feet.’ For walking outside of the designated tourist route, the Tatra National Park board of directors gave him a symbolic disciplinary warning.

Lawina na Ciemniaku 2008

Hajzer rescued by TOPR from avalanche, Ciemniak, 2008.

“February 2008, the Tatras. Objective: to traverse the entire Tatra ridge non-stop. I am walking with three experienced Himalayan mountaineers. I feel safe. We are in our twenty second hour of walking, we are ascending Ciemniak. Artur is first and suddenly disappears. Panic stations – Piotrek is trying to get reception and notify TOPR. Darek is going downhill. Done, TOPR is notified, they are coming. Hearing the helicopter, we walk slowly down in silence. Minutes are passing. And then I got a text message from Artur: I am alive. My first thought: Artur, you are invincible. That thought is with me today as well,” recalls Tamara Styś, a Himalayan mountaineer.

Businessman

After 1989, he withdrew from active climbing and together with Janusz Majer took to business, which gave birth to a brand that became cult in the 90s – Alpinus.

“After Everest, Artur came up with this idea of 14 eight-thousanders in a year. We were supposed to have one million dollars to do it. We were sorting out permissions. The entire organisation process was well advanced. We even had business cards. In autumn 1989, when Jurek was on Lhotse, Artur and I went to lSPO to look for a sponsor for our project. We talked to a number of people, including Albrecht von Dewitz, the founder of Vaude, a huge German outdoor brand. Eventually, we did not get a sponsor for our Himalayan project but a business partner,” says Janusz Majer. “First, we sewed for Vaude and then directly for Alpinus. From Vaude we got the know-how. Our advantage was that we knew the product inside out. Our products were known to be of good quality. Even today I meet people wearing our jackets made in the 90s,” he adds.

High quality materials, advanced technologies and, at the same time, limited interest of the Polish people in the outdoor market resulted in financial difficulties of the company, leading to its bankruptcy. The founders were not put off, though. Hajzer and Majer’s new project was another brand which was more affordable to the customer. HiMountain products are visible almost everywhere in the Polish mountains.

“We had already had experience gained during the liquidation of our first enterprise, so when we were creating HiMountain, we were trying to eliminate the root causes of our previous failure. But we had never given up on quality. Artur was very creative at work and kept following all current market trends. He knew how to build a team and come up with new projects which would attract people to participate in their implementation,” says Janusz Majer.

After 15 years in business, Artur realised that ‘he could not live peacefully without mountains.‘ He returned to climbing in 2005. First, almost instantly, he went to climb Broad Peak with Piotr Pustelnik and then Dhaulagiri with Robert Szymczak.

Winter expeditions leader

Artur’s business approach can be traced in the way the Polish Winter Himalayan Mountaineering Project 2010-2015 functions, which, according to Artur Hajzer, has been born out of a need to convince PZA to fund expeditions in the highest mountains.

“The fact that the project exists depends 90% on office and managerial work and one day I should really write what it looks like from behind the desk,” Artur used to joke.

And it looked like this. On 14 November 2009, 3 potential Himalayan mountaineers showed up in his office: Arek Grządziel, Jacek Czech and Irek Waluga. The next day was the deadline for funding applications.

“We knew PZA would not give a penny for a regular route climb, even in winter, if the success were not guaranteed. Robert Szymczak and I had just been refused financial support for a winter Broad Peak expedition 2008/2009. It was then when I came up with this idea that I would draft a project which would not be about climbing via regular routes but winter expeditions in the years to come,” recalled Hajzer.

The seed took root and in May 2010, already under the Polish Winter Himalayan Mountaineering Project 2010-2015, an expedition was organised to climb Nanga Parbat. Artur reached the summit with Robert Szymczak and during the second attack, Marcin Kaczan, one of the younger members of the team, ascended to the summit. ‘The young’ proved themselves again during the Elbrus Race. Andrzej Bargiel and Ola Dzik finished the race in record time. Continue reading

Extremalna noc w górach z Andrzejem Bargielem.

Jak co roku do orkiestrowych aukcji internetowych zaprosiliśmy znane osoby.
Na nasz apel odpowiedział również – Andrzej Bargiel.

WOŚP w jego imieniu wystawiamy na licytację:

Ekstremalną noc w górach z Andrzejem Bargielem.

Andrzej Bargiel-najlepszy narciarz extremalny. Trzykrotny mistrz Polski w skialpiniźmie, trzeci w klasyfikacji generalnej pucharu świata, rekordzista świata w biegu na Elbrus oraz pierwszy Polak, któremu w 2013 r. udało się zjechać z ośmiotysięcznika Shishapangma na nartach z wierzchołka. W rekordowym czasie wszedł i zjechał z ośmiotysięcznika Manaslu oraz zjechał na nartach ż ośmiotysięcznika Broad Peak.

Jako pierwszy człowiek na świecie Zdobywca Śnieżnej Pantery w rekordowym czasie!

Jedyna taka okazja, by spędzić noc w górach z Andrzejem w namiocie, który towarzyszy mu podczas wypraw w najwyższe góry świata. Na własnej skórze można będzie poczuć dreszcz emocji oraz nauczyć się jak biwakować w górach. Taka okazja zdarza się tylko raz!

… więcej na stronie : – AUKCJA : Extremalna noc w górach z Andrzejem Bargielem

*

* see also –https://himalman.wordpress.com/category/gocc/
Continue reading

Three Female Nepali Climbers Announce Kangchenjunga Expedition for Spring.

Autor :  Kraig Becker

Three of the most famous women climbers from Nepal have announced their next big expedition, and true to form they’re going after one of the highest mountains on the planet. Back in 2014, Maya Sherpa, Dawa Yangzum Sherpa, and Pasang Lhamu Sherpa drew accolades from the mountaineering community when they summited K2, which was an impressive addition to their resume which already included an Everest climb in 2007. Now, with the two highest mountains in the world already under their belt, they’ll turn their attention to the third tallest – Kangchenjunga.

The expedition is set to take place this spring, with the goal of reaching the summit in April or May. The ladies are hoping to become the first Nepali women’s expedition to scale that mountain, which to date has seen just nine female ascents, all made by foreigners.

Kangchenjunga, which sees very little traffic in general, has only been summited a total of 344 times since it was first climbed on May 25, 1955. It is a technically challenging ascent that is usually made all the more difficult due to unpredictable weather conditions.

The ladies say they are climbing the mountain not to just establish a new record for Nepali women, but also to raise awareness of climate change and demonstrate that the mountains in their home country are safe. Since the earthquake back in 2015, tourism and climbing expeditions have been down, impacting the economy there. That is expected to change this year as climbers begin to return in larger numbers, and trekkers make their way back into the Himalaya as well.

It should be fun to follow this trio come spring, when the big mountains in Nepal will be very busy with some interesting expeditions. We’re still three months away from the start of the spring climbing season, but it is already shaping up to be a good one. For now though, we’ll continue to keep an eye on the developing winter climbs, which are mostly just getting underway.

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Best of Himalman’s Weblog.

1.Best pictures:

everest.jpg

Everest – photo by Ryszard Pawłowski – Polish International Mt Everest expedition 99

polish_international_mt_everest_expedition99_415.jpg
Everest – photo by Ryszard Pawłowski – Polish International Mt Everest expedition 99

2 Best post on my site :

Polish famous climbers – The golden decade of Polish Himalayan mountaineering.

30 rocznica zimowego wejścia na Mt. Everest: droga do sukcesu.

How Much Does It Cost To Climb Mt. Everest?

* Read these stories – and more! – at ExplorersWeb.com

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Latest Headlines – avalanche killed 19 climbers and Sherpas.

An earthquake-triggered avalanche slammed into hundreds of tents at … least 61 people injured and a total of 19 climbers and Sherpas dead.

1. Mount Everest avalanche triggered by Nepal earthquake kills 18: reports

Updated 26 Apr 2015, 12:32am

An Indian army mountaineering team has found 18 bodies on Mount Everest, an army spokesman said, after a massive earthquake in Nepal unleashed an avalanche on the world’s tallest mountain at the start of the main climbing season.

The earthquake hit Nepal and north India on Saturday afternoon, killing more than 1,300 people and collapsing buildings in Kathmandu.

Nepal’s Tourism Ministry could only confirm 10 deaths, but spokesman Gyanendra Shrestha said the death toll could rise, and that the avalanche had buried part of the base camp.

He said two tents at the camp had been filled with the injured.

More than 1,000 climbers had gathered there at the start of the climbing season, including about 400 foreigners.

One of those killed was Dan Fredinburg, a Google engineer based in California.

He died as a result of head injuries when the avalanche hit, according to a statement from the mountaineering company that had taken him to base camp.

Climbers on the world’s highest mountain have pleaded for help, saying an avalanche has destroyed camps and sent slabs of ice crashing in a “huge disaster”.

“An avalanche from Mt Pumori has hit the base camp, burying a part of it,” Nepalese tourism official Gyanendra Shrestha said.

“We don’t have the details yet, but 10 have been reported dead so far, including foreign climbers.”

“We are trying to assess how many are injured. There might be over 1,000 people there right now, including foreign climbers and Nepalese supporting staff.”

Romanian climber Alex Gavan said on Twitter that there had been a “huge avalanche” and “many, many” people were up on the mountain.

“Running for life from my tent. Everest base camp huge earthquake then huge avalanche,” he said.

“Huge disaster. Helped searched and rescued victims through huge debris area. Many dead. Much more badly injured. More to die if not heli asap,” he later tweeted.

Another climber, Daniel Mazur, said Everest base camp had been “severely damaged” and his team was trapped.

“Please pray for everyone,” he said on his Twitter page.

Carsten Lillelund Pedersen, a Danish climber, said about 40 people were being treated in a makeshift hospital at a tent at base camp.

He said many of those injured had back injuries from being hit by rocks and ice when running from the avalanche.

The poor visibility after the first avalanche meant it was “difficult to see the following avalanches, and there are so many – maybe one every five minute – that I have stopped counting”, Mr Pedersen said on Facebook.

* more…

* see also :

1. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/apr/12/mount-everest-sherpa-disaster-one-year-on

2. www.cnn.com/2014/04/18/world/asia/nepal-everest-avalanche/

3. www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-27075638

4. www.cbsnews.com/…/earthquake-triggered-avalanche-kills-sherpa…

5. http://www.alanarnette.com/blog/2016/02/01/everest-2016-welcome-to-everest-2016-coverage/

*

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