Heavy Snow Hampers Search For Missing S. Korean, Nepal Trekkers
Faizan Hashmi 1 month ago Sun 19th January 2020 | 02:50 PM
Kathmandu, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 19th Jan, 2020 ) :Heavy snow, chilling winds and poor visibility hampered the search Sunday for four South Koreans and three Nepalis caught in an avalanche in the popular Annapurna region of the Himalayas, officials said.
Relatives of the missing Koreans have arrived in Kathmandu alongside several officials sent by Seoul to help with the emergency rescue efforts, Ang Dorjee Sherpa of the Korean Alpine Federation told AFP.
The missing group was near the Annapurna base camp around 3,230 metres (10,600 feet) above sea level when the avalanche struck after heavy snowfall on Friday.
Helicopters were sent out on Saturday to rescue about 200 people stranded around Annapurna and other nearby mountains after the incident.
Tek Gurung, a guesthouse owner aiding in the search operation, said more than two metres of snow (6.6 feet) had fallen on the hiking trails.
"We have been searching since yesterday but have not found anything yet. It is very windy and snowy here, to search the snow-covered areas on foot is difficult," Gurung told AFP over the phone.
"The rest of the team are unhurt and have safely come down. We are coordinating to make the search operation effective," said Dilip Gurung of the tourism management committee in Chhomrong, which lies on the trekking route.
Sherpa said it had snowed heavily around Annapurna in recent days, making the trek risky.
Annapurna is an avalanche-prone and technically difficult mountain range with a higher death rate than Everest, the world's highest peak.
Thousands of trekkers visit the route every year for its stunning views of the Himalayas.
A snowstorm killed about 40 people on the circuit in 2014, in one of the biggest trekking tragedies to hit Nepal.