Hopes dim for finding other French climbers

31st October 2005, Comments 0 comments

KATHMANDU, Nov 3 (AFP) - A rescue team comprising mountaineers from France and Nepal and sniffer dogs continued their search Thursday for the bodies of 16 climbers still missing after their expedition in northwestern Nepal was hit by an avalanche.

KATHMANDU, Nov 3 (AFP) - A rescue team comprising mountaineers from France and Nepal and sniffer dogs continued their search Thursday for the bodies of 16 climbers still missing after their expedition in northwestern Nepal was hit by an avalanche.

However, according to Prakash Adhikari, chief rescue officer from the Himalayan Rescue Association, rescuers working in arduous conditions had made little progress.

"The rescue team has not found anything today," Adhikari said. "The search operation will continue tomorrow."

Seven French and 11 Nepali climbers were missing and presumed dead after they were buried in the avalanche on October 20 while attempting to climb the 6,981-metre Mount Kangaru.

The bodies of two French climbers have so far been recovered but French alpine experts fear the others may have been swept into a deep gorge and that recovery will not be possible until the snows melt in spring.

On Wednesday last week, rescue teams found the body of French climber Bruno Chardin. On Tuesday they recovered another body, which Adhikari said Thursday had yet to be identified.

The ill-fated expedition, led by Daniel Stolzenberg, 60, was thought to have been asleep at a base camp above 4,000 metres when the huge avalanche struck.

Climbers use a short period between the end of the monsoon rains in September and the onset of winter to scale mountains in Nepal, which has eight of the world's highest peaks including the 8,848-metre Mount Everest.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

0 Comments To This Article