Last Updated: Sunday, September 23, 2012

(Continuous Updates) Major Manaslu Avalanche Disaster: 11 Climbers Killed!

Disaster Report: Major Avalanche hit Mount Manaslu in Gorkha district of Nepal.
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Original Post: Natural Disasters List September 23, 2012  
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-Report prepared by Ashish Khanal from Nepal. Contact Ashish Khanal  

An injured climber being rescued. (Courtesy: Simrik Air)

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Local Time (NST = UTC + 5:45:00.00). Hit Refresh For Updates

Update 10:30 pm local time

Rescue coordinator Mingma Sherpa said, "The mission is over for now." Rescuers think the missing climbers might be dead. If true, the death toll from the Manaslu avalanche would be 11. For now, officials have confirmed eight deaths: four French citizens, one German, one Italian, one Nepali and one Spanish.

Update 10:00 local time

The spanish victim 'Cristine Mittermeyer' in fact is the german 'Christian Mittermeyer. Nepal Mountaineering Department chief Balkrishan Ghimire confirmed this news.
Total fatalities eight, four from France, other four from Spain, Italy, Germany, Nepal each.

Update 09:15 local time

One of the nine fatalities is Cristine Mittermeyer who is identified as Spanish citizen. The name is also in the list which is given by Nepalese authority to press media. So far rescuers brought down eight bodies to capital Kathmandu and one is still on the spot. But when I messaged this news to Esther Sanz Sieteiglesias, a Spanish reporter from LA RAZÓN newspaper (, she replied me saying no official news of two deaths (death of Marti Gasull is confirmed from Spain side too) from Spain side. Thanks to Esther for the detail but the second spanish (as in the list) name is published by all national newspaer here in Nepal.

This is what diplomatic sources inside the Spanish Foreign Affaires Ministry told Esther Sanz:
"For the moment, we don´t have any certainty that there are more Spanish citizens (than Martí Gasull) between the victims". 
Esther Sanz further adds, they don´t have constancy that there are more Spanish victims, anyway, I´ll be aware and write back to you if there are any news... They didn´t say a NO, they said FOR THE MOMENT...

Update 08:40 PM local time

Finally the death toll has been flashed by the authority here. Nine climbers were killed and 6 are still missing in Manaslu avalanche (list below).

Update 11:45 local time

List of dead climbers (Nine identified):
French nationals Ludo Challeat, Fabrice Priez, Cathrine Ricard and Philippe Bos.
Canadian citizen Domique Ouimet.
Spanish citizens Marti Gasull and Cristine Mittermeyer.
Italian citizen Alberto Magliano
Nepali citizen Dawa Sherpa
Injured: Claude Belmsas, Thomas Grenier, Ralf Rieske, Andreas Reiter and Arnaud Manel. They are airlifted to Kathmandu. Two French nationals, Remy Lecluse and Gregory Costa are still missing.

Update 10:45 local time

Three helicopters (two of Fishtail Air and one of Simrik) are currently on the incident area. Dead and injured people will be uplifted to Samagaun first. Also the injured climbers will be sent to Kathmandu for further treatment.

Update September 24; 09:15 local time

-Rescue team has resumed their search operation from early today.
-Two helicopters of Fishtail and Simrik air left the site of disaster 6 am in the morning.
-Ratna Bajracharya, former chief, Snow and Glacier Hydrology section at the Department of Hydrology and Meteorology says, "It´s unusual because most avalanches generally occur in April and May." Experts are surprised with the huge avalanche on Mount Manaslu, as, according to them, September is not the time for such big avalanches.


-Following rescue pilot of Simrik Air, Siddharthjung Gurung,  at least 18 people have died. In interval of four hours, Simrik Air rescued atleast 16 others. Rescued people are living in lower base camp and nearby Samagaun. The rescue operation was halted after 1:00 PM due to adverse weather.
-Five rescued climbers are having treatment in Civic hospital in Lazimpat, Kathmandu (video below).

Update 11:30 local time
-This is what Himalayan Times (National newspaper) writes:
"At least 11 people are feared dead and eight others have gone missing as an avalanche hit the base camp area of Mount Manaslu in Gorkha on Sunday morning"
-Following Dipendra Paudel of Nepal's tourism ministry, the dead climbers are from Spain, Germany and Nepal. Those missing include five French nationals, a Canadian and an Italian climber.
A Canadian from Revelstoke, Greg Hill, writes in his Facebook profile that "A huge avalanche swept through camp 3 at 4:45am on Manaslu, catching lots of people in their sleeping bags, many dead, and injured. Luckily our team is fine, and helped with the rescue, Glenn Plake is also fine but my heart goes out to all the others."
Glen Plake gave EpicTV the following graphic account of what happened when the avalanche hit his camp Sunday morning.

" I am OK, a bit beat up; missing some teeth and a bruised eye but write in big capital letters, GLEN PLAKE IS ALIVE AND HE’S COMING HOME.

It was a major, major accident. There are up to 14 people missing. There were 25 tents at Camp 3 [6800m] and all of them were destroyed, 12 tents at Camp 2 [6300m] were banged up and moved around.

Greg and I were in a tent together, Rémy was in another. It was 4:45am and I was in my sleeping bag with my headlamp on reading my devotional when we heard a roar. Greg looked at me and said, “That was a big gust of wind,” then a second later, “No, that was an avalanche.”

Then it hit us.

I was swept 300 meters over a serac and down the mountain and came to a stop still in my sleeping bag, still inside the tent. We all went to sleep with avalanche transceivers on so I punched my way out of the tent and started searching.

Searched for 10 minutes when I realized I was barefoot.

Greg was using my down suit for a pillow and I found my suit, I found everything that was in my tent – camera, sleeping bag, ski boots, it was like someone had thrown my gear in the back of a pickup – but there was no sign of Greg. Rémy and his tent are nowhere to be found.”

Update 10:35 local time

Following (in phone conversation) Spanish reporter of LA RAZÓN newspaper, Esther Sanz, the name of the Spanish fatality is Martí Gasull, 43 years old, from Catalonia province. In four decades, 25 Spanish climbers have lost their lives in mountain expeditions in Asia.
Martí Gasull founded the Platform for the Language in Catalan that promotes and defends the Catalan language and culture.
Update 10:05 local time

Two fatalities Christianmetteu Meyer, the German citizen and Babu Dorje Sherpa of Nepal have been identified till now. Other two injured are French citizens Claude Belmas (left) and Armand Manel.

Update 09:00 local time

-Following Spain's Foreign Ministry, one of those climber killed in avalanche was Spanish.
-The identities of victims aren't yet confirmed by officials. However, pilots says rescued climbers are French (3) and Germans (2). Injured climbers are having treatment in hospitals in capital Katmandu.

Update 03:50 local time

-Most of the missing are German tourists. Still 4 tourists are missing.
-Five people are taking treatment in capital Kathmandu. They were airlifted by Helicopters (as seen in photo above).

Update 03:20 local time
-Following Ujyalo News network, nine tourists are confirmed killed and other 13 injured in manaslu avalanche.
-Among the dead are French and German tourists.
Manaslu_peak_Nepal-Rescue teams have reached from Kathmandu on Simrik, Fishtail and Mountain Air helicopters to the disaster area.

Avalanche in Mount Manaslu, Nepal
  -At least 13 people including German tourists are reported to be missing in Avalanche in Mount Manaslu in Gorkha district of Nepal. Twelve others were rescued.
-The avalanche took place at the 2 and 3 number base camp around 04:30 AM Sunday morning. Manaslu is a very steep, sharp peak and also the eighth highest mountain in the world.
-Three Helicopters have been used for the search and rescue operations.
-Note that Manaslu is the 4th most dangerous 8000m peak in the World behind Annapurna, Nanga Parbat, and K2. Huge Avalanche in Manaslu in 1972 killed 15 climbers.

Related Posts:
Deadly avalanche in Annapurna Range  
Avalanche in Ghandruk, Nepal   
Recent natural disasters in Nepal  
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