Update: US mountaineer missing after 'skiing into crevasse'News

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Update: US mountaineer missing after 'skiing into crevasse'

By Amanda Caroline  •  September 28, 2022  •  34

Rescuers in Nepal are searching for the famed US mountaineer Hilaree Nelson after she went missing on the world's eighth tallest mountain.

Ms Nelson reportedly fell into a deep crevasse during a ski descent on Monday.

The North Face-sponsored athlete had earlier reached the summit of Mount Manaslu in Nepal with her partner.

On the same day, one person was killed and more than a dozen injured in an avalanche lower down on the same peak.

While search operations were hampered by bad weather on Monday, by Tuesday morning Nepalese rescue workers were able to use a helicopter to search for Ms Nelson.

One of the climbers injured in the avalanche, Phurte Sherpa, told the Associated Press that two unsuccessful helicopter search attempts had been made.

Ms Nelson, 49, slipped and appeared to fall into a 2,000ft (600m) gap in the ice, known as a crevasse, only 15 minutes after reaching the summit of the 26,781ft peak, according to witness accounts.

A local guide that had been working with the couple told Outside magazine that other climbers who were with them reported that "her ski blade skidded off and [she] fell off the other side of the peak".

According to reports, her partner, Jim Morrison, was able to safely return to camp after the incident.

Ms Nelson and Mr Morrison are among the most accomplished alpinists and backcountry skiers in the world.

Based out of the US state of Colorado in the Rocky Mountains, the romantic couple have skied off some of the world's tallest and most forbidding peaks.

In 2018, they became the first to ever ski down Mount Lhotse in Nepal, the world's fourth-highest peak.

She is also the first woman to ever climb both Mount Everest and Mount Lhotse in a single 24-hour period.

"With a career spanning two decades that includes dozens of first descents through more than 40 expeditions to 16 different countries, Hilaree Nelson is the most prolific ski mountaineer of her generation," North Face says about her on their website.

Separately on Monday, an avalanche on Mount Manaslu swept away climbers, porters and Sherpas, killing one and reportedly injuring 14 others.

"It had snowed unceasingly for 15 days," Yukta Gurung, who helps maintain the ropes to the summit, told the Kathmandu Post from the mountain's base camp.

"The area was covered in at least five to six feet of snow - the piled-up snow ultimately gave way triggering the avalanche," he said.

More than 500 climbing permits were issued by Nepal's government for the autumn season, the majority of them for Mount Manaslu.