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Saturday 22 June, 2024
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US skier Hilaree Nelson missing in Nepal after plunging 2,000-ft

BY Anas Shah Sep 27, 2022. 01:12 am UPDATED: Sep 27, 2022. 01:12 am

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Hilaree Nelson, a well-known skier, has vanished after plunging into a 2,000-foot crevasse just minutes after a menacing post from Manaslu Peak.

Mother of two Nelson, 49, is said to have fallen just below the top on Monday morning about 11.30am Nepali time.

Nelson and her companion, James Morrison, had just taken a picture while standing atop Manaslu, the eighth-tallest mountain in the world.

“Summit success!” they shouted, taking the photo with three Sherpa guides, however, as the couple put on their skis, tragedy strikes.

Shangri-La Nepal Trek, the guiding company that worked with Nelson and Morrison, received a call at midday after it was determined that Nelson had fallen.

“The duo reached the true summit of Manaslu at 11.30AM local time. And about 15 minutes later I got a call from our Base Camp that her ski blade skidded off and [she] fell off the other side of the peak,” said Jiban Ghimire, managing director of the guiding company.

Nelson reportedly fell into a vertical chasm at a height of about 80 feet, according to an eyewitness.

Due to bad weather in the afternoon, helicopter rescue attempts were put on hold.

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Ghimire claims that travelling on foot “to reach the incident scene from base camp” takes roughly three days.

“Search and rescue efforts are being hampered by the weather.”

“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,” said Nelson’s sponsor North Face on its website.

The couple hoped to descend Manaslu last week but heavy snowfall delayed progress.

The first skiers to descend the 27,940-foot Lhotse in 2018 were Nelson and Morrison, both renowned big-mountain skiers in their own right. Nelson was given the National Geographic Adventurer of the Year Award for this feat.

“I haven’t felt as sure-footed on Manaslu as I have on past adventure into the thin atmosphere of the high Himalaya,” she wrote in an update on her Instagram.

“These past weeks have tested my resilience in new ways. The constant monsoon with its incessant rain and humidity has made me hopelessly homesick. I am challenged to find the peace and inspiration from the mountain when it’s been constantly shrouded in mist.”

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