Published: Wed, June 26, 2019
Global Media | By Garry Long

Bodies of 7 Missing Climbers, Including 2 Americans, Found in Indian Himalayas

Bodies of 7 Missing Climbers, Including 2 Americans, Found in Indian Himalayas

The search was under way for the body of an eighth climber on the Nanda Devi mountain, senior administrative official Vijay Kumar Jogdande said, giving details of rescue operations that have lasted nearly a month.

District Magistrate, Pithoragarh, Vijay Kumar Jogdande, who had organised the search team comprising personnel of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police, National Disaster Response Force and the State Disaster Response Force, confirmed that seven bodies, including one of a woman, have been found at a height of 5,800 metres on the mountain this morning.

"The bodies have not been identified yet and it will be possible only after they are brought down to the base camp", said Nimbadia.

The search for a missing eighth mountaineer will continue, Mr Jogdande said.

Veteran British mountaineer Martin Moran led a team of four Britons, two Americans, an Australian and an Indian on an expedition up the 25,600ft Nanda Devi East mountain, which is India's second highest peak.

But a Facebook post by Moran's firm on May 22 said they planned to attempt "an unclimbed peak" around 6,500 metres (21,300 feet) high. Two weeks ago, five bodies which were recovered were thought to be the missing members.

Sydney woman Ruth McCance (left) was part of a group attempting to climb Nanda Devi (right) when an avalanche hit.

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Moran's company reported that they had lost contact with the team on May 26th after an avalanche.

'As a family, we share the same emotions that all next of kin are experiencing in not knowing the whereabouts or well-being of those closest to us'.

Indian authorities previously said the group did not have permission to do so.

"She had been planning on doing something like this ever since I have known her, more than 20 years", he said.

They had set out to summit a previously "unclimbed peak" in India's northern state of Uttarakhand.

Last month, the university said it was "extremely concerned" about Payne, and said: "Our thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues at this hard time".

Mark Thomas, Ian Wade, Kate Armstrong and Zachary Quain, who had split from the 12-member main group, were rescued on June 2.

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