Bodies of 2 Korean trekkers found

Nepal Army recover two bodies presumed to be of South Korean trekkers who had been missing since January.

Two bodies believed to be of South Korean trekkers missing since an avalanche hit them in January on the hiking trail to Annapurna Base Camp were found by a Nepal Army rescue team on Sunday.

The body of one of the group’s Nepali guides had been found on Friday. All three bodies are being flown to a hospital in Pokhara. Another body of a Nepali guide for a different group was found in the same spot last month.

They were among four South Koreans and three Nepali guides in an 11-member trekking group had been hit by an avalanche near a place a called Hinku at 3,300m, 50km northwest of Pokhara. They had been buried in the ice, and had become visible only after the snow started melting in the Himalaya.

A number of other trekkers in the group had been rescued on 18 January itself, but helicopters had not been able to land in the area because of poor weather and the search had been called off. 

The missing trekkers included two women and two men who were Korean volunteer teachers in Nepal, and had turned back from reaching Base Camp after heavy snowfall blocked the trail, when they were caught in the avalanche. 

South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who himself is an avid trekker and has visited Nepal several times, promised in January to help find the missing Korean hikers.

This winter saw several blizzards in the Himalaya and one of them dumped up to 5m of snow in the Annapurna Sanctuary, one of the most popular trekking routes in Nepal. The Army is continuing the search for one Nepali and two Koreans still missing.

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