Atleast five South Korean climbers and four Nepalese guides missing in storm

Nepal is home to eight of the world’s 14 highest mountains including Mount Everest and the autumn climbing season is now at its peak. — Reuters pic

Atleast five South Korean climbers and four Nepalese guides missing in storm

Police official Bir Bahadur Budhamagar said villagers who on Saturday reached the site at the base camp of Mount Gurja, a 7,913 metre-high peak, spotted seven bodies on the mountain slopes.

"Eight people including members of a South Korean expedition team have been killed in western Nepal apparently due to snowstorm", said police spokesman Sailesh Thapa.

Among them is the fastest person to climb the world's 14 highest mountains without using extra oxygen, South Korean climber Kim Chang-ho, according to local media reports.

The storm is the deadliest incident to hit Nepal's mountaineering industry since 18 people were killed at Mount Everest's base camp in 2015 in an avalanche triggered by a powerful natural disaster.

It was unlikely the weather would clear on Saturday and the base camp is at least one-day trek from the nearest village.

"Rescuers will try to recover the bodies on Sunday", the official said.

A rescue team is on its way to the site on foot.

The area lies about 216 km (130 miles) northwest of Kathmandu in the region where the world's seventh-highest mountain, Dhaulagiri, is located.

Four climbers have perished on its flanks and a total of 30 have successfully reached its peak - a fraction of the more than 8,000 people who have summited the world's highest mountain, Everest.

The climbers were attempting to scale the 7,193-meter (23,590-foot) peak during the Autumn climbing season.

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