Sep 24, 2012 / 11:06 am
A BC man is among the survivors of an avalanche in Nepal that left at least nine people dead and several others missing.
The avalanche happened Sunday on Mount Manaslu in northern Nepal, where one of the missing is Canadian.
Greg Hill, a skier from Revelstoke, was among dozens of climbers asleep in their tents when the avalanche swept through one of the camps on the mountain.
Hill's wife Tracy told CTV News, the father of two was not trapped in the avalanche and was sleeping nearby when it hit. She said Hill was concerned about the camp's location because it was right in an avalanche path.
Hill was part of a German-led film expedition on speed climbing the world’s eighth highest peak.
He posted a message on Facebook indicating that he is alive and his team helped with the rescue.
"A huge avalanche swept through camp 3 at 4:45 a.m. on Manaslu, catching lots of people in their sleeping bags, many dead, and injured," Hill wrote on Facebook Sunday morning. "Luckily our team is fine, and helped with the rescue.”
Magee Tabeh, Hill's cousin, said he got a phone call as soon as the avalanche hit and was relieved to see the Facebook message.
"That was a big personal relief that he was alright. There were a few moments of panic," Tabeh said.
In 2010, Hill gained international notoriety for climbing and skiing 71 mountains in a year.
He told CTV News he totaled two million vertical feet.
"What I'm looking for in life is challenge and reward and that's how I really enjoy life is just feeling that I'm really pushing myself to my limits,” Hill said in 2010.
Local police Chief Basanta Bahadur Kuwar told The Associated Press that rescuers were still trying to retrieve the ninth body stranded some 1,100 metres from the summit.
Four helicopters were searching by air, he said, while climbers and guides were searching the slopes on foot.
At least six other climbers are still believed to be missing, including 48-year-old Quebec cardiologist Dominique Ouimet.
So far, the French Foreign Ministry has said four of the dead were nationals of France and Spain's foreign ministry has confirmed one of the dead was a Spanish climber.
Three French, two Germans and two Italians were reported flown to hospitals for treatment of injuries suffered when the avalanche struck the high-altitude camp at approximately 4 a.m. Sunday.
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