Rescue on Kangchenjunga Fails

Nirmal Purja on top of Dhaulagiri. Photo: Project Possible

One day after Sherpa climbers opened the route on Kangchenjunga, there is already an emergency situation on the mountain. Two climbers halted at around 8,400m during their descent, stricken by a combination of altitude issues, hypothermia and snowblindness.

As on Annapurna recently, ex-Ghurka Nirmal Purja and his team have found themselves involved in the rescue. His Project Possible team, looking to summit every 8000’er in seven months, flew over to Kangchenjunga from Dhaulagiri and summited the mountain yesterday morning. They came across the ailing climbers during their descent.

Rescuers are now moving the climbers down to Camp 4, where they will spend the night. Tomorrow morning, they will descend to Camp 2, where helicopter evacuation should be possible.

In a twist, both struggling climbers subscribe to Global Rescue, the same service that covered Wui Kin Chin on Annapurna. Once again, the company will liaise with Nirmal Purja to try and save a client’s life. The Annapurna emergency ended with finger-pointing, confusion and ultimately Chin’s death. 

Updated 1am GMT: The two ailing climbers have since perished.

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About the Author

Martin Walsh

Martin Walsh

Martin Walsh is a freelance writer and wildlife photographer based in Da Lat, Vietnam.

A history graduate from the University of Nottingham, Martin's career arc is something of a smörgåsbord. A largely unsuccessful basketball coach in Zimbabwe and the Indian Himalaya, a reluctant business lobbyist in London, and an interior design project manager in Saigon.

He has been fortunate enough to see some of the world. Highlights include tracking tigers on foot in Nepal, white-water rafting the Nile, bumbling his way from London to Istanbul on a bicycle, feeding wild hyenas with his face in Ethiopia, and accidentally interviewing Hezbollah in Lebanon.

His areas of expertise include adventure travel, hiking, wildlife, and half-forgotten early 2000s indie-rock bands.

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Helicopter KC
2 years ago

Hopefully they will be able to save them with no harm or casualties…

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Asim Gupta
Asim Gupta
2 years ago

It is difficult for the climbers at such height to escape from HAPE.

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Siva
Siva
2 years ago

There’s some confusion here – the two rescued climbers are Ramesh Ray and Rudra Prasad Halder, who’re both alive but injured. The two climbers who’re presumably dead are Biplab Baidya and Kuntal Karar, who weren’t located or rescued.

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