Top Russian Female Climber Missing on Dhaulagiri

Nadezhda Oleneva, one of Russia’s best women climbers, is missing on Dhaulagiri I.

Her small Russian team had started their summit push on the 8,167m peak when the accident occurred at about 6,680m, at 11:25 am local time.

Exactly what happened is unclear. The Himalayan Times reports that the 38-year-old Oleneva fell into a crevasse. Other sources, including, suggest that she may have fallen off the mountain. Bad weather grounded an immediate helicopter search, which is now scheduled for 6 am tomorrow, according to Anna Piunova of

Her climbing partners, Roman Abildaev and Rasim Kashapov, are returning to Base Camp for the night. Weather permitting, they will fly out with the rescue helicopter tomorrow morning. Abildaev’s tracker shows him descending and currently at about 4,964m.

According to The Himalayan Times, Abildaev and Kashapov reported that Oleneva fell some 500m, suggesting that it was not a crevasse accident.

Oleneva, Abildaev, and Kashapov are attempting to climb Dhaulagiri’s normal route without sherpa support or supplementary oxygen. Another Russian party is attempting Cho Oyu by a new route from the Nepal side. Both expeditions are commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Russian Mountaineering Association and the Russian Ministry of Sports.

We will update this story once we have further information.

Dhaulagiri seen from an aircraft.

Dhaulagiri. Photo: Sergey Ashmarin

Kris Annapurna

KrisAnnapurna is a writer with ExplorersWeb.

Kris has been writing about history and tales in alpinism, news, mountaineering, and news updates in the Himalaya, Karakoram, etc., for the past year with ExplorersWeb. Prior to that, Kris worked as a real estate agent, interpreter, and translator in criminal law. Now based in Madrid, Spain, she was born and raised in Hungary.