An usual rescue operation was performed by Fishtail Air’s Newly arrived AS 350 B3 Helicopter this morning in Mt. Langtang Lirung 7234m. Forty years old Slovenian climber, Tomaz Humar who had been missing in the mountain since 10th of November was air lifted by the helicopter through specially performed rope operation. Unfortunately the ill fated climber could not be brought back alive.
The team from a rescue company of Switzerland, Heli Zermat arrived yesterday evening for this special mission under the leadership of Chief Rescue Officer, Bruno Zelk which included the Rescue Pilot, Robert Andenmatten and a popular young climber, Simon Anthamatten.
The As 350 B Piloted by Capt. Sabin Basnet and supported by the Swiss Rescue Pilot, Andenmatten from the passenger’s seat left for the mission at 7.15 this morning which made an aerial survey over the mountain first. After locating the climber at a height of 18000ft, the chopper returned to the Base Camp at Kyangjin and flew back over the site with climber Simon Anthamatten hung on a 30m long rope through sling operation. On reaching close to Tomaz in the middle of a cliff, Simon detached himself from the rope, hooked on the dead climber’s body harness and signaled the hovering chopper to fly off. Simon was brought back the same way on the second load.
This is first time in the history of Nepalese mountaineering that an evacuation had been done through rope work in a such way. Pilot Andenmatten thinks that it is usual in the mountains of Europe and they would be willing to help the mountaineers in Nepal through exchange of technology for such missions so that mountaineers could be rescued and evacuated from extremely difficult conditions. “This would not have been possible without an AS 350 B3 Helicopter “said Bruno Zelk, chief rescue officer of the Company, Heli Zermat.
Late Climber Tomaz Humar is considered to be one of the best and popular climbers of the day and has climbed Mt. Dhaulagiri from the South Side, Pumori from South, Amadablam from North ridge and Mt. Nuptse from the North Face. His reputation stands for taking up most difficult and challenging routes on the mountains allover in Alpine Styled Solo climbing. According to Mr. Jagat Limbu, his base camp companion from the agency, Asian Trekking, He had left Base Camp and was off on 7th of November to make a solo ascent of the mountain and was last in contact till 10 Am, 10th of October after suffering a fall which caused a broken leg and broken back.
(Click for high resolution images. Photos by Jagat Limbu, Asian Trekking)