Chamonix reeling after Nepal avalanche

26th September 2012, by Abi Butcher

Two Chamonix mountain guides caught in the avalanche in Nepal at the weekend are still missing.

Rémy Lécluse (pictured) and Greg Costa, who were in their tents on Mount Manaslu with world-famous extreme skier Glen Plake when the avalanche struck at 4am.

The slide swept through a camp on Manaslu at 7,000m, killing at least 11 people. Lécluse and Costa are two of three mountaineers still missing.

Together with Glen Plake, they were attempting to ski 8,156m (26,759ft) Mount Manaslu without oxygen.

Speaking from the Nepal capital of Kathmandu, Plake told reporters he felt lucky to be alive. He said he did “everything he could” to find his friends.

“Unfortunately everything I did proved to produce nothing. At that point, I had to think about my own life,” he said.

As rescuers in Nepal give up hope of finding any more survivers, the French town of Chamonix is reeling from the news.

Tributes have poured in for the “legendary” Rémy Lécluse, a popular guide with the Ski Club and Mountain Tracks.

Head of France’s SNGM union of mountain guides Denis Cabrieres said Lécluse “went everywhere there were beautiful slopes to ski”.

The Nepal avalanche also claimed the lives of two more locals — Fabrice Priez, 45, a technical director for the Chamonix branch of the UCPA outdoor sporting organisation, and mountain guide Ludovic Challeat.

Nepalese mountaineering officials say eight bodies have been recovered: Priez, Challeat, Philippe Lucien Bos and Catherine Marie Andree Richard of France; German Christian Mittermeyer; Italian Alberto Magliano; Spaniard Marti Roirg Gasull; and Nepali Dawa Dorji.

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