Update On MM Trekking Group In Nepal
Mark Gunlogson received calls at 9 p.m. Saturday, Seattle time, and again this morning at 8 a.m., Seattle time, with updates for our group in Namche Bazaar. Some aftershocks are still occurring, which rattle already shaken nerves. But, everybody is ok and safe. Deana reports that the kids from the Children’s Home that many of you have supported, are all ok too. Also thankfully, the families of our Mountain Madness Sherpa staff are ok, although some of their homes have been badly damaged.
We are in the process of setting up a fund to help our staff and the Children’s Home – watch info on our Facebook page and we will send out another blog with more information.
Deana Zabaldo with kids from the Children’s Home. Deana Zabaldo photo
For now, though, we are thankful our group is at Namche Bazzaar, the biggest village in the Khumbu and a safe place to be. The electricity there is working, water is available, and food sufficient for a couple of weeks at least. Monday, Nepal time, the group will stretch their legs and go for a walk in a safe area and release some of the stress of this situation and, if possible, give a helping hand. When the time is right, the group will hike to the town of Lukla and fly out to Kathmandu. In the meantime, they remain safe.
Namche Bazaar before the earthquake. Marla Fenske photo
In Kathmandu, our team is ok. Kili Sherpa and Sagar Poudel are ok, though Sagar reported that both he and Kili are sleeping outside of their houses in tents, their houses standing, but the stability of them is uncertain. He says it’s raining in Kathmandu, which will keep dust levels down but make rescue efforts less favorable.
For those of you who that have been with MM in Nepal we’d like you to know that Neel is ok and his shop, the “Rainbow Thanka,” also is fine. No shops though are open in Thamel area. Because of continuous and frequent aftershocks, most people (inside or outside Kathmandu) cannot stay inside their home so they very often stay outside.
Neel in his store, Rainbow Thanka, a couple years ago. Neil Asaba photo
For now, though, we are thinking of our Mountain Madness clients, staff, and their families and all others in this disaster.