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March 22, 2021

Purnima following Maurice Herzog’s footsteps

Myagdi: Mountaineers have started climbing the 8,091meters high Annapurna First Mountain using the ‘Maurice Herzog’ trail in Myagdi. Purnima Shrestha’s team is heading towards the base camp using the Herzog’s trail connecting Annapurna base camp via Narchang in Myagdi.

The Annapurna Municipality on Saturday bade farewell to Shrestha’s team, who were on their way to the base camp for mountaineering. The Rural Municipality Chairman Damba Bahadur Pun, Ward Chairman Krishna Prasad Baruwal, Accounts Officer Jay Subedi, and others bade farewell.

Earlier on Friday, Gandaki Chief Minister Prithvi Subba Gurung bade farewell to the team. This is the first team to go to Annapurna after the Covid-19 pandemic. There are 16 other foreign climbers in the team. Mountaineer Shrestha said that the plan to promote Annapurna mountaineering through the risky ‘Maurice Herzog’ trail was stopped and now it is succeeding.

Pemba Sherpa is the Sherpa of this climbing group. Purnima of Gorkha Arughat, who works for Karobar Economic Daily, has already climbed Mt. Everest in 2018, Manaslu in 2017, and Amadablum in 2019. The team has stated that they will stay in the base camp area for about a month.

 Maurice Herzog, a French citizen, first climbed Annapurna I on June 3, 1950. Annapurna is the first human footpath to rise above 8,000 meters. A footpath connecting the base camp via Narchang has been identified 70 years after Maurice’s ascent.

Chairman of Annapurna Village Municipality Pun said that Rs. One lakh has been provided to the climbing team personally and Rs Four lakh from the village municipality. Chairman Pun said that the village municipality, which organized the first Annapurna Tourism Festival in Narchang last year, has started naming, mapping, infrastructure construction, and promotion.

Even after 70 years of the ascent of ‘Annapurna First’, the number of successful climbers is very low. The number of climbers has decreased as it is risky and difficult. Nepali women have not reached the peak of it.  The Gandaki state government has provided financial assistance of Rs. 800,000 to the full moon climbing team. Along with the success, there will be a record of Annapurna’s first successful female climber in the name of Purnima. Gandaki has Annapurna, Dhaulagiri and Manaslu mountains higher than 8,000 meters.

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