An Australian woman believed to have been on her first expedition to Mount Everest had ‘no chance’ when an avalanche washed away her tent at base camp on the world’s highest mountain.
Renu Fotedar, 48, is among at least 19 people killed at the Everest base camp, with some 200 Australians believed to be still missing in Nepal after an 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck on Saturday.
A Dreamers Destination Trek and Expeditions representative said Ms Fotedar’s body had been recovered and was being taken to the Nepalese capital.
‘She’s on the way to Kathmandu right now,’ he told AAP from Nepal on Monday.
‘She’s from Australia.’
The trekking company’s managing director Temba Tsheri said Ms Fotedar was inside a tent in base camp when the quake hit.
‘A big avalanche came and a lot of people were washed away. There was no time,’ he told News Corp Australia.
‘It so fast it was like a dream. They couldn’t do anything.
‘There was a big sound. They didn’t get the chance to run away. There was no place to hide.’
Ms Fotedar was a holistic and transpersonal counsellor, with her website noting that she was to be on a 59-day Everest expedition.
She had been living in Switzerland for three years.
Ms Fotedar’s LinkedIn profile says she earned a degree from the University of Wollongong in 1999 and ran businesses in Victoria from 2005 to 2012.
A worried cousin told The Times of India that she was last contacted at the Makalu Base Camp and was to climb to the Mt Everest Base Camp 1 on Friday.
‘She has two young boys 17 and 15 years old who are anxious to hear some news about her,’ Ashish Kaul said on Sunday.
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop says more than 850 Australians are confirmed safe in Nepal.
More than 3600 people have died in the quake with about 6000 injured, buildings destroyed and morgues and hospitals overflowing in Kathmandu, as powerful aftershocks continue and people camp outside in cold and wet conditions.
‘It’s apparent that these figures are likely to rise,’ Ms Bishop said.
Hundreds of foreign mountaineers were at Mount Everest at the start of the annual climbing season, including 18-year-old Australian Zachary Sheridan.
Actor Hugh Sheridan was heading to Nepal, and then base camp, to search for his younger brother.
‘Stay positive everyone, I feel optimistic that he is alive and stuck,’ Sheridan posted on social media on Monday.
Australian man Glenn Azar said his climber daughter Alyssa, 18, was among the lucky ones. She was away from base camp when the avalanche struck and wants to get off the mountain as soon as possible.
After initially fearing the worst, Perth man Michael Penson was relieved late on Monday when he heard from his 34-year-old son Blake who was at Everest Base Camp 2.
Blake contacted his family following the initial quake but gave them an anxious wait when they hadn’t heard from him after the second tremor.
Victorian Camille Thomas had to pull herself out after being buried under snow in the village of Langtang, just north of the capital Kathmandu.