FOREIGN EXPEDITIONTO Mt ARWA SPIRE: MAY 2011

A foreign nationals expedition was launched in the month of May 2011 to Arwa Spire in Garhwal Himalayas (Photograph of the peak attached to left). The team consisted of four foreign nationals i.e two Germans, one Swiss and one Italian along with support team comprising of one manager, one Liaison Officer, one cook and 65 porters. On 11 May, the team moved from Base Camp to Camp 1 for carrying out reconnaissance. While negotiating through the route, a German photographer Mr. Daniel Ancestor fell into a crevasse. The team immediately carried out search but in vain. The team finally returned to Base Camp at 0130 hours on 12 May 2011 without finding any trace of Mr Ancestor. On night of 14 May 2011, Military Operations Directorate directed this Headquarters to launch rescue operations. Two Air Force Helicopters were pushed in for the said rescue. They arrived in Joshimath on 15 May 2011 and carried four qualified personnel of the local Army unit to Base Camp. The team along with Italian and Swiss nationals carried out extensive search in the crevasse on 16 May and 17 May 2011. They once again attempted but could not trace and retrieve the body of Mr. Ancestor as the crevasse was very deep. The search was finally called off and the team returned on 18 May. Efforts and dedication to the duty displayed by the Army personnel was highly appreciated by the foreign mountaineering team.