Dramatic still pictures from Everest Base Camp in the aftermath of the Nepal earthquake emerged on 27 April from a Baltimore-based non-profit organization, Mission 14.
Climber Nick Cienski, an executive with a US outdoor apparel firm and founder and CEO of Mission 14, spoke about the situation at the camp, a day after he helped recover the bodies of 12 of at least 17 avalanche victims.
"The 27 April, early morning in base camp, we've got three helicopters flying loops between Base Camp and Camp 1. Seventy some odd people are trapped up above the ice fall. The job of these three pilots is to extract as many of them as they can in the time they've got. As you can see behind me, there's clouds coming in, bad weather's on its way, high winds are coming in from the Tibetan plateau and so they've only got a certain amount of time to extract these 70 people. The difficulty is that once they land here, many of these people have no camps, no tents, no nothing left, everything's strewn all over the glacier, so the only thing they've got is what they land with in that helicopter and what's in their packs," Cienski said on Monday in a video shot at Base Camp by the organization.
Cienski is leading the first of six climbs of the world's tallest mountains as part of the 6 Summits Challenge which is aimed at raising awareness about human trafficking of children. He narrowly escaped the avalanche on Mount Everest, but said he would continue with the climbs.
The avalanche unleashed by the 7.8-magnitude quake blew tents, people and gear hundreds of feet, only just missing his team, the Canadian said.
A day after helping to recover the bodies of some of the avalanche victims, Cienski agonized over whether to continue his quest in the Himalayan nation.
Injured avalanche survivors were flown down the mountain, but many of the more than 300 foreign climbers attempting to scale Everest were staying put for the time being.
Cienski said most expert sherpas had returned to their villages to see whether their families and homes were safe. Only if they return, and are willing to press on, would Cienski continue in his Mission 14 quest (mission14.org), through which he is seeking to raise awareness against child sex trafficking.