UPDATED: 16 Dead in Mt. Everest Avalanche Kills; Climbing Season Halted

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A deadly avalanche on Mt. Everest claimed the lives of sixteen Sherpa’s in what has become the deadliest day in the history of mountain climbing expeditions, and the annual trekking season has not officially started.

Sherpa’s are hired to carry the gear of the international teams of hikers, who each year flock to the Himalayas in an effort to climb the highest peak in the world, and work to ready the mountain for the teams.

Earlier news reports indicated at least thirteen helicopters were seen carrying the dead from the mountain where the guides where lying rope and carving out climbing paths in preparation for the influx of international climbing teams expected to arrive beginning next month.

Of the original four missing three were killed bringing the total dead to 16. The annual trekking season has halted after Sherpa's organization voted to end the deadliest single day disaster in the history of climbing.

Global warming continues to make the trek to the summits peak increasingly dangerous as deadly overhanging ice walls, known as searcs, loosen and at any moment can break off the glacier causing deadly avalanches.

The final leg of the trek is the most treacherous as climbers are often stalled at the bottleneck, which is precariously positioned under the serac.

There has been no word on the four other Sherpa’s missing. The injured were taken to local hospitals. Climbers attempting the summit were given the option to continue or abandon the climb effort.

The Summit, a recent documentary of what had been, until this horrific avalanche, known as the deadliest day on K2 claimed the lives of season and novice climbers.

Pemba Gyalje, the Sherpa who survived the 2008 K2 disaster and went on to pen a novel about the deadly incident, descended the mountain as did other climbers still at the summits peak, without fixed ropes.

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