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July 21, 2018

Missing climber feared to be dead in Himalayas found safe by drone

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A British climber has been rescued from one of the world’s highest mountains after being spotted by a drone while he was trying to survive in the Himalayas.

The mountaineer, Rick Allen, from Aberdeen, was in the Pakistani section of the Himalayas on an expedition with his climbing partner, Sandy Allan, from the Highlands town of Newtonmore.

According to the BBC, Allen decided to carry on alone while Allan decided to turn back due to high winds, and returned to camp safely. He awaited his friend but after 36 hours missing, Allan thought that Allen didn’t survive his solo expedition.

The experienced climber was feared to be dead when he fell after his solo attempt on the 26,401ft summit of Broad Peak, the 12th highest mountain in the world.

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Luckily, a base camp Japanese cook later spotted the climber’s rucksack before a drone was used to locate him. Read more on our Twitter account @amomama_usa

The drone that saved Allen was operated by a Polish climber named Bartek Bargiel. He, along with his brother Andrzej, were attempting to ski down K2. After the Japanese cook spotted Allen’s backpack, Bargiel decided to fly the drone in for a closer look.

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After the Bargiel’s drone showed images that Allen was, against all odds, still alive, it was used to guide Sherpas and climbers to him.

Bargiel flew his drone approximately 27,559 feet, or 8,400 meters, around K2, the 2nd highest mountain in the world after Everest, and Broad Peak. Allen, who was once annoyed by drone users flying in the wilderness, has now changed his mind.

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“A number of people had assessed the situation and come to the conclusion that I was not going to come back,” Allen told the BBC. “I think Sandy knows me well enough that I can hang in in some pretty tough situations. But I think even he was struggling.”

After being brought back to base camp, Allen was flown from the area by helicopter for treatment to frostbites on his toes, but incredibly, aside from that, he had only minor injuries.

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