Authorities have found the bodies of seven climbers out of 11 that have been missing since Tuesday near the top of Mt. Elbrus, the highest peak in Europe. The bodies were discovered in and around snow caves dug below the western summit of the 18,506-foot peak, according to news reports. One climber had reached rescuers, but four others are still missing, and rescuers have been searching the mountain on foot and by helicopter.
Elbrus, an extinct volcano in the Caucasus Range, is technically easy to climb but presents severe altitude and weather risk, along with some crevasse danger. Temperatures were reported at –50°C (–58°F) on the upper mountain.
A Russian group of eight and a Ukrainian group of four were attempting the peak to celebrate Victory Day, the May 9 anniversary of victory over Nazi Germany in World War II.Comment on this story