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Wednesday, 29th May 2013
In General Japan News,

Japanese climber Chizuko Kono perishes attempting Dhaulagiri peak

Nepalese officials have confirmed that Japanese climber Chizuko Kono has died while attempting to reach the top of Nepal's Dhaulagiri peak.

The death of the 66-year-old was confirmed on Tuesday (May 28th) although Dawa Sherpa said that Kono died the week before at 7,700 meters.

Spanish mountaineer Juanjo Garra, 50 also died on the peak after he fell over and broke his ankle.

Tika Gurung, the organiser of the expedition, said: "On Friday afternoon, Mr Garra slipped and broke his ankle and couldn't walk any more. His guide, Keshab Gurung, stayed with him overnight and then the helicopters tried to rescue him the next day, but the altitude was too high."

Dawa Sherpa explained that Kono wanted to carry on to the ascent of the mountain despite hearing about the Spanish climber's fate.

"After that accident, Kono wanted to try to reach the top. We continued our climb last Thursday, but she was too tired to go on. So we abandoned the climb just about 120 meters shy of the summit."

Kono's Sherpa said that wind and fog stopped the pair from descending the mountain as it meant they were unable to see the route they had taken to get to where they were.

Instead of getting to Camp 4, which is located at 7,500 metres, the pair were forced to stay at 7,700 metres where Dawa Sherpa said she "died of weakness".

A Japanese climber hit the headlines recently after he became the oldest man to successfully climb Mount Everest.

Yuichiro Miura reached the summit of the world's highest mountain last week and at 80-years-old beat Min Bahadur Sherchan to become the oldest climber to reach Everest's peak. 

Mr Sherchan previously held the record when he scaled the mountain back in 2008 aged 76. 

He made a second attempt recently, which at 81-years-old would have trumped Mr Miura's record, but was forced to abandon his climb due to poor weather conditions on Tuesday, May 28th.