Cape Town - City newlyweds Ronnie and Elizabeth Muhl were miraculously reunited on Sunday after they were separated on Mount Everest only hours before a devastating earthquake rocked Nepal, which has left over 2 200 people dead.
The Simon’s Town couple were members of the Adventures Global team which included Donna McTaggart and Australian Alyssa Azar. Ronnie Muhl is the founder of the expedition company.
All except for Elizabeth were scheduled to trek to Camp One on Mount Everest at 6 065m, which is 5 380m further from Base Camp, when an avalanche was triggered by a 7.9 magnitude earthquake in the Kathmandu Valley on Saturday. Elizabeth stayed at Base Camp.
Adventures Global co-ordinator Kate Smith said on Sunday that until last night, no one had known where Elizabeth was. The Base Camp was the section worst-hit by the avalanche and at least 18 people were killed there.
On Sunday night Ronnie finally made contact with the South African base to confirm their safety. Before that, an intermittent signal due to broken telecommunication lines had left both the climber and co-ordinators in limbo.
Adventures Global representative Chelsea Henning said: “Ronnie called us to say everyone was safe and that he had reached Elizabeth.”
The couple got married on March 14 and 10 days later had flown to Nepal to have a Buddhist wedding ceremony.
Imtiaz Sooliman, founder of aid organisation Gift of the Givers, said search and rescue personnel and trauma specialists were on standby. Rescue SA chief executive Ian Scher also said troops were ready to go to Nepal.
International Relations and Co-operation spokesman Clayson Monyela said: “Until now, there has been no bad news of South Africans who have lost their lives.”