File photo taken on June 2, 2018 shows trekkers viewing the scenery in Annapurna region in Nepal. Two female trekkers from the Netherlands have gone missing in Nepal's Annapurna region, authorities confirmed here on Wednesday. (Photo by Sunil Sharma/Xinhua)
KATHMANDU, March 18 (Xinhua) -- Two female trekkers from the Netherlands have gone missing in Nepal's Annapurna region, authorities confirmed here on Wednesday.
The Trekking Agencies' Association of Nepal (TAAN), an umbrella organization of trekking agencies spread across the country, informed that the trekking duo were contacted on March 16 for the last time via chatting and social media platforms Whatsapp and Instagram.
"We got the information about missing trekkers from the Consulate Office of the Netherlands in Kathmandu. We have already circulated the information to our member agencies and trekking guides," Sarita Lama, General Secretary at TAAN informed Xinhua.
The missing trekkers have been identified as Madeleine Van Der Perk and Olga Spronken. They had checked in at Besi Sahar, the entry point of the trekking route, on March 9. Their trekking route followed from Jagat via Thorong La Pass to Jomsom.
"It has been reported that a Nepali porter was also with them, but it has not be verified yet," Lama added.
Annapurna trekking circuit is one of the most popular routes in the Himalayan country, which attracts thousands of trekkers every year.
Many trekkers opt to hike without any affiliation with trekking agencies or professional guides and porters, which is the major reason for missing persons cases, according to the official.
"We have always stressed that foreign trekkers shouldn't trek alone as there are many risks associated," Lama shared with Xinhua.
Earlier in January this year, at least six trekkers, including four South Koreans, had gone missing from the Annapurna region after an avalanche was triggered by heavy snowfall.