An avalanche on Nepal's Mount Everest has killed at least nine local guides. Several other guides were rescued while others are still missing.
An official with Nepal's Tourism Ministry said all the dead were Sherpa guides working on the mountain in preparation for the start of climbing season.
The official said the avalanche occurred at around 6:30 a.m. ((0100 UTC)) Friday in an area called the "popcorn field."
The major avalanche is the first of the climbing season at the world's highest peak.
Thousands of climbers have scaled the mountain since Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay completed the first ascent in 1953. Nearly 250 people have died.