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Mount Everest climber describes 'awful noise' of avalanche

A climber who was on Mount Everest when the 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit in Nepal on Saturday described a harrowing scene as deadly avalanches were triggered.

"We were about two-thirds of the way up the route to Camp Two, and we heard an awful noise, and heard avalanches coming down on either sides of the valley,'' climber Garrett Madison told Hoda Kotb on TODAY Monday. "We thought we were going to get taken out. Fortunately we were only dusted by a snow cloud."

At least 3,800 have died from the earthquake, which caused the avalanche on Mount Everest that resulted in the deaths of at least 17 people, including three Americans. It's unknown how many people are still trapped on the mountain.

"Unfortunately, base camp was hit the hardest,'' Madison said. "We were very fortunate up on the mountain where we were. We lucked out. The base camp got huge rock and snow slides coming down, and it obliterated most of the base camp."

Marisa Eve Girawong, one of the three Americans killed, was camp doctor with Madison's Seattle-based mountaineering company.

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