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Norman Hardie

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Norman David Hardie QSO (28 December 1924 – 31 October 2017)

Norman was born in Timaru, New Zealand in 1924. He has been a member of the New Zealand Alpine Club since 1945, was elected to Life Membership in 1958 and served as President in 1973.

Geoff Harrow, Norman Hardie and Bill Beaven Image: Bob McKerrow 2015

Norman was one of a party of 9 that made the first ascent of Kanchenjunga in 1955. The party consisted of R C Evans (Leader), N Hardie (Deputy Leader), T A Mackinnon, A R Streather, G C Band, J Jackson, J N Mather, J Brown and J H Clegg. An account of this ascent can be found in the New Zealand Alpine Club’s Alpine Journal of 1955 (pages 280-287).

His autobiography “On My Own Two Feet” the life of a mountaineer, was published by Canterbury University Press in 2006.

A copy is also held in the Club’s reference library, situated in the National Office, Christchurch.

Copied below is the blurb from this publication.

Norman Hardie is a New Zealand civil engineer who has lived a fascinating life. He paid his way through university by shooting deer in rugged terrain. After graduating he worked on hydroelectric projects among the mountains and, with a strong group of friends, made many first ascents on major summits in the Southern Alps.

Eventually, London and the Himalayas beckoned, and Norman served as a secretary to the 1953 British Expedition to Everest. Two years later he led one of the two summit pairs that made the first ascent of Kangchenjunga, the third-highest mountain in the world.

Norman played an important part in three expeditions with Sir Edmund Hillary and was a director of his Himalayan Trust. He went to Antarctica three times, including as the leader of Scott Base, and was also involved in many mountain rescues.

On Wednesday 6 May 2015 at the Cashmere Club, Christchurch, Norman Hardie spoke on the first ascent of the world’s 3rd highest peak, Mt Kangchenjunga – NZAC event news post. Norman also presented a colour slideshow, which was professionally filmed and is viewable online First Ascent of Mt Kangchenjunga Norman Hardie QSO.

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