Bill Tilman by Sandy Lee
|Born||14 February 1898|
|Died||1977 (aged 79)|
South Atlantic Ocean
Major Harold William "Bill" Tilman, CBE, DSO, MC and Bar, (14 February 1898 – 1977) was an English mountaineer and explorer, renowned for his Himalayan climbs and sailing voyages.
Major is a military rank of commissioned officer status, with corresponding ranks existing in many military forces throughout the world.
The Distinguished Service Order (DSO) is a military decoration of the United Kingdom, and formerly of other parts of the Commonwealth, awarded for meritorious or distinguished service by officers of the armed forces during wartime, typically in actual combat. Since 1993 all ranks have been eligible.
The Military Cross (MC) is the third-level military decoration awarded to officers and other ranks of the British Armed Forces, and formerly awarded to officers of other Commonwealth countries.
Tilman was born on 14 February 1898 in Wallasey in Cheshire, the son of a well-to-do sugar merchant John Hinkes Tilman and his wife Adeline Schwabe (née Rees). He was educated at Berkhamsted Boys school. At the age of 18, Tilman was commissioned into the Royal Field Artillery and fought in the First World War, including the Battle of the Somme, and was twice awarded the Military Cross for bravery. His climbing career, however, began with his acquaintance with Eric Shipton in Kenya, East Africa, where they were both coffee growers. Beginning with their joint traverse of Mount Kenya in 1929 and their ascents of Kilimanjaro and the fabled "Mountains of the Moon" Ruwenzori, Shipton and Tilman formed one of the most famed partnerships in mountaineering history. When it came time to leave Africa, Tilman was not content with merely flying home but rode a bicycle across the continent to the West Coast where he embarked for England.
Wallasey is a town within the Metropolitan Borough of Wirral, in Merseyside, England, on the mouth of the River Mersey, at the northeastern corner of the Wirral Peninsula. At the 2011 Census, the population was 60,284.
Cheshire is a county in North West England, bordering Merseyside and Greater Manchester to the north, Derbyshire to the east, Staffordshire and Shropshire to the south and Flintshire, Wales and Wrexham county borough to the west. Cheshire's county town is the City of Chester (118,200); the largest town is Warrington (209,700). Other major towns include Crewe (71,722), Ellesmere Port (55,715), Macclesfield (52,044), Northwich (75,000), Runcorn (61,789), Widnes (61,464) and Winsford (32,610)
Sugar is the generic name for sweet-tasting, soluble carbohydrates, many of which are used in food. The various types of sugar are derived from different sources. Simple sugars are called monosaccharides and include glucose, fructose, and galactose. "Table sugar" or "granulated sugar" refers to sucrose, a disaccharide of glucose and fructose. In the body, sucrose is hydrolysed into fructose and glucose.
He volunteered for service in the Second World War; he first saw action during the Battle of France helping to cover the retreat in Flanders before getting to the beaches at Dunkirk. Tilman then served in North Africa, Iraq and Iran before being called on for special duty in 1943. He then was dropped by parachute into Albania behind enemy lines to fight with Albanian and Italian partisans. For his actions there he was awarded the Distinguished Service Order for his efforts, and was given the keys to the city of Belluno which he helped save from occupation and destruction.
World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 50 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.
The Battle of France, also known as the Fall of France, was the German invasion of France and the Low Countries during the Second World War. In the six weeks from 10 May 1940, German forces defeated Allied forces by mobile operations and conquered France, Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands, bringing land operations on the Western Front to an end until the Normandy landings on 6 June 1944. Italy entered the war on 10 June 1940 and invaded France over the Alps.
French Flanders is a part of the historical County of Flanders in present-day France where Flemings were traditionally the dominant ethnic group and where a dialect of Dutch was or still is traditionally spoken. The region lies in the modern-day region of Hauts-de-France and roughly corresponds to the arrondissements of Lille, Douai and Dunkirk on the southern border with Belgium. Together with French Hainaut and the Cambrésis, it makes up the French Department of Nord.
Tilman was involved in two of the 1930s Mount Everest expeditions - participating in the 1935 Reconnaissance Expedition, and reaching 27,200 feet without oxygen as the expedition leader in 1938. He penetrated the Nanda Devi sanctuary with Eric Shipton in 1934, and in 1936 he went on to lead an Anglo-American expedition to Nanda Devi. With the support of a team which included Peter Lloyd and H. Adams Carter, Tilman and Noel Odell succeeded in making the first ascent of the 7,816 metres (25,643 ft) mountain, which remained the highest summit climbed by man until 1950. Tilman later described their arrival on the summit:
Mount Everest, known in Nepali as Sagarmatha (सगरमाथा) and in Tibetan as Chomolungma (ཇོ་མོ་གླང་མ), is Earth's highest mountain above sea level, located in the Mahalangur Himal sub-range of the Himalayas. The international border between Nepal and China runs across its summit point.
Precipitated by unexpected permission from Tibet, the 1935 British Mount Everest reconnaissance expedition was planned at short notice as a preliminary to an attempt on the summit of Mount Everest in 1936. After exceptionally rancorous arguments involving the Mount Everest Committee in London, Eric Shipton was appointed leader following his successful trekking style of expedition to the Nanda Devi region in India in 1934.
The Shipton–Tilman Nanda Devi expeditions took place in the 1930s. Nanda Devi is a Himalayan mountain in what was then the Garhwal District in northern India, just west of Nepal, and at one time it was thought to be the highest mountain in the world.
In 1939, Tilman was the first man to attempt climbing in the remote and unexplored Assam Himalaya, exploring the Southern approaches of Gori Chen, 6538 metres, before his team succumbed to malaria. In 1947 he attempted Rakaposhi, then made his way to Kashgar to join up with Eric Shipton in a lightweight attempt on Muztagh Ata, 7546 metres, which nearly succeeded. On his way back to India, he detoured through Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor to see the source of the river Oxus. During his extensive exploration of the areas of Langtang, Ganesh and Manang in Nepal in 1949, Tilman was the first to ascend Paldor, 5896 metres, and found the pass named after him beyond Gangchempo.
Assam Himalaya is a traditional designation for the portion of the Himalaya range between the eastern border of Bhutan, on the west, and the Great Bend of the Tsangpo River, on the east. The highest peak of this range is Namcha Barwa. Other high peaks include Gyala Peri, sister peak to Namcha Barwa; Kangto, and Nyegyi Kangsang. The area is still poorly surveyed in general, and little visited by outsiders. It is located in the eastern side. The name "Assam Himalaya" is misleading, as some parts of this range are in southeastern Tibet, while other parts are in Bhutan and the Indian regions and states of northern Assam, Sikkim, and Arunachal Pradesh.
Rakaposhi, is a mountain in the Karakoram mountain range in the Gilgit-Baltistan region of Pakistan It is situated in the middle of the Nagar and Bagrote valleys, approximately 100 km (62 mi) north of the capital city Gilgit of the semi autonomous Gilgit-Baltistan region of Pakistan. Rakaposhi means "Snow Covered" in the local language. Rakaposhi is also known as Dumani. It is ranked 27th highest in the world.
Eric Earle Shipton CBE was an English Himalayan mountaineer.
He was awarded in 1952 the Royal Geographical Society's Founder's Gold Medal for his achievements.
The Royal Geographical Society is the UK's learned society and professional body for geography, founded in 1830 for the advancement of geographical sciences. Today, it is the leading centre for geographers and geographical learning. The Society has over 16,500 members and its work reaches millions of people each year through publications, research groups and lectures.
The Royal Geographical Society's Gold Medal consists of two separate awards: the Founder's Medal 1830 and the Patron's Medal 1838. Together they form the most prestigious of the society's awards. They are given for "the encouragement and promotion of geographical science and discovery." Royal approval is required before an award can be made.
Following his military career behind enemy lines in the Second World War, Tilman took up deep sea sailing. Sailing in deep seas on the Bristol Channel Pilot Cutter Mischief, which he purchased in 1954, and subsequently on his other pilot cutters Sea Breeze and Baroque, Tilman voyaged to Arctic and Antarctic waters in search of new and uncharted mountains to climb. On his last voyage in 1977, in his eightieth year, Tilman was invited to ship as crew in En Avant with mountaineers sailing to the South Atlantic to climb Smith Island. The expedition was led, and the boat skippered, by the youthful Simon Richardson. He and his crew aboard the old, converted steel tug made it successfully and without incident to Rio de Janeiro. Thereafter, en route to the Falkland Islands, they disappeared without trace - it was presumed the ship had foundered with all hands.
H.W.Tilman, the seven Mountain Travel Books
H.W.Tilman, the eight Sailing / Mountain exploration Books
Willi Unsoeld was an American mountaineer who, along with Tom Hornbein, were members of the first American expedition to summit Mount Everest on May 22, 1963. Unsoeld and Hornbein's legendary climb was the first ascent from the peak's west ridge, and the first major traverse of a Himalayan peak. His subsequent activities included working as a U.S. Forest Service Smokejumper, Peace Corps director in Nepal, speaker for Outward Bound, faculty member at Oregon State University and The Evergreen State College and mountaineering guide. An avalanche during a winter climb of Mount Rainier took his life.
Reinhold Andreas Messner is an Italian mountaineer, adventurer, explorer, and author from the trilingual Italian province of South Tyrol.
Nanda Devi is the second highest mountain in India, and the highest located entirely within the country. It is the 23rd-highest peak in the world. It was considered the highest mountain in the world before computations in 1808 proved Dhaulagiri to be higher. It was also the highest mountain in India until 1975 when Sikkim, the state in which Kangchenjunga is located, joined the Republic of India. It is part of the Garhwal Himalayas, and is located in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand, between the Rishiganga valley on the west and the Goriganga valley on the east. The peak, whose name means "Bliss-Giving Goddess", is regarded as the patron-goddess of the Uttarakhand Himalaya. In acknowledgment of its religious significance and for the protection of its fragile ecosystem, the peak as well as the circle of high mountains surrounding it—the Nanda Devi sanctuary—were closed to both locals and climbers in 1983. The surrounding Nanda Devi National Park was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1988.
Noel Ewart Odell FRSE FGS was an English geologist and mountaineer. In 1924 he was an oxygen officer on the Everest expedition in which George Mallory and Andrew Irvine famously perished during their summit attempt. Odell spent two weeks living above 23,000 feet (7,000m), and twice climbed to 26,800-ft and higher, all without supplemental oxygen. In 1936 Noel Odell with Bill Tilman climbed Nanda Devi, at the time the highest mountain climbed.
Louis French Reichardt is a noted American mountaineer, the first American to summit both Everest and K2. He is also director of the Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative, the largest non-federal supporter of scientific research into autism spectrum disorders and an emeritus professor of physiology and biochemistry/biophysics at UCSF, where he studies neuroscience. The character of Harold Jameson, U.C.S.F. biophysicist and mountaineer in the film K2 is based on Reichardt, though the events of his actual 1978 K2 attempt with Jim Wickwire bear little resemblance to the plot of the film.
The Ascent of Rum Doodle is a short 1956 novel by W. E. Bowman (1911–1985). It is a parody of the non-fictional chronicles of mountaineering expeditions that were popular during the 1950s, as many of the world's highest peaks were climbed for the first time. A new edition was released in 2001 with an introduction by the contemporary humorist Bill Bryson. It has been critically well received. Though a parody, it has become one of the most famous and celebrated books of mountaineering literature.
In the history of mountaineering, the world altitude record referred to the highest point on the Earth's surface which had been reached, regardless of whether that point was an actual summit. The world summit record referred to the highest mountain to have been successfully climbed. The terms are most commonly used in relation to the history of mountaineering in the Himalaya and Karakoram ranges, though modern evidence suggests that it was not until the 20th century that mountaineers in the Himalaya exceeded the heights which had been reached in the Andes. The altitude and summit records rose steadily during the early 20th century until 1953, when the ascent of Mount Everest made the concept obsolete.
John Roskelley is an American mountain climber and author. He made first ascents and notable ascents of 7000 and 8000 meter peaks in Nepal, India, and Pakistan. His son Jess Roskelley was also a mountain climber.
The 1953 British Mount Everest expedition was the ninth mountaineering expedition to attempt the first ascent of Mount Everest, and the first confirmed to have succeeded when Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay reached the summit on Friday, 29 May 1953. Led by Colonel John Hunt, it was organised and financed by the Joint Himalayan Committee. News of the expedition's success reached London in time to be released on the morning of Queen Elizabeth II's coronation, 2 June.
Leslie Vickery Bryant, known as Dan Bryant, was a New Zealand school teacher and a mountain climber. He was a member of the 1935 British Mount Everest reconnaissance expedition, which was a preliminary to the full expedition of 1936 that attempted the summit. However in 1935 Bryant did not acclimatise well to altitude above 23,000 feet (7,000 m), and so was not included in the party for 1936. He was a very accomplished ice climber, and was well-liked on expeditions. These two factors led, indirectly, to his compatriot Edmund Hillary becoming a member of the successful 1953 British Mount Everest expedition.
The 1936 British Mount Everest expedition was a complete failure, and raised questions concerning the planning of such expeditions. This was Hugh Ruttledge's second expedition as leader. Heavy snows and an early monsoon forced their retreat on several occasions, and on the final attempt two climbers narrowly survived an avalanche. This was the first expedition in which climbers were able to carry portable radios.
Led by Bill Tilman, the 1938 British Mount Everest expedition was a low-key, low-cost expedition which was unlucky in encountering a very early monsoon. The weather conditions defeated the attempts to reach the summit. The North Col was climbed for the first time from the west and an altitude of 27,200 feet (8,300 m) was reached on the North Ridge.
Ang Tharkay was a Nepalese mountain climber and explorer who acted as sherpa and later sirdar for many Himalayan expeditions. He was "beyond question the outstanding sherpa of his era" and he introduced Tenzing Norgay to the world of mountaineering.
After World War II, with Tibet closing its borders and Nepal becoming considerably more open, Mount Everest reconnaissance from Nepal became possible for the first time culminating in the successful ascent of 1953. In 1950 there was a highly informal trek to what was to become Everest Base Camp and photographs were taken of a possible route ahead. Next year the 1951 British Mount Everest reconnaissance expedition reconnoitred various possible routes to Mount Everest from the south and the only one they considered feasible was the one via the Khumbu Icefall, Western Cwm and South Col. In 1952, while the Swiss were making an attempt on the summit that nearly succeeded, the British practised their high-altitude Himalayan technique by attempting Cho Oyu, nearby to the west.
The 1951 British Mount Everest reconnaissance expedition ran between 27 August 1951 and 21 November 1951 with Eric Shipton as leader.
Pasang Kikuli (1911–1939) was a Nepalese mountain climber and explorer who acted as sherpa and later sirdar for many Himalayan expeditions. He died on the 1939 American Karakoram expedition to K2, attempting to rescue a stranded climber.