26 May Son of Tenzing Norgay visits Woodstock
Jamling Tenzing Norgay, the son of legendary Sherpa Tenzing Norgay, who first conquered Mount Everest with Sir Edmund Hillary in 1953, visited Woodstock and the Hanifl Centre during April.
Mr Norgay, who has followed in his late father’s footsteps and is also a mountain guide, runs a mountaineering centre in Darjeeling, offering treks in the Himalayas.
Mr Norgay also reached the peak of Everest in 1996, with a team of mountaineers including Ed Viesturs and Araceli Segarra, which was documented in a film entitledEverest.
He said his father climbed many of the mountains close to Mussoorie as he served his apprenticeship in mountaineering, becoming the most sought-after Sherpa of the era.
“My father gained an excellent reputation as a Sherpa. He tried to climb Everest six times before he finally succeeded. He failed twice in 1952, once just 400 metres from the top, when bad weather set in.
“In 1953 when the British received their permit to climb Everest, he was immediately contacted by Colonel Charles Wylie, organising secretary of the expedition, as no one knew the mountain like my father.”
Mr Norgay enjoyed visiting the Hanifl Centre during his trip to Woodstock, where he was given a tour by Mr Kutty, head of outdoor education at Woodstock. He was impressed with the facilities.
“It’s very good, I actually wasn’t aware of the centre before I came,” he said. “It’s really important in this internet and computer-dominated age young people get out and see what’s in their backyard.
“They need to appreciate nature and be aware of their natural environment, so it’s good to see that going on at Woodstock.” Mr Norgay also met up with Prashant Allay, rock climbing instructor at Woodstock who trained at the Tenzing Norgay Climbing Club in Darjeeling, and staff members Thupten and Dolma Chophel.
Mr Norgay has written a book about his Everest ascent and the role of Sherpas entitled Touching My Father’s Soul: A Sherpa’s Journey to the Top of Everest.