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The Tiger Badge

The Tiger Badge

The outbreak of WWII inevitably meant an end to all large ex­peditions, but The HJ Vol. XII appeared in 1940 with a note by Joan Townend on how Tiger Badges for Sherpas had been decided on. The name Tiger had been in use for Sherpas who had gone high ever since the 1924 Everest Expedition. It was now felt that the better Sherpas should be in some way distinguished and rewarded by higher rates of pay (which were only to apply when their special skills were required; otherwise it might mean that they would find it more difficult to get employment on ordinary expeditions). Specially selected Sherpas were to be awarded Tiger Badges. The Himalayan Club Committee was to take great pains in the years to come to ensure that the right Sherpas got the awards.

Thus the possession of the TIGER badge came to mean that a certain Sherpa was of exceptional skill in the higher reaches and thus deserved higher rates of pay above the snow line – this bestowed upon the porters respect and status. This relationship continued down the years.

The last of the TIGER badges were given to select porters of the Indian 1965 Everest expedition. During the Club’s Millenium celebrations in 2000, tribute was paid to three surviving TIGERS: Ang Tsering, Nawang Gombu and Nawang Topgay. Ang Tsering subsequently passed away in 2001, Nawang Gombu in 2011 and Nawang Topgay in 2012 bringing to an end the era of the great Sherpa Tigers.

The official list of awards of the Tiger Badge up to 31 August, 1967 is as given below.

Date of Minute Name H/C No. Expedition Remarks
30-05-1939 Lewa 46 Everest 1938 Died (year not known)
  Pasang Kikuli 8 Not known Died 1939
  Kusang Namgir 9 Not known Died 1950
  Ang Tharkay 19 Everest 1938
  Wangdi Norbu 25 Not known Died 1952
  Lakpa Tenzing 30 Everest 1938
  Renzing 32 Not known Died 1947
  Tenzing Norgay 48 Everest 1938
  Dawa Thondup 49 K2 1939
  Dawa Tsering 53 Died 1939
  Palden 54 Died
  Pasang Dawa Lama 139
  Lobsang 144 Died 1945
  Ang Tenzing 3 Died 1949
31-04-1940 Ang Tenzing 51
  Aila 61
  Gender 91 Reported dead
21-07-1953 Ang Tempa III 155 Everest 1953
  Anullu 170 Everest 1953
  Ajiba 10 Everest 1952
  Ang Tsering 36 Everest 1952
  Sarki 151 Everest 1952
  Da Namgyal 157 Everest 1952
  Dawa Tenzing 173 Everest 1953
  Ang Nima 176 Everest 1953
  Pasang Phuta 188 Everest 1953
  Ang Namgyal 190 Everest 1953
  Gompu 191 Everest 1953
30-05-1956 I-la Tenzing 85 Kanchengjunga 1955
  Ang Norbu 172 Kanchengjunga 1955 Died
  Tashi I 178 Kanchenjunga 1955
  Ang Temba IV 179 Kanchengjunga 1955
  Urken 232 Kanchenjunga 1955  
  Gyalzen Nuru 163 Makalu 1955 Died 1961
  Gundin 167 Makalu 1955
  Ang Phuta 186 Makalu 1955
  Ang Nima 132 Dhaulagiri 1955
12-02-1960 Sonam Girney Nil Everest 1960
  Ang Norbu Nil Everest 1960
  Da Norbu 193 Everest 1960
  Pemba Sundar 182 Everest 1960
27-04-1962 Wangdi Nil Jannu 1959
  Da Norbu 161 Jannu 1959
09-08-1962 Mingma Tsering 340 Makalu 1961
  Pemba Tenzing 341 Makalu 1961
  Nima Dorje 345 Makalu 1961
23-07-1964 Ang Tshering 203 Everest 1963
  Choetari 360 Everest 1963
  Girmin Dorje 229 Everest 1963
  Nawang Dorje 354 Everest 1963
  Ang Nyima 355 Everest 1963
  Phu Dorje 351 Everest 1963
30-07-1965 Dawa Norbu (Darjeeling) 322 Everest 1965
  Tashi (Darjeeling) 236 Everest 1965
  Karma (Darjeeling) 326 Everest 1965 Died 1967
  Sona (Darjeeling) 357 Everest 1965
  Kalden (Gangtok) 309 Everest 1965
  Tenzing Nendra (Khumjung) 362 Everest 1965
  Nawang Hilla (Khumjung) 363 Everest 1965
  Pasang Tendi (Khumjung) 364 Everest 1965
  Mingma Tshering (Phorche) 365 Everest 1965
  Tenzing Gyatso (Phorche) 366 Everest 1965
  Pemba Tharke (Phorche) 367 Everest 1965
  Nima Tenzing (Pangboche) 368 Everest 1965
  Dawa Tenzing (Namche) 369 Everest 1965  
Tiger Badge
Date of Minute Name H/C No. Expedition Remarks
30-05-1939 Lewa 46 Everest 1938 Died (year not known)
  Pasang Kikuli 8 Not known Died 1939
  Kusang Namgir 9 Not known Died 1950
  Ang Tharkay 19 Everest 1938
  Wangdi Norbu 25 Not known Died 1952
  Lakpa Tenzing 30 Everest 1938
  Renzing 32 Not known Died 1947
  Tenzing Norgay 48 Everest 1938
  Dawa Thondup 49 K2 1939
  Dawa Tsering 53 Died 1939
  Palden 54 Died
  Pasang Dawa Lama 139
  Lobsang 144 Died 1945
  Ang Tenzing 3 Died 1949
31-04-1940 Ang Tenzing 51
  Aila 61
  Gender 91 Reported dead
21-07-1953 Ang Tempa III 155 Everest 1953
  Anullu 170 Everest 1953
  Ajiba 10 Everest 1952
  Ang Tsering 36 Everest 1952
  Sarki 151 Everest 1952
  Da Namgyal 157 Everest 1952
  Dawa Tenzing 173 Everest 1953
  Ang Nima 176 Everest 1953
  Pasang Phuta 188 Everest 1953
  Ang Namgyal 190 Everest 1953
  Gompu 191 Everest 1953
30-05-1956 I-la Tenzing 85 Kanchengjunga 1955
  Ang Norbu 172 Kanchengjunga 1955 Died
  Tashi I 178 Kanchenjunga 1955
  Ang Temba IV 179 Kanchengjunga 1955
  Urken 232 Kanchenjunga 1955  
  Gyalzen Nuru 163 Makalu 1955 Died 1961
  Gundin 167 Makalu 1955
  Ang Phuta 186 Makalu 1955
  Ang Nima 132 Dhaulagiri 1955
12-02-1960 Sonam Girney Nil Everest 1960
  Ang Norbu Nil Everest 1960
  Da Norbu 193 Everest 1960
  Pemba Sundar 182 Everest 1960
27-04-1962 Wangdi Nil Jannu 1959
  Da Norbu 161 Jannu 1959
09-08-1962 Mingma Tsering 340 Makalu 1961
  Pemba Tenzing 341 Makalu 1961
  Nima Dorje 345 Makalu 1961
23-07-1964 Ang Tshering 203 Everest 1963
  Choetari 360 Everest 1963
  Girmin Dorje 229 Everest 1963
  Nawang Dorje 354 Everest 1963
  Ang Nyima 355 Everest 1963
  Phu Dorje 351 Everest 1963
30-07-1965 Dawa Norbu (Darjeeling) 322 Everest 1965
  Tashi (Darjeeling) 236 Everest 1965
  Karma (Darjeeling) 326 Everest 1965 Died 1967
  Sona (Darjeeling) 357 Everest 1965
  Kalden (Gangtok) 309 Everest 1965
  Tenzing Nendra (Khumjung) 362 Everest 1965
  Nawang Hilla (Khumjung) 363 Everest 1965
  Pasang Tendi (Khumjung) 364 Everest 1965
  Mingma Tshering (Phorche) 365 Everest 1965
  Tenzing Gyatso (Phorche) 366 Everest 1965
  Pemba Tharke (Phorche) 367 Everest 1965
  Nima Tenzing (Pangboche) 368 Everest 1965
  Dawa Tenzing (Namche) 369 Everest 1965