Himalayan Journal vol.13
The Himalayan Journal
Vol.13

Publication year:
1946

Editor:
C. W. F. Noyce
Index
  1. 1939 KARAKORAM EXPEDITION
    (PETER MOTT)
  2. SOME MINOR EXPEDITIONS IN THE HIMALAYA
    (T. H. SOMERVELL)
  3. THE TWO GRIEFS
    (PHILIP WOODRUFF)
  4. IN SIKKIM-THE TENT PEAK
    (E. GROB)
  5. THE MOUNTAINS OF CENTRAL LAHUL
    (Ludwig Krenek)
  6. CHOMIOMO AND PAUHUNRI
    (T. H. TILLY AND G. W. F. NOYCE)
  7. THE KASHMIR SAPPHIRE MINES
    (RICHARD V. GAINES)
  8. THE AFDIGAR PASS IN HUNZA
    (R. G. F. SCHOMBERG)
  9. AIRCREW MOUNTAIN CENTRE, 1945
    (J. A. JACKSON)
  10. EXPEDITIONS
  11. IN MEMORIAM
  12. NOTES
  13. REVIEWS
  14. CLUB PROCEEDINGS
  15. EDITORIAL

IN MEMORIAM

CHARLES GRANVILLE BRUCE

1866-1939

[By courtesy of the Alpine Journal.]

Charles Granville Bruce was born in 1866, and obtained his first Commission, through the Militia, in the Oxfordshire Light Infantry in 1887, but, having soon decided on a career in India, in preference to one in the British Service, he was, in 1889, appointed to the 5th Gurkha Rifles-a regiment in which he served most of his military life, and of which he was Colonel from 1931 to 1936.

Active service with the Military Police in Burma gave him his first experience of war, and this was followed in rapid succession by the Frontier expeditions of the Black Mountain in 1891, Miranzai in 1891, and Waziristan in 1894. The next few years were peaceful ones spent in the regiment as a company officer and adjutant, though he took every opportunity of exploring the neighbouring passes of the Khagan valley and the closer Himalaya, and making for himself a name as a mountaineer of repute. In 1892 he joined Mr. Martin Conway's expedition to the Karakoram, and in 1895 he was a member of Mr. Mummery's tragic exploration of Nanga Parbat, from which he returned with an attack of suppressed mumps, necessitating a severe operation, which affected him all his life.

In the meanwhile he had commenced a serious study of Gurkhali (the chief language of the Gurkhas) as well as some of the minor dialects, and became extraordinarily proficient and fluent in them all. With most oriental races Bruce had an uncommon sympathy; he seemed to be able to enter into their thoughts and speak to them as one of themselves, while he had a wonderful tolerance for, and understanding of their minds, which gave him an influence over them greater than any others could ever acquire. His never- failing humour and love of fun, often on the horse-play side, appealed especially to the simple mind of the Gurkha, over whom he gained a lasting hold.

Besides wrestling, fencing, running, and almost every form of athletic sport (except tennis), hill climbing was his main hobby, and to him was chiefly due the institution of the annual Khud Race, unsurpassed as a spectacle among athletic contests, which firmly established the Gurkha as practically invincible on the hillside, and which in effect also speeded up military hill work in general. At the same time Bruce wholeheartedly interested himself in organizing as Scouts men specially trained to work on the steepest hillsides and selected for their wiry physique, fleetness of foot, and skill as marksmen.

The general uprising along the whole of the north-west frontier in 1897 put to the severest test the training that these men had been subjected to. A small contingent of Scouts, numbering about 120 men, from the 3rd and 5th Gurkhas, was organized under command of Capt. F. L. Lucas, with Lieuts. Bruce and Tillard (3rd Gurkhas) under him. These Scouts did yeoman service during the ensuing Tirah campaign, the hardest ever fought on the Frontier till then. They were called on for advance, flank and rearguard work by day and night; independent and dangerous missions were given them to do; no column felt complete without the Scouts accompanying them, and the success they achieved in protecting their own troops and taking toll of the enemy makes, for all time, a proud chapter of Frontier history. This original small contingent was later raised to a full battalion, 600 strong, and still under Lucas and Bruce finished the campaign in the Khyber area.

It was at this time that owing to Bruce's representations 'shorts' were introduced into the Army for the first time. The Scouts led the way by cutting off at the knee the long khaki trousers then worn with puttees, thus adding to freedom of movement in rough places. In spite of some official opposition, shorts were thus born, and their vogue became universal throughout the British Army. Incidentally it may be of some interest to note that these Scouts were the first of the whole Indian Army to be re-armed with the magazine Lee-Enfield rifle, in place of the old Martini, which from then on was gradually discarded, for up to then the British and Indian regiments of the Army in India had not been similarly armed.

Bruce, for his outstanding services in this campaign, was twice mentioned in Dispatches and was promoted Brevet Major. His name as a trainer of Scouts was made, and for many years afterwards he held an annual Scout camp for the instruction of officers in hill-lore, rapid movement and reconnaissance. Those attending these camps, besides the specialized military knowledge acquired, brought back with them many happy memories of nights spent under the stars, and the boisterousness and skill as a raconteur of their ever-cheery commander.

For the next seventeen years Bruce had not the good fortune to go on service again, but his reputation grew as a fine soldier, a good friend and companion, and a great mountaineer.

In May 1914 he was given command of the 1 /6th Gurkha Rifles, who also, like the 5th, were permanently stationed at Abbottabad, and in August of that year the Great War broke out. In November

the 1/6th sailed from India for Egypt, and forming part of the 29th Indian Brigade were encamped at Kantara on the Suez Canal, while his old regiment, the i/5th, in another brigade, camped at Ismailia, farther down the Canal.

Here, in February 1915, the Turkish attack on Egypt was met and repulsed, and three months later the Gallipoli campaign was launched. The 29th Indian Brigade, under Major-General Cox, joined the 29th Division at Helles on May 1, and from then onwards the 6th Gurkhas took a very prominent part in all major operations till the v evacuation in December. In May, the 6th, under Bruce, most skilfully seized and permanently established themselves on an important tactical position on the extreme left of the line, called thereafter Gurkha Bluff, in memory of that fine feat of arms. Early in June the 1/5th Gurkhas joined the 29th Brigade and from then onwards these two battalions fought alongside each other till the end of the campaign. In the battle of 28th June casualties amongst officers and men were so severe and strengths so much reduced, that Bruce took over command of both battalions and worked them as one for the remainder of that desperate conflict, which lasted to 5th July, by which time the ground in front of their area was strewn with the corpses of 3,000 dead Turks, and the number of British officers left in the whole Brigade (including the Staff) totalled only eight. But unfortunately Bruce was severely wounded in the leg during the latter phase of the battle, was evacuated home and was not reported fit for service again till 1916. He was promoted Colonel for his brilliant work on the Peninsula.

While in Gallipoli it may be mentioned that he found an opportunity of making friends with the French troops who held the extreme right of the line at Helles, from Eski Himarlik Point westwards, some two miles distant from Gurkha Bluff, and that he managed to obtain from them a small keg of wine, which was duly appreciated in his own mess. It is not on record how the keg was transported from one flank to the other, but it is not unlikely that the Colonel carried it himself, for in his scouting days in the Khyber, to keep himself fit, he used to carry his orderly on his back many hundred feet up to an eminence called Mount Pisgah, from which the plains of Jellalabad, the Promised Land, were visible. And, talking of wine, it is no secret that Bruce was a convivial man and liked a glass of whisky as much as anyone. But when in Egypt he found it advisable to become a strict teetotaller, he did it completely and did not allow this sudden change in his habits to affect his manner in any way; he sang his Welsh songs, and danced his dances and laughed with and at himself with as much gusto on water as he had formerly done on a stronger beverage. In this he showed a fine example of great self-control.

On Bruce's return to India in 1916, he was appointed Brigadier- General and given command of the Bunnu Brigade and the North Waziristan Column operating against the Wazirs, and he also took a minor part in the Afghan campaign of 1919, for which he was twice mentioned in Dispatches and awarded the C.B. But active and powerful man as Bruce was, he was not at his best in great heat, and Bannu is one of the hottest spots on the whole Frontier. He stood it for two hot weathers, but with the advent of the third, his health broke down, and a Medical Board invalided him out of the Service, advising him to live thereafter a very quiet and sedentary life, as he was no longer fit for any great exertion. To what extent he carried out this advice the records of two of the Mount Everest expeditions bear testimony. And so in 1920 he retired from the Army, after thirty-two years' distinguished service; but his greatest mountaineering feats were yet to come, of which accounts are given elsewhere.

In 1931 he was appointed Colonel of the 5th Royal Gurkha Rifles, to the great joy of himself and of all ranks of his old regiment among whom his name will be long remembered. During the tenure of his colonelcy he several times went out to India to visit the regiment, spending many cheery days with one or other of the battalions in Waziristan or in the Khyber, but finally, in 1936, on attaining his 70th year of age, he had to vacate this appointment and sever his career with the Indian Army, which he had served so well.

Charlie Bruce was a unique character, full of mirth and full of matured wisdom, widely read in many abstruse subjects, and of a very lovable disposition. The annual gatherings at the Gurkha Brigade Dinner will in future lose much of their hilarity by his absence, but talk of 'Old Bruiser' and legends about him will endure for many years. And so, when we took our last farewell of him in St. Martin's Church, in July 1939, the gathering of his many friends was not a sad one, but was almost merry and bright, and its tone undoubtedly was one that Charlie himself would have been the first to enjoy.

M. R. W. Nightingale.

Probably no man since the time of the Schlagintweits had a wider knowledge of the Himalaya than General Bruce. No one ever had so intimate a knowledge of so many of its peoples. Bruce's climbing experience extended from the Safed Koh to Sikkim. He was with Conway on his notable expedition to the Karakoram, and with Mummery and Collie in the first attempt on Nanga Parbat. The snows of Khagan and Kulu were his happy hunting ground. In 1907, the Jubilee, year of the Alpine Club, he nearly arranged the first exploration of Mount Everest; but at the last moment the plan was vetoed in London for political reasons. Again in 1910 he got leave from the late Maharaja of Nepal to explore Everest from the Nepalese side; but again at the last moment this had to be given up for fear of arousing religious hostility.

By profession a soldier, he was an acknowledged master in the difficult technique of fighting on the north-west frontier. His influence with his own Gurkhas was phenomenal; indeed, his desperate wound at Gallipoli was counted equal to the loss of a battalion. But mine is not the pen for an account of that side of his life. I never heard him allude to his fighting days except once: a lady asked him about his Frontier experiences, and he merely replied, with a modesty invariable in my experience, T think I have run away from every Pathan tribe on the Frontier at one time or another.' He was equally modest about his mountain climbing, as I well remember when I first met him forty years ago at Zermatt, with some of his Gurkhas, whom he was training in Alpine work.

His greatest contribution to mountaineering came through his wide knowledge of the tribes of the Himalaya. It was he who first trained Gurkhas for serious mountain work. He started the Baltis of Kashmir and the Bhotias of Garhwal on the upward path, a lead which Kellas so ably followed. But his great discovery was the value of the Sherpa, a Tibetan tribe long settled in Nepal. These, with their purer Tibetan cousins, have been the mainstay of every Himalayan expedition of recent years. Owing to him it is no longer necessary-though it may still be extremely advantageous-to take European Alpine-trained guides and porters to the Himalaya. The cause of his success was his sympathy with and knowledge of the language and habits of these varied peoples.

In 1923 he was elected President of the Alpine Club. In 1915 he was awarded the Gill Memorial, and in 1925 the Founder's Medal of the Royal Geographical Society. He was an Honorary Member of S.A.C., C.A.F., and G.H.M.

It was the adventure, not scientific interests, which absorbed him during his climbing holidays and longer expeditions. Of the latter, the Everest expedition of 1922 stands out. He made an ideal leader. But it is as a companion, the perfect one, that I most remember him: especially with Arnold Mumm and myself in Garhwal in 1907. He was the most invariably considerate, pleasant and uncomplaining companion it is possible to imagine. Not even the injured knee which deprived him of climbing Trisul with his devoted Subedar Kharbir Burathoki drew one word of disappointment or complaint from him. Bruce's name became a household word: but only his friends knew his real worth.

T. G. Longstaff.

Charlie Bruce was a half brother of the late Lord Aberdare and uncle of the present Peer. He married a daughter of the late Colonel Sir E. F. Campbell, Bart., who predeceased him in 1932 (A. J., vol. xliv, p. 329). They had the misfortune to lose their only child, a son, who died as an infant in the Himalaya. This sad event, so Charlie once told me, was the greatest blow in his life.

I seem always to have known him, but it was probably after his family had become connected with mine by marriage that I saw most of him. He was our leader in the 1922 Everest Expedition as well as in that of 1924, and none could have desired a more ideal one. There was no fuss and no worry; his sense of humour, his cheerfulness just smoothed away any difficulty. Gurkhas, porters, Tibetan natives, all at once acknowledged the great Leader and came under his spell. I can still hear the yells of delight from a small band of natives descending from the Jelep La, who had recognized his thick-set figure from afar. I can still see their greeting of him which was terminated only by Bruce catching hold of the foremost by the slack of his breeches and applying some resounding slaps, while volubly relating amidst shrieks of laughter a Rabelaisian story to the rest. With the Lamas, Dzongpens and Tibetan officials, Charlie's dignity was but equalled by his geniality.

Our only trouble was to prevent his going too high on the mountain; his great heart was not perhaps practically equal to 20,000 feet. Organically, he had not altogether recovered from his wounds, while his age was too advanced. He still appeared impervious to cold; he used to sit or stand about for hours in the bitter weather of the Base or No. I camps, clad only in khaki shorts, vest and a thin jacket. The photo-group facing p. 46 of The Assault on Mt. Everest, 1922, is characteristic, with the rest of us mostly muffled up to the ears. But once only in six months did I see him ruffled, and that was when a well-meaning individual, one of those 'who only England know', referred disparagingly to the colour of Charlie's Gurkhas. Bruce rose to his feet blazing with wrath, while I hurriedly interposed myself between him and his luckless victim. To my relief, he burst out laughing-for truly the honour of the Gurkhas was as his own.

One more reminiscence, this time at the Sorbonne in November 1922. After our joint lecture and when Bruce had been presented with the Gold Medal of the Societe de Geographie, he and I were ushered into a small room where the late Marechal Fayolle and that gallant veteran General Gouraud-now our Honorary Member- were awaiting us. Charlie's knowledge of French was-as elementary as the Frenchmen's English, but somehow Bruce and Gouraud ascertained that each, previously unknown to the other and badly wounded, had been evacuated on the same trawler from Cape Helles. Gouraud thereupon gently put his one arm round Charlie and embraced him-they had met but that once since 1915. This simple act seemed to me deeply pathetic, a forecast of the further Alliance of September 1939.

Charles Granville Bruce, 1866-1939

Charles Granville Bruce, 1866-1939



(By courtesy of the Alpine Journal )   J. N. Collie, 1859-1942

(By courtesy of the Alpine Journal ) J. N. Collie, 1859-1942




Bruce contributed four important books to Himalayan literature, Twenty Tears in the Himalaya, Kulu and Lahoul (.A.J. vol. xxviii, p. 415), Assault on Mount Everest, 1922 (A.J., vol. xxxv, p. 306), Himalayan Wanderer (A.J., vol. xlvii, p. 178). All breathe the indomitable jovial spirit of the author-especially the latter with its characteristic tale of M. de Blacasse. To the Alpine Journal, Bruce contributed 'The Ascent of Ishpero Zorn' (vol. xvi, pp. 494 sqq.), 'Christmas at Dharmsala' (vol. xvii, pp. 234 sqq.), 'Mountaineering in the Himalayas' (vol. xix, p. 321; vol. xx, pp. 305 sqq.), 'Himalayan Contrasts' (vol. xliii, pp. 1 sqq.), &c.

Charlie Bruce had many relations while all his acquaintances were his friends. How many of these, I sometimes wonder, have realized what his life has meant-and still means-to those gallant Himalayan soldiers and sturdy, great-hearted natives, whose loyalty to the British Empire and to Bruce Sahib remains equally illimitable?

E. L. Strutt.

JOHN NORMAN COLLIE

1859-1942

The passing of Norman Collie at the ripe age of 82 years leaves a great gap in many circles, and not least in that of the mountaineering fraternity. Born in 1859 at Alderley Edge, in Cheshire, he was educated at Charterhouse, Clifton, University College, Bristol, and Wurzburg University where he gained the degree of Ph.D. He was appointed Professor of Organic Chemistry at University College, London, in 1902, and held this appointment until his retirement. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1896, and gained many other honours. But it is with his mountaineering prowess that we are mostly concerned. His knowledge of the mountains of many countries and continents was unequalled by any of his contemporaries, and his extraordinary faculty of discovering the best, and often the only route up a mountain, was a great asset to his companions, at a time when the era of guideless climbing was beginning. An instance of this is the famous 'Collie Step' in Moss Ghyll on Scafell, where he hacked a step in the rock with his axe, which enabled the ascent to be made. In Scotland, too, he made ma ny new climbs, and it was disappointing, on achieving some good clinab, to find a cairn erected by Collie, of which no report had been made. In Skye, to which he was devoted, his discovery of the Cioch from a shadow noticed in a photograph of the face was another instance of his faculty of observation. In the Alps, with Hastings, Mummery and Slingsby, he made the first ascent of the Requin, the first ascent from the south-west of the Aiguille du Plan, and the first traverse of the Grepon, and later, with Hastings and Mummery, the first ascent from the north of the Col des Courtes and the first guideless ascent of Mont Blanc by the Brenva route. In Norway, too, many first ascents were made of the magnificent rock peaks of the Lofoten Islands, which spring direct from the sea. Higraftind and Rulten amongst them, of which Collie obtained some of his most beautiful photographs.

In 1895, with Hastings and Mummery, his well-tried companions in the Alps, he visited the Himalaya and made the first exploration of Nanga Parbat and the first ascent of Diomirai peak, 19,000 feet, with Mummery. A graphic account of this is given in his book. After this, the attempt was made on Nanga Parbat. Collie was not well enough to go on, but Mummery and Ragobir persevered to a height of 20,000 feet, after two nights on the mountain, when Ragobir became ill and they had to return. It was them decided to attempt the ascent from the Rakiot Nullah, and Mix mmery with Ragobir and Goman Singh set off to try to force the Diama pass while the others went by the Ganalo Nullah and the Red pass, and after much difficulty reached the rendezvous. There was no sign of Mummery, and the face, by which they would have had to descend from the Diama pass, seemed quite hopeless. It had been arranged that, if the pass was found impossible, Mummery would descend and follow the others.

Collie's time was nearly up, and while Hastings returned to the Diazmirai Nullah, he descended to Astor to await news from Hastings. When it came and reported that the provisions left for the emergency and the camps were untouched, they decided to explore the upper part of the Diamirai Nullah, but when they got there, winter conditions had supervened and avalanches were roar-ing down, making the valley impassable, and the search had relui ctantly to be abandoned. The last hope had gone.

Two years later he organized the first expedition by British climbers to the Canadian Rockies and in his six visits to this region he ranade many first ascents and did some fine exploring work, which was graphically described in his book, written in collaboration with H. 1M. Stutfield.

Very near to his heart were the Isle of Skye and the Goolins. For many years he and Colin Philip, the artist, shared Glen Brittle Lodge, and explored them very thoroughly. Later he was to be found at Sligachan most of the summer. I met him there at the time of the German attempt on Nanga Parbat, and he told me then, and showed on a photograph, that they were much farther from the summit than they thought and that enormous difficulties and dangers still confronted them, as was afterwards proved.

The last four years of his life were spent there, and there he died and was buried by the side of his faithful friend and gillie, John Mackenzie.

His versatility was exceptional. Scientist, painter, photographer and writer, in all these parts he excelled. As a mountaineer his judgement, endurance and skill made him a leader amongst men, and he was always ready to help the younger and weaker brethren.

A connoisseur of art, he had a wonderful collection of jade and precious stones and was an admirable judge of food and wines, as those who were privileged to be his guests know. At Sligachan his skill as an angler would provide the hotel with a breakfast of beautiful pink trout. An outstanding personality has been taken from us, and those who knew him will always preserve the memory of a great man.

W. N. Ling.

[The following by courtesy of the Alpine Journal.']

Perhaps the chief characteristic of Norman Collie's mountaineering career was what may be called 'inspired direction'. As a topographer and pathfinder he stood, among all the expeditions of which he was a member, in a class almost by himself. Not only was he expert as an iceman, vide the upper seracs of the Brenva Mont Blanc, or rock climber, but he was pre-eminently a great 'mountaineer'. Many leaders have owed much to the inspired direction of their party. Where, to quote only the names of departed, would Daniel Maquignaz have been without Farrar? Where Venetz without Burgener?

One instance on a classic peak may be quoted. In the first ascent of the often attempted Dent du Requin, the problem was solved at once by Collie: a descent of 200 feet of the east face thus enabling the party to attain the south-east arete. Collie on his first and only visit to the Himalaya appreciated fully the overwhelming dangers of avalanches. He and Bruce have spoken often to me of the risks taken by Mummery in his attempts on Nanga Parbat. The latter, relying on his wonderful skill, committed himself and his Gurkhas to chances which might be taken in the Alps but never in the great Himalaya. Had Collie been present with his inspired direction, who knows whether the accident of 1895 would not have been avoided? It seems probable that, as Mountaineers', Collie and Cecil Slingsby had few rivals in their generation.

E. L. Strutt.

Norman Collie was all but the last survivor of a group of great mountaineers who followed upon the first Alpine pioneers and prophets, carried climbing into a score of other countries and ranges, and by their feats and writings stimulated a vast increase in the mountain following. Freshfield, Conway, Slingsby, Bruce, Collie, Mummery, each found his own new territory and wrote his own prophetic books of adventure. And of them all, perhaps, Norman Collie was the man of the greatest natural endowment and the man most exclusively devoted to mountains. I cannot write of his scientific attainment, although I used to hear his great predecessor in the London chair, Sir William Ramsay, pay tribute to his discoveries long before I knew of him as a mountaineer. But I feel bound to record, even here, that, in a characteristically sardonic aside, Collie once observed: Tf anyone ever happens to write an obituary of me, I want two things said-I first discovered Neon, and I took the first X-ray photographs.'

If he was a great scientist, he was no less a gifted artist, an aesthete in the finest sense, a romantic-minded Celt and a robust athlete never out of training. His accomplishments were many, and he lived, almost literally, for beauty. He painted effectively, and made an admirable portrait of his gillie and friend John Mackenzie, the only authentic local guide ever produced in our islands, whom Collie himself had trained, and beside whom he now lies buried. As an art connoisseur and collector he had few, if any, superiors in his own sphere. His knowledge covered the whole field of Chinese and Japanese art, porcelain, ivories, bronzes, embroideries, and our museums availed themselves of his infallible knowledge of date and authorship. The sensitiveness of his aesthetic judgement was not only of the eye, but equally of touch and taste and smell. He was an authority on wines-especially French wines-and on cigars, both of which he always bought himself at sales, and he was an expert judge of food and cooking. He was widely read, especially in English literature and medieval science, and he was a collector of editions and beautiful types and bindings. His rooms, those which he occupied in Campden Grove from his student days, until they were pulled down, and his later house in Gower Street, were piled high with variegated treasures, in seeming chaos. But everything in sight, china and jade and metals and books and paintings, was so arranged as to pick up and repeat colour and lighting on a scheme designed for his own pleasure. To a degree almost unfair, among collectors, his scientific knowledge complemented his artistic judgement: he could buy precious stones on sight at auctions or on the docks, and at bargain prices, since his expert touch told him as much of their nature by weight and feel as his eye by their colour. And he would dilate on the multiple glory he could obtain from the colours of jewels, when he bombarded them with rays in his laboratory.

Of north Irish extraction, he was a Celt in imagination; mysticism and poetry occupied his thoughts as much as scientific speculation. Here, again, his contradictions helped one another, as in his photography, in which he produced some of the most artistically perfect pictures of his time, and in colour photography and colour processes, in which he was a pioneer. In his speeches indeed, and at times in his writing, the poetry could overweight his style. But he was a thrilling raconteur of eerie stories and folk mystery, of which it was impossible to say how much he himself believed. The best of them had the same blend of science and romanticism; as in the famous adventure of the Long Grey Man of Ben MacDhui, in which much of the grue depended on recalling the exact height of the ordnance cairn; and in the adventure of the haunted and nerve-shaking sea cave in Donegal, where his scientific coda, that the tide-driven air was playing upon the cavern mouth as upon a great organ pipe, so that, within it, the slow vibrations shattered through one while remaining inaudible, was almost as uncanny as the peasants' supernatural monster. He was an originator, in every one of his interests. He lived only to explore, no matter how hazardously. And mountaineering, with its many appeals to his abnormally acute senses, best satisfied this passion. New ascents in the Alps, plotted beforehand with Slingsby, Mummery and Hastings, and referred to only half humorously in their correspondence as 'the Quest'; new regions in the Rockies, in the Himalaya, in Norway and in every still unknown corner of these islands. He first explored alone many of the now popular climbing cliffs in Scotland, Ireland and the smaller islands.

He was one of the most daring of the Lakeland pioneers, and no one probably has ever approached his detailed knowledge of the Scottish and Irish sea cliffs. His attachment to the Island of Skye grew steadily with the years, and he has given his reasons for preferring it to all other hill country and ranges, in the best of his writings. For climbing and exploring he was as gifted physically as temperamentally. In spite of a gaunt and grey-silvery aspect that suggested fragility and even senescence, he was never ill and never tired; he remained erect, agile and hardy into great age, and he had his machinery and breathing under such unusual control that, as he told me, he would often light his pipe as a preliminary to attempting a stiff rock problem.

His icemanship and rock technique were equally first rate. He is never known to have made a mislead or a false step, and on more than one occasion his skill and nerve saved a party or an individual from disaster.

His eye for country, for reconnaissance in a new range or for a route up a complicated face was unsurpassed, even among his accomplished colleagues. He was an excellent and resourceful companion in difficult conditions; but he was also entirely happy alone, in any weather and facing any risks. Much of his early wandering went unrecorded; and in later life he might now and again chuckle grimly over accounts of new climbs on Scottish cliffs, and remark with the familiar saturnine sidelift of his lip: 'They'll find a little cairn there-when they get up!' His discovery of the great but invisible pinnacle of the Gioch, from detecting an unusual shaped shadow on a photograph of the face, is the most often quoted example of good reconnaissance work in our island climbing.

It was only another of his contradictions that, although something of a recluse, he was devoted to good company, and talked wittily and picturesquely. A Lucullan dinner in his rooms, with maybe Hugh Stutfield, the medieval scholar W. P. Ker, the painter Colin Philip, Younghusband, Bruce, or his closest friend Slingsby, would be memorable for the range of the discussion, over problems of exploration, of philosophy, of art or of literature, with perhaps short shows of his beautiful slides to bring some new region into the talk. He was less interested in human beings than in ideas and form and colour, and he was not easily approachable except upon the ground of a common interest. His friends were from among the few with whom he had pursued one or more of these interests actively, and especially his far-flung climbing.

To younger men, with the same enthusiasms, he was generous and helpful; he started Dr. Kellas on his revolutionary method of Himalayan exploration, and in a meeting at our house in Cambridge between him and Gino Watkins, he appreciated so quickly that young Elizabethan's exceptional quality, that he promised him at once on behalf of the Royal Geographical Society the first financial support Gino's Arctic expeditions received. When he became interested in a man, his penetrating eyes flashed suddenly into an observant personal sympathy; when he was not, he was incapable of the pretence, even, of awareness of him.

The leader of the first German Nanga Parbat expedition-a very nice fellow-asked me to introduce him to Collie, the survivor of the first explorers. Between, however, the blond and bluff young modernist, efficient and hustling, with his card neatly printed as 'Leader of the Nanga Parbat Expedition', and the supersensitive 'Wandering Scholar-artist' out- of the Middle Ages, reluctantly materializing as a deep-grooved, yellow-ivory profile against dusty bronze and brocades, with something of a werewolf lurking in his quizzical half-smile, the gap, of time and temperament, proved unbridgeable ; when we left, Collie was still discoursing remotely and to space about, I think, the optical miracle represented by the first character of the Chinese alphabet.

The last glimpse we have of him is, however, once again entirely sympathetic. With the coming of the war, he retired finally into Skye, and from the world. And then, in that remarkable book, The Last Enemy, we find Richard Hillary, the heroic young airman who was killed later, almost at the time of Collie's death, describing how he and a colleague spent a leave at Sligachan, and made trial of the alternative dangers of crags. 'We were alone in the inn,' he writes, 'save for one old man who had returned there to die. His hair was white but his face and bearing were still those of a mountaineer, though he must have been a great age. He never spoke, but appeared regularly at meals, to take his place at a table tight-pressed against the window, alone with his wine and his memories. We thought him rather fine.' There follows the story of a fantastic rock scramble and escape; and then, 'Over dinner we told the landlord of our novel descent. His sole comment was "Humph", but the old man at the window turned and smiled at us. I think he approved.' Norman Collie, I feel sure, would have liked that, for his own last appearance: to be unnamed himself, but turning at the sound of a mountain adventure, smiling over its rash absurdity, and flashing a silent approval at the close to the younger adventurer.

Most of us, as the years pass, find our once exclusive devotion to mountains becomes divided, at least, as between them and other and more human ties. Of all the wholehearted mountaineers I have known, Collie alone remained to the end wholly and passionately absorbed in the mountain world. His old age and death may seem to us to have been, in the result, solitary. But no man was better qualified by his talents to judge between the values that life offers. He lived a very long life consistently for, and among, the things that he found the most lovely; and he died surrounded by the unageing beauty of his principal devotion.

G. Winthrop Young.

SIR FRANCIS EDWARD YOUNGHUSBAND

1863-1942

[By courtesy of the Alpine Journal.']

Francis Younghusband first went to India as a young officer of the King's Dragoon Guards and almost from the day of his arrival there he was fired with the love of travel and exploration.

From 1886 onwards he was almost continuously on the move and he covered in his journeys immense tracts of Central and Eastern Asia, some of them previously unexplored. The first of these journeys was the expedition into Manchuria with Sir Evan James, an account of which will be found in James's book The Long White Mountain. Then, starting from Peking, he traversed the Gobi Desert, and found his way into India over the Mustagh pass which had never before been crossed by any European. The descent from the summit of the pass on the southern side was a really formidable mountaineering feat, especially for a small untrained party unprovided with ice- axes, proper ropes, or even boots. It seems little short of a miracle that they succeeded in getting down safely. These experiences are described by Younghusband in his book The Heart of a Continent, a classic of Asiatic travel.

Further journeys in the Pamirs and all that complex maze of mountains 'where three Empires meet' followed in the years 1888-91, and he also served in Chitral as an officer of the Foreign and Political Department of the Government of India to which he had now been transferred. He acted, too, as a special correspondent of The Times at the relief of Chitral, and in the Transvaal and Rhodesia in 1896-7. An account of these latter experiences will be found in his book South Africa of Today, published in 1898.

The next important step in his career was his appointment as British Commissioner to the Tibet Mission in 1903. It was here that I first met him, and I served under him as secretary and interpreter to the-Mission for the next sixteen months. He proved himself to be an ideal leader for such a mission. In the first place he was physically strong and hardy-a very necessary qualification for the experiences which lay before us. He seemed impervious to fatigue or cold and was unaffected by altitude, and he was extremely simple in his wants-quite indifferent, in fact, to those creature comforts to which most ordinary mortals attach importance. Then, too, it was invaluable to have a traveller of his experience at the head of the Mission. Our main difficulties throughout were geographical and climatic, and might at times have appeared insuperable to anyone less accustomed to Asiatic and Himalayan conditions. This, as I know from experience, stood us in good stead both when planning the advance of the Mission and during its actual progress. And, naturally, on the diplomatic side, his knowledge of the Chinese and of Asiatics generally was of the greatest value in our negotiations with the Tibetans and our relations with the Chinese Amban at Lhasa. There were innumerable pitfalls in which a less skilful negotiator might have been caught.

(By courtesy of the Alpine Journal )   Sir Francis Edward Tounghusband, 1863-1942

(By courtesy of the Alpine Journal ) Sir Francis Edward Tounghusband, 1863-1942



P.R. Oliver, 1909-1945

P.R. Oliver, 1909-1945



He looked the part, too. He was sturdy and strongly built with - aquiline features and glance, and heavy moustache and eyebrows! He was quiet in manner and sparing of speech, and quite imperturbable in circumstances of either physical danger or diplomatic crisis, I have been by his side on several such occasions, and he was always a tower of strength and radiated courage and confidence. And, what was especially refreshing, he never lost his sense of humour and could see the comic side of the most serious situations.

Underneath all this passive exterior and serenity of demeanour lay deep spiritual convictions and a philosophy based on a lifetime of thought and reading; and it was this, I think, which gave him that essential equanimity which was with him so entirely genuine and which cannot be simulated. His philosophy is outlined in several of his books written in later years after his retirement, and it found expression also in the founding and furthering of the Congress of World Faiths, whereby he sought to bring together the followers of all religions and to find some spiritual common denominator acceptable to all mankind, irrespective of creed or dogma.

He was, in fact, that rare combination of philosopher and man of action. He was a great Englishman, honourable, sincere, and courageous, and his name will live both for what he did and for what he was.

Frederick O'Connor.

I am asked to add an impression of Younghusband as he appeared in his younger days of active exploration, which has remained with me more clearly than recollections of our talks in much later years, of a more serious character. As a returning 'Indian' child he had been entrusted to my mother by his father, General Younghusband, C.S.I., who had been one of her father-in-law, Sir Henry Lawrence's 'young men', and spent some school holidays in her house. Later, he returned to visit us at Formosa, fresh from his first great journeys. And I was set, as a small boy, to entertain him by rowing behind him as bow oar from Cookham to Windsor and back, and showing him where to bathe. He was burned brick red, face and head and neck, with a general fiery effect of thick eyebrows and short hair; immensely sturdy with powerful chest and rocklike shoulders. In those days of river flannels, he stuck to his grey tweeds, and did not lay aside even a coat for the heat. All a long day he rowed in front of me, untiring, unrelenting, taciturn, with a strong digging, fisherman's stroke. From time to time respectful questions brought terse but picturesque answers, jerked over his shoulder. In this way I heard of the China to India journey, of the cutting sand-winds, and of the famous crossing of the Mustagh pass, where he had only a meat axe to cut steps with; and cut them for hours in the ice for the yak's 'feet. I knew nothing of ice or snow passes in those days, and pictured an iceberg, down which he cut the steps, without dismounting, for all four feet of the yak separately; which it will be agreed was unforgettable, if bewildering. As we rowed upstream again, came the anecdote, staccato humour and unsmiling as before, of the elderly English lady traveller whose path he had crossed in the Pamirs. She had been alone for many months; she was so frail that a frame supported her in the saddle, and she was so nervous that, though the camps coincided for but a single night, she fixed an alarm bell to her tent-top and rang up twice in the small hours, in panic that her servants were about to murder her. He never relaxed, in energy or imperturbability, during the long, sunny, river day; and I was left doubtful whether the hero had really been 'entertained'. But he said once, between headers at Odney Weir, that it was a good change, and he sent marked copies of his Lectures to the Royal Geographical Society, as a reminder of our journey together.


The 'meat axe' proved to, be a pickaxe, and there were no yaks on that part of his journey. But those who read the story will agree that the feat of getting the party across the pass, and the resource and nerve he displayed on this his first acquaintance with glaciers, were prodigious.

G. Winthrop Young.

The passing of Sir Francis Younghusband leaves a gap in the lives of all interested in Himalayan travel, which it will be impossible to fill. Few of us have failed to draw inspiration from his early work or to benefit from his counsel. I can remember the deep impression which The Heart of a Continent made on me in 1899 when I read it at the age of twelve, how I longed then to see for myself the country he so grandly described, and how I begged my parents to find out how best I could train to go there. It was not for many years that I fulfilled my early ambition in its entirety.

Sir Francis was the inspiration of early Mount Everest expeditions, of men like Mallory and Norton. Generations of Himalayan travellers have consulted him before setting out, have carried his books in their baggage to read in the hills, have turned to him when they came back. He was one of the first whose advice we sought when the Himalayan Club was founded. All his experience was at our disposal : he was gentle, generous, wise and thorough.

Kenneth Mason.

SIR AUREL STEIN, K.C.I.E.

1862-1943

[By courtesy of the Alpine Journal.]

Aurel Stein, who died in Kabul on 26th October 1943, was the greatest Central Asian traveller of his generation. His pre-eminence was due to his scholarship, both in languages living and dead, and in archaeology and historical research. He was a resolute explorer of unknown mountain regions, a sound geographer and a good map maker.

Born at Budapest, he studied oriental languages and antiquities at the Universities of Vienna and Tubingen; but he told the writer of this notice he had to come to Oxford to complete his studies. He became a naturalized British subject, joined the Indian Educational Department, was appointed Principal of the Oriental College of Lahore and Registrar of the Punjab University in 1888 and in 1899 of the Calcutta Madrasa. But during these years he also carried out archaeological investigations in Kashmir and on the Afghan frontier. His work was of so pre-eminent a nature, especially his researches on the influence of Alexander's Greek colonies and its effect on native Buddhist art, that in 1910 he was transferred to the Archaeological Survey of India.

Here his great talents found a wider scope. He was already a Sanskrit scholar. He was one of the first to translate Kharosthi, a dead language. But his colloquial knowledge of the many living languages of the Indian borderlands and of Central Asia was unique and gave him admission to districts closed to other Europeans. Thus he was the first to follow the route of Alexander's invasion through parts of Bajaur, Swat and the upper Indus Republics', including Darel, his papers in the Geographical and Archaeological Journals being for certain districts still our only source of information.

He first visited Chinese Turkestan in 1900-1, returning for a longer journey in 1906-8. In the course of these journeys he explored that part of the Kuen Luen which had been touched by W. H. Johnson in 1865,1 covering much new ground in arduous conditions. It was in the Kuen Luen that he got badly frostbitten, but his resolute courage-and he suffered acute pain during months of hard travel-never permitted this disability to abate his activities. Later journeys took him to Kansu, where he followed out the ancient 'Silk Route' from China to the west. In 1913-16 he carried out geographical and archaeological explorations in Western Central Asia and Persia, and in South Persia again in 1932-3. In 1926-8 he made a most valuable foray into Upper Swat, Baluchistan and Makran. In 1938-9 he travelled through Iraq and Transjordan, unravelling problems of Sassanian and Imperial Roman topography.

1 A. J., vol. xxiv, p. 133; vol. xxxiv, p. 54.

He was the author of many books, besides innumerable papers on Sanskrit and other oriental languages, archaeology and geography. His best known works are Serindia (5 vols.); Sand-buried Cities of Khotan; Ruins of Desert Cathay; Innermost Asia (4 vols.); The Thousand Buddhas; his last (1940) on Old Routes of Western Iran.

He was awarded the Gold Medal of the R.G.S. in 1909: also the Gold Medals of the Geographical Societies of France and Sweden; the Petrie Medal and the Gold Medal of the Royal Asiatic Society and the Society of Antiquaries. He had honorary degrees from Oxford, Cambridge and St. Andrews. He was created K.C.I.E. in 1912. Three years earlier he was elected an Honorary Member of the Alpine Club.

For many years he made his home in Srinagar, Kashmir, but often visited England. To meet him was always a delightful experience, for besides his personal charm, his profound scholarship enabled him to talk fascinatingly on any aspect of oriental civilization. His sympathetic understanding of oriental races made him welcome from Baghdad to China. It is doubtful if any other has ever been so supremely qualified as a traveller.

T. G. Longstaff.

PETER R. OLIVER

1909-1945

[By courtesy of the Alpine Journal.]

Lieut.-Colonel Peter Oliver was killed in action near Meiktila in Burma while commanding a battalion of the 13 th Frontier Force Rifles. He was ahead of the main divisional column receiving an area for the night when he saw from tracks that some of the leading vehicles had taken a wrong fork in the road, and were heading straight for a force of the enemy that was being driven in from a flank. He immediately set off in his jeep in an attempt to round up the stray vehicles before they were cornered, and himself ran into the Japs. Together with his driver and orderly he left the jeep and engaged the enemy with his rifle. The sound of his firing warned the vehicles, and by taking a diversion they managed to escape. Having accomplished his purpose, he decided to return, but before he could regain the jeep he was shot in the neck and body by machine-gun fire and instantly killed. He was buried the following morning, to quote a letter from his Adjutant, 'facing some high hills of which he was so fond'.

Peter Oliver was born in 1909 and was elected to the Club in 1933. His qualifications included three seasons' climbing and exploration in the Himalaya, and one season without guides in the Alps. His first climbs were made with E. H. Marriott in the Kanawar Kailas group, Baspa valley; thenceforward part at least of his leaves was spent in the hills. In 1930 he visited the Dhaula Okar range above Dharmsala in the Kangra valley and recorded his experiences in vol. iii of The Himalayan Journal. These ascents, made either alone or with an unskilled orderly, involved both rock climbing and snow and ice work. Like the good mountaineer he was quickly becoming, he records how, when descending a steep snow slope overlaid with loose hail, he took the greatest care to drive his crampons into the firm substratum.

In 1931 he returned to the same district. He was now more ambitious, and with his orderly climbed one peak of 19,000 feet and three of 18,000 feet.

In 1932 while On home leave he visited Switzerland, and with M. G. Bradley and E. F. D. Campbell made a number of guideless ascents, including the Fimffingerstock (peaks 1 and 2), Sustenhorn, Wichelplankstock, Winterstock by the east ridge, and Wilerhorn, and with Campbell the Gross Hockenhorn and Balmhorn-Altels traverse. He concluded the season with ascents of the Simmelistock and Kings peak accompanied by G. R. Speaker.

He had passed his novitiate, and in 1933 with Campbell attempted Dunagiri, 23,184 feet, in the Garhwal Himalaya. Little was then known about the mountain, apart from W. W. Graham's vague account1 of his attempt in 1883, and the route selected was the west face and south-west ridge from the Tola Nala. Dunagiri was eventually climbed by the ridge, but it was reached from the east, not the west, and when in 1937 Peter and I made an attempt by the former route, being turned back a short distance from the summit by bad weather, it was evident that any attempt from the west was foredoomed to failure owing to the tremendously steep average angle and the danger from falling ice and stones. Possibly it was well, therefore, that Campbell's mountain sickness prevented a more determined attempt.

After this, Campbell had to return to England, leaving Oliver to make the second ascent of Trisul, 23,360 feet, accompanied by one porter, a climb involving some 4,000 feet of ascent on the last day, after a fresh snow fall, a great effort for a party of two.

1 A. J., vol. xi, p. 366; vol. xii, p. 40.

In 1935 he was one of a party of Everest possibles in the Alps. The most gruelling day was a traverse from the Gapanna Margherita to the Breithorn and Zermatt in soft snow under a broiling sun. Throughout this and other expeditions he proved himself thoroughly sound on all types of ground and exceptional in strength, stamina and speed. These qualities, allied to his personal qualities and Himalayan experience, especially in the handling of natives, made his inclusion in the 1936 Everest expedition a certainty. That, and the 1938 expedition, which he also accompanied, were tales of boredom and disappointment, and Peter was of the nervous, highly strung type that chafes against frustration and inaction. With many men frustration resolves itself into grievance, but it was never so with him. Whatever others might feel, however much one might hate the weather, the food, or even one's companions, it was impossible to continue to do so in his company, for pettiness, malice, unchari- tableness, gloom and negative thinking melted within his orbit like snowflakes in the sun. The Sherpas were especially sensitive to these qualities, and to his invariable capacity for disentangling right from wrong and justice from injustice-in this I have never known him at fault.

In 1937 he joined me in Garhwal for a long leave. I look back upon that summer as the happiest I ever spent on the mountains. Sensitive, active of mind and body, and at times impulsive, he had an underlying quality of serenity which one only discovered when one knew him well. With him one felt that nothing could go wrong, that defeat on a mountain, even mountaineering itself, came second to his companionship. For Peter was a natural giver of himself; one who was not so much unselfish as selfless. It was in this atmosphere that the summer passed among the flowers and snows of that glorious mountain land.

Two incidents stand out in my mind. One was on the Mana peak. This was the finest Himalayan ascent either of us had made and comparable in length, difficulty and variety with the great routes on the south side of Mont Blanc. Peter did a full share in the leading, including much cutting in steep ice accomplished with the neatness and precision of a first-rate Alpine guide. The weather was perfect, but unhappily he was not yet fully acclimatized to altitude, and a few hundred feet from the summit he decided not to go on. When, after completing the ascent, I returned to him I found him angry-the one and only occasion I saw him thus. But it was not the anger of disappointment, nor was there one grain of resentment as the result of my going on: it was a reaction from the fears he had entertained for my safety as he watched me climb the rock ridge. 6You ought not to have gone on alone,' he kept saying, T was never so anxious in my life.' I had not thought of this aspect of affairs and it made me feel very small and humble. It is my greatest regret that he was not able to crown the work he put into this ascent; it would have been his highest peak.

The other was on Dunagiri. We were struggling down the southwest ridge in the face of a gale when my feet lost all sensation. I mentioned this to Peter and he immediately insisted on a halt by a rock which partially protected us from the blast. There he made me remove my boots and for the next hour at least massaged my feet with his bare hands, thereby undoubtedly saving me from frostbite. Such thought and consideration for others were typical of the man.

Later, on Nilkanta he was at the top of his form and showed himself to be as good on really difficult rocks as he was on snow and ice. Not once during any ascent was there any symptom of unsteadiness or the semblance of a slip, though he used to tear down steep broken ground like a chamois.

For some years he was attached to the South Waziristan Scouts, a force of levies recruited to guard the North-West Frontier, in which he saw much varied service and participated in a number of skirmishes. For many years he suffered from trouble with his Achilles tendons, but this could not diminish his energy, for he climbed with his mind as much as with his body. Spare almost to the point of frailty, he used to take his tough hillmen for long cross-country route marches carried out at five miles an hour over all manner of ground, Tor the good of their souls and to teach them that they are not the only people who can walk over hills', as he used to put it. He could outlast them all.

By temperament and inclination he was an artist, and it is impossible not to feel that he missed his real vocation. His sketches of members of the 1936 Everest expedition will be found in Everest, the Unfinished Adventure. But financial considerations and commitments made it impossible for him to fulfil what I know to have been a deep- seated ambition-a personal grief about which he never complained.

His end was as he himself would have wished-helping others.

F. S. Smythe.

I first met Peter Oliver at Razmak where we were both subalterns. He was a great walker and walked from Razmak to the top of Shindar, an ascent involving a 10-mile walk and about 6,000-feet climb, in 2 hours 40 minutes. The following year he and I together did some climbing round the Kanawar Kailas in Upper Bashahr. This was, I believe, his first experience of serious climbing and we had a delightful leave there. To my great regret that was the only climbing we did together, as leave periods never again coincided. He was a delightful companion, most enthusiastic and energetic. Although we only climbed together once we have met on many other occasions, as his family and mine subsequently met.

Edward Marriott.

MICHAEL SPENDER

Squadron Leader Michael Spender was killed in an air accident in May 1945. He will be remembered by all who are interested in polar and mountain exploration. He is mourned by a wide circle of friends with a marked diversity of interests.

It was said of Spender that he was too much of an artist to be a great scientist. How far the two are incompatible I am not prepared to say. Their claims certainly conflicted in Spender's career. At the age of eight he started to learn the piano. Within a year he was so advanced that his music mistress had little further to teach him. At Gresham's School his music master, Greatorex, was so impressed with his talent that he urged him to take up music as a profession. However, having won an exhibition at Balliol, he decided instead on a scientific career. At first he did physics, then at the end of his first year he changed to engineering. In spite of this, in the remaining two years he took first class honours in engineering. But nearly all his friends at Oxford were in the musical world, and it seems that the conflict between his artistic inclinations and his chosen course of study may have been partly responsible for the restlessness which marked his university career. Research in the electrical recording of music might have offered scope for both his main talents had he not discovered, after a year of this work, a distaste for commercial methods. He was to find a full measure of satisfaction in scientific exploration.

Spender's first appearance in this field was with J. A. Steers on the Great Barrier Reef expedition of 1928-9. There he spent a year making a very detailed survey of a typical island of the Reef, other surveys over a wide area of coral reefs and islands, and a series of accurate tidal observations. On his return from Australia he went to Switzerland to work with the Swiss Federal Survey and to study the latest methods of stereo-photogrammetric survey. He continued his studies under Professor Norlund of the Geodetic Institute in Copenhagen. In 1932 he was invited to join Captain Ejnar Mikklesen's expedition to East Greenland as surveyor. Here he developed new and ingenious methods of exploratory survey which enabled him to make an accurate survey of 120 miles of the Blosseville coast in eleven working days. He then made a fine map of a thousand square miles of Kangerdlugssuak. In 1933 he returned to East Greenland with Knud Rasmussen's expedition. By the extensive use of his short base method and photogrammetry and with the assistance of air photography he and his assistants mapped the whole of the mountainous area as far as the Ice Gap between Umivik (Lat. 65°) and Kangerdlugssuak (Lat. 68°). So good was this work that a party who travelled 100 miles inland two years later to the Watkins Mountains could find no error in the map or in the determination of heights, although the country that they passed through had never been actually visited by the surveyors.In 1935 Spender went with the Reconnaissance expedition to Mount Everest to make a stereo-photogrammetric survey of the mountain and a large area of the surrounding country. In 1937 he went with me again, this time to the Shaksgam. On both these expeditions he entered with great enthusiasm into the spirit of the light expedition, using all his ingenuity to reduce the weight of his survey equipment, denying himself tobacco and other small comforts to cut out the last ounce of unessential personal kit, carrying his full share of weight when necessary, and taking full advantage of every opportunity to widen the scope of his contribution to the work.

One of Spender's most outstanding characteristics was his penetrating interest in every detail of his immediate experience. Travelling through Tibet nothing seemed to escape his notice: the flora, the geology, the agriculture, the architecture, the local customs, every aspect of the country and the people received its share of his remarkably well-informed attention. Accompanying him on a railway journey in England one had the impression that one was taking an active part in driving the train: feeling the steepness of the gradient, gauging the weight of the load, and wondering if the engine had sufficient pressure of steam to make it. His intense interest in the detail of his environment sprang, not from a desire to acquire knowledge for its own sake, but from a strong zest for living, a flame that found fuel even in the most commonplace surroundings. This attitude of mind is supremely valuable in exploration, where it finds unusual scope both for expression and development. In the Karakoram in 1937 five months of intensive survey work, hard living and heavy physical labour left him straining to project the experience still farther into a boundless field. I have rarely seen such reluctance to return to the fleshpots.

Among his wide interests, psychology latterly held a prominent place. This was stimulated by a meeting with Jung in 1937 while the latter was making a tour of India. Later Spender travelled back to Europe on the same ship as the distinguished psychologist, and was fortunate enough to spend much of the time in his company. This contact made a profound impression on Spender. As a student of human nature, it was natural that he should take the keenest interest in sociological problems. His own vivid temperament led him to the conviction that one of the greatest evils of our time was the increasing constriction of the life of most industrial and town workers, which confined their vision to a narrowing sphere, prevented them from mastering the whole of any craft, and removed them farther and farther from reality, and thus from the fundamental basis of human contentment. It was Spender's over-riding desire to contribute in some way to the solution of this great social problem.

His critical intelligence, his habit of giving free expression to his lively imagination, his intolerance of conventional forms made him a most stimulating companion. But these very qualities, combined with a lack of tact, perhaps surprising in one so sensitive, and a quick temper, led to many serious misunderstandings with those who had not had the opportunity or had not troubled to understand his complex nature. This resulted in his making many enemies and roughened the path of many of his undertakings. Some of his acquaintance thought him selfish and over-bearing. Superficially perhaps he was both. But below this surface one found a rare gentleness, a sympathetic understanding of people and a strongly developed power of self-criticism which was constantly rounding the sharp edges of his character and tempering its defects.

There was no man in whose company I found more pleasure, or with whom I would rather have shared the deep and varied experience of an exploratory journey.

E. E. Shipton.

COLIN FLETCHER KIRKUS

1910-42

C. F. Kirkus was not a member of the Himalayan Club, but the Journal would be very incomplete without an account of him. The following notice is based on a memorial by A. W. Bridge.

Colin Kirkus's reputation rested chiefly on his cragsmanship. He started climbing in North Wales, and there to the end of his life was his happiest hunting-ground