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  Mallory and Irvine The Final Chapter:

Maj. R. W. G. Hingston


Major Richard William George Hingston was not a mountaineer by profession but rather a doctor and naturalist who served as the Medical Officer for the 1924 Third British Expedition to Everest. Despite his lack of official climbing skills Hingston was able to come to the aid of Norton at Camp IV when Norton was struck by snow blindness.

 

Hingston entered the Indian Medical Service in 1910 and served in France, Africa and the Middle East during World War I. In 1920 he published a book detailing his 1914 & 1916 travels in the Himalayan valley of Hazara, in what is now Pakistan, entitled “A Naturalist in Himalaya.” As a naturalist he collected 10,000 animal samples (insects for the largest part), and 500 plant specimens during the 1924 expedition. Among his finds were a species of Black Attid spiders he discovered living at 22,000 feet, the highest known habitat for any animal.

 

Hingston retired in 1927 though he made further expeditions to Greenland, Africa and Guyana. He continued to write extensively, including “Physiological Difficulties in the Ascent of Mount Everest,” published in The Alpine Journal (1925), and a contribution to Norton’s 1924 book “The Fight for Everest.”  Hingston passed away in 1966.

 

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