He is a world-renowned climber, innovator and inventor of mountaineering equipment, leading search and rescuer, author and adviser. Now Gencoe's Hamish MacInnes, 77, is honoured for his dedication to mountaineering with a new award.
Mr MacInnes, is the first to receive the Scottish Award for Excellence in Mountain Culture.
He is known for scaling the world's most dangerous peaks and his invention the MacInnes stretcher is used internationally.
Born in Dumfries and Galloway in 1930 and known as the 'Fox of Glencoe' in reference to his cunning as a mountaineer, he is recognised widely as the father of modern mountain rescue in Scotland. He designed the first all-metal ice axe, founded the Search and Rescue Dog Association and set up the Scottish Avalanche Information service.
All rock climbers know the name of Hamish Mc Innes. He has done just about everything - Himalayas, Alps, Scottish mountains, leading the Glencoe rescue teams on the hairiest rescues. He has saved literally saved hundreds of lives and developed unique equipment. His mountain books are very readable indeed. You've probably seen him on television.
We had a group of climbers in the cottage for a short weekend break in December. When I told them that Hamish could be spotted in Crafts and Things most mornings, just talking quietly and modestly with the locals here is the short glimpse they offered of him.
("Cubby" is David Cutherbertson, the local guide and rock climber. He was the body double for the fall in the famous Mountaineering film of a couple of years ago, "Into the Void" )
"Have bumped into Cubby a couple of times but never the god that is McInnes! Quite the character I understand, amazing to think he invented the modern ice axes we use today. Have heard some great stories about him, the best one being him tunnelling out of a huge cornice in the Cairnorms. Apparently, just as he broke through the ice a group of young scouts walked past. They stopped in amazement as this frosty figure appeared from out of the snow. He stood up, wiped the snow from his beard, pointed at one of the young fellows saying ‘’You Boy – what year is this!’’
That's Hamish, one of the nicest most modest men you can find.
ps We have just put up a new page in our website about the MacDonalds.
How did the MacDonalds become the Lords of the Isles?
Here are some other links: