Mountaineer of the Year

Originally known as the "CMC-Macpac Mountaineer of the Year" (as Macpac sponsored it for many years), the award was established to recognise significant contributions to the development of mountaineering in New Zealand and overseas in the preceding year or two.  It was also, of course, a good excuse to get together and hear a talk from the recipient(s), at the end of which they were traditionally awarded a large framed colour print and, later, a handsome trophy to keep on their mantelpiece for a year.  While the idea of acknowledging someone as somehow deserving special recognition does not usually sit well in the mountaineering world, Dave Fearnley (recipient in 1991) put things in perspective with his observation that "being Mountaineer of the Year in New Zealand is a little bit like being Rugby Player of the Year in Bangladesh". Along the same lines, John Entwisle (recipient in 1995) made the pertinent comment that the previous recipient was A Whimp, and that the only reason he (John) had been selected was that it wouldn't cost the Club anything for his talk.  So the emphasis remains on having a good time in the company of one of the many people who has done something pretty impressive recently. And on the very rare occasions that someone has steadfastly refused the nomination, we have not been short of alternatives.

Times change and while some of the more obvious features of the award have changed with them (no more sponsor - now there's an opportunity for someone seeking great publicity, introduction of a trophy, some years we just never got around to it - but not for lack of suitable recipients), the essentials have stayed the same. There may or may not be a call for nominations, following which the Club committee gets together in a secluded location (St Winifred's Hut), and when white smoke can be seen coming from the chimney the world knows that it's getting cold and they still haven't decided who will get it. 

So please honour the following for being amongst the many who have made significant contributions to mountaineering in New Zealand and around the world:

 Year Recipient Year Recipient
 1987 Rob Hall 2000 Dave Crofts and Bryan Moore
 1988  Nick Craddock 2001 Colin Monteath
 1989 Gary Ball 2002 Karen McNeill
 1990 Erica Beuzenberg 2003 Dave Vass
 1991 Dave Fearnley 2004 Eric Saggers
 1992 Matt Evrard 2005 Jo Kippax and Sean Waters
 1993 Gottlieb Braun-Elwert 2006 Jonathan Clearwater
 1994 Athol Whimp 2007 Paul Rogers
 1995 John Entwisle 2009 Paul Knott
 1996 Phil Penny and Al Uren 2010 Graham Zimmerman
 1997 Guy Cotter 2012 Jamie Vinton-Boot
 1998 Phil Suisted and Kynan Bazley 2014 Guy McKinnon
 1999 Pat Deavoll 2016 

About the trophy

The trophy was purchased with money left to the Club by Dave McLeod. It was carved by Gary Arthurs, and depicts a rock face with piton, carabiner and a knotted rope.  The first person to receive the trophy was Colin Monteith in 2001.