Sir Edmund Hillary's kit bag

Tuesday 04 December 2018

Canterbury Museum has acquired a canvas kit bag used by Sir Edmund Hillary when he and Tenzing Norgay became the first people to summit Mt Everest.

Kit bag

The kit bag was used by Sir Edmund Hillary during the 1953 British Mount Everest Expedition

The large duffel-style bag, which is 65 cm wide and 95 cm long when flat, carried equipment Hillary used on the 1953 British Mount Everest expedition.

Hillary wrote a list of gear on the outside of the bag which reads:

"Assault March, Not to be issued personally, 10 air mattresses, 4 sleeping bags 20 below, 1 sleeping bag Mummy, 2 pairs down gloves, 6 pairs leather fingered gloves, 6 pairs silk gloves, Hillary, Auckland New Zealand, clothing, Air Mail".

The bag was found in a caravan once owned by Hillary, and was then sold to the vendor who put it up for auction.

In 2003, Hillary verified that he had used the bag on the 1953 expedition.

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