Chris Bonington is one of the most famous mountaineers of all time.
He was born in London in 1934 and was educated at Hampstead School. After Sandhurst he joined the army and – at the same time - quickly discovered his love of mountains. He started climbing very seriously in the Alps - making the first ascent of the Central Pillar of Freney and the first British ascent of the North Face of the Eiger - before moving on to Patagonia and the Himalaya. In 1970 he organised the ground breaking expedition that made the first ascent of Annapurna’s South Face and in 1975 he was leader of the famous ascent of the South West Face of Everest. He has since explored mountains, oceans, and remote areas around the world. In 1985 he achieved a life time ambition when he reached the summit of Everest.
Chris wrote his first book - I Chose to Climb - in 1966 and has subsequently written fourteen books and is one of mountaineering’s most prolific authors. He was knighted in 1996 and has been awarded the RGS's Founder's Medal. He's Chancellor of Lancaster University and also has numerous Honorary Degrees - which as he once commented, 'Isn't bad for someone who didn't go to university!'
Chris is the longstanding Patron of Kendal Mountain Festival.