From Adversity To Triumph: A Gurkha Veteran's Historic Everest Summit

By Ethan Cole on
 July 10, 2023

The remarkable ascent of Mount Everest by former Gurkha, Hari Budha Magar, marked a historic achievement in overcoming physical adversity. Magar, a native of Nepal, served in various roles within the British Army until 2010, when he tragically lost both legs above the knee while deployed in Afghanistan.

Despite this profound loss, he remarkably learned to walk again using prosthetic limbs and successfully challenged discriminatory bans on double amputees climbing Mount Everest. With the assistance of four Sherpa climbers and specialized prosthetics, Magar reached the summit on May 19, 2023.

This landmark accomplishment, the first of its kind, embodies triumph over adversity and serves as an inspiring testament to the power of human resilience and determination. It furthermore underscores the imperative of inclusivity and equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities.

The journey of this extraordinary individual from a humble Nepalese cowshed to the 'roof of the world' is an inspiration for all.

Hari Budha Magar's Journey

Overcoming significant adversity, Hari Budha Magar, a Gurkha veteran and the first double above-knee amputee to summit Mount Everest, demonstrated immense resilience and determination in his journey from a cowshed in Nepal to the world's highest peak.

Born in Nepal, Magar battled regular altitude sickness early in life. At the age of 19, he joined the British Army where he served with the Royal Gurkha Rifles. His military career, however, was interrupted in 2010 when he lost both legs in Afghanistan. The incident led to a month in hospital and a year of learning to walk with prosthetics.

Despite the initial shame and public avoidance, Magar found solace in sports and adventure activities, becoming the first disabled person to ski in Nepal and kayak around the Isle of Wight.

Overcoming Physical Challenges

Despite the physical challenges posed by his double amputation, Hari Budha Magar successfully pursued climbing and adventure sports, highlighting the strength and determination of individuals with disabilities.

Magar's initial shame at being seen in public due to his disabilities was replaced by resilience and a drive to break barriers. His specially designed prosthetic legs, a creation of Krishna Thapa, facilitated his mountaineering pursuits.

Magar's summit of Everest in 2023 is a remarkable achievement that underlines the importance of inclusivity and the removal of discriminatory barriers for those with physical disabilities. The accomplishment is symbolic of the human spirit's ability to overcome adversity.

This historical feat serves as a beacon of inspiration for individuals facing physical challenges, exemplifying the power of perseverance.

Inspiring and Historic Achievement

Hari Budha Magar's successful ascent, as a double above-knee amputee, represents a milestone in mountaineering and serves as a potent symbol of resilience and determination, encouraging others facing similar physical challenges.

The achievement, completed using specialized prosthetic legs, showcases the possibilities for individuals with disabilities when barriers are removed, emphasizing the significance of inclusivity in all endeavors.

The historic event has been widely recognized as a testament to the power of the human spirit and the ability to overcome adversity. Magar's journey, from a humble cowshed in Nepal to the highest peak in the world, is a story of triumph that continues to inspire the global community.

Furthermore, this monumental achievement serves as a source of pride for Nepal and the Gurkha community.


The historic summit of Mount Everest by Hari Budha Magar, a Gurkha veteran and double amputee, stands as a testament to the resilience of the human spirit.

It emphasizes the need for inclusivity and serves as an inspirational beacon for individuals with disabilities.

This achievement, from humble beginnings to overcoming discriminatory barriers, underscores the potential inherent in every individual to conquer immense challenges, thereby contributing to a more inclusive and equitable world.

Frequently Asked Questions

How has Hari Budha Magar's achievement affected policies or attitudes towards disabled climbers in Nepal and globally?

Hari Budha Magar's successful summit of Everest as a double amputee has significantly impacted attitudes towards disabled climbers, fostering inclusivity and challenging discriminatory policies both within Nepal and on a global scale.

What was the most challenging part of the climb for Hari Budha Magar and how did he overcome it?

Hari Budha Magar's most significant challenge was coping with the physical limitations of being a double above-knee amputee. Overcoming this involved mastering the use of specialized short prosthetic legs and relying on teamwork with Sherpas.

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