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Johan Reinhard gets Hillary Medal

Friday, November 3rd, 2017
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reinhard

This year’s Sir Edmund Hillary Mountain Legacy Medal has gone to Johan Reinhard, an Explorer-in-Residence at the National Geographic Society, and world-acclaimed explorer and anthropologist who has done important work on the Incas in Peru as well as in the sacred ‘beyul’ valleys of Tibetan Buddhism in Nepal.

The medal will be conferred to Reinhard on 11 December in Pokhara at the Mountain Festival. He is also returning to Nepal to continue his earlier research into hunter-gatherer groups.

In 2003 the Sir Edmund Hillary Mountain Legacy Medal was initiated by unanimous resolution of the Namche Conference: Parks, People and Mountain Tourism. The Hillary Medal both recognises Sir Edmund’s life-long commitment to the welfare of mountain people and their environment and also encourages the continuing emulation of his example. It is awarded ‘for remarkable service in the conservation of culture and nature in mountainous regions.

Reinhard is a Senior Fellow at The Mountain Institute. He is also the discoverer in 1995 of the Incan Ice Maiden, a frozen mummy on Peru’s Mt Ampato. In the 1980s he directed the first underwater archaeological project in Lake Titicaca. His expeditions in the Andes have led to the discovery of over a dozen Incan human sacrifices on five mountains, including three on Argentina’s Mount Llullaillaco, the world’s highest archaeological site (22,100 feet) in 1999.  His investigations have led him to present theories to explain the mystery of the Nazca Lines, the giant desert drawings, pre-Hispanic ceremonial sites built on Andean mountain summits, and the ancient ceremonial centers of Machu Picchu, Chavin, and Tiahuanaco.

He has more than 70 publications, including six books, and his research has been featured in a number of television documentaries. His work has been distinguished with several awards, including the Rolex Award for Enterprise, the Puma de Oro (Bolivia’s highest award in the field of archaeology), and the Explorers Medal of the Explorers Club, while Outside magazine selected him as one of the 25 most extraordinary explorers and the Ford Motor Company chose him as one of 12 “Heroes for the Planet.”

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