Peter Hillary

Adventurer, Mountaineer, Writer & Speaker

In 2008, mountaineer Peter Hillary made a successful ascent of Mt McKinley, the highest mountain in North America, and the final in his "Seven Summits" series. He dedicated the climb to his father, Sir Edmund Hillary, who died six months before on January 11, 2008. "After the last six months of incredible memorials and farewells to my father it provided me with an opportunity to go back to where it all started: in the mountains that inspired us both. Completing the Seven Summits has been my salute to my father."

Peter Hillary reached the summit of Mt McKinley in Alaska at 4 am, June 17 after a 6 hour climb to the summit where the wind chill factor was minus 70 degrees C.

The Seven Summits are the highest peaks on each of the seven Continents, and to complete them is a goal of many top mountaineers. Hillary climbed the peaks in the following order:

1..Everest: 29,029ft Nepal/Tibet (1990, 2002); 2.Aconcagua: 22,840ft Argentina, South America (1991); 3.Vinson Massif: 16,067 Ellsworth Range, Antarctica (1992); 4.Carstenz Pyramid: 16,023 Indonesia, Oceania (1995); 5.Kilimanjaro: 19,339 Tanzania, Africa (2005); 6.Elbrus: 18,481 Russia, Europe (2006); 7.Mt McKinley: 20,320 Alaska, North America (2008).

In addition, Peter's incredible experiences also include:

  • Traveling to the North Pole with Sir Edmund and astronaut Neil Armstrong: the first man on the moon and the first man to summit the world's highest mountain.
  • The first high-altitude traverse of the Himalayan Range: a 5000 kilometer route from Sikkim through Nepal and India to Pakistan at an average altitude of over 4,000 metres, which Peter undertook with fellow mountaineers Graeme Dingle and Chewang Tashi.
  • A remarkable journey with his father jetboating up the sacred Ganges river from the Bay of Bengal to high in the Himalayas, watched by hundreds of thousands of enthralled Indians.
  • Shark frenzies in the Coral Sea: feeding and filming sharks with Ron and Valerie Taylor in North Queensland.
  • Surviving the K2 disaster: Eight climbers were headed for the summit of this, one of the world's most treacherous mountains. Peter turned away 400m from the summit just in time to retreat as a horrifying storm hit the mountain, taking the lives of all seven of his colleagues. 

Peter Hillary is articulate, humorous and relaxed. He has made countless radio and television appearances, been involved in television documentaries, authored four mountaineering books and one children's book; written magazine articles, worked on outdoor equipment, designed and marketed and is an adventure travel operator. Peter holds a commercial pilot's licence for fixed wing aircraft.

Peter's extensive mountaineering experience includes more than 30 alpine expeditions in the Himalaya, the Karakoram, New Zealand's Southern Alps, the Andes, Antarctica and North America. He has led and been part of climbing teams on some of the world's highest peaks, including Everest, K2, Makalu, Lhotse, Aconcagua and Vinson.

Peter has been active in the Himalayan Trust, an organisation founded by his father to assist the local people of the Mount Everest region where they have built and run 42 schools, hospitals and medical clinics. Since 1992, Peter has taken a total of 800 teenagers to assist with construction and maintenance on some of the Himalayan Trust hospitals and schools and other community facilities.

Peter Hillary talks about:

  • Climb Your Own Everest Peter's 10 steps to the summit of the world including: Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained; Fear; Passion; and Resist the Flock Factor,
  • To the Ends of the EarthThe Dream, the Drive and the Dedication to the Goal. A 15 year quest that took Peter to the North Pole, the South Pole and the summit of Mt Everest.
  • K2: Survive ... And Thrive - The story of those who died - and those who survived - on the world's most savage mountain, K2. Because surviving is the name of the game.

Client testimonials

Peter did an excellent job. His adventures and the obstacles he encountered were related perfectly to those of his audience.

AMP Society

Peter's talk was fascinating, covering adventures that are outside the wildest dreams of most of us. The slides were magnificent and the stories he told were really entertaining. A number of dealers I spoke to were totally enthralled by Peter and his achievements.

Bridgestone Tyres

A special person. Down to earth, sensible, stimulating, humble, intelligent, honest, very presentable. Participated in the whole evening.

Geelong Grammar

The audience thoroughly enjoyed Peter’s presentation, some event commented that is was the best presentation of the day. He received the highest ranking of all speakers.

Insurance Commission of WA

Peter exceeded our expectations in every way and more

Thorn Australia