The Gurkhas are renowned for their bravery. As one former Chief of the Indian Army put it, ‘if a man says he is not afraid of dying, he is either lying or he is a Gurkha’. This kind of fortitude was put to the test during their first Everest expedition.
The trip was designed as a celebration of 200 years of service, but as the sixteen serving Gurkha soldiers began their ascent, an earthquake hit Nepal. Large parts of the country were completely destroyed and an avalanche swept through base camp, devastating everything in its wake. Most of the team were stranded further up the mountain, meaning evacuation by helicopter was their only option for survival. The team were forced to spend several days on the mountain, coordinating the rescue of 120 other climbers. Much of this time was spent in fear that their Captain, still at base camp, had died. The Captain survived, and many of the team remained in Nepal to assist with the relief effort.
Undaunted, the Gurkhas decided to give their Everest expedition another try. They wanted an identity that would symbolize the courage that all of them share. We crafted a logo which put the Gurkha’s symbol of the crossed Khukuri knives pride of place, with their negative space forming the snowy Everest peak. A traditional emblem housed in a clean, modern frame.
We’re proud to say that this month, the Gurkhas reached the summit – and a flag with our logo on it was placed at the highest point in the world. A mark of bravery, and a message that at two-hundred years old, the Gurkhas are still going strong.