Hari is a record breaking mountaineer and adventurer. He is the first ever double above-knee amputee (DAK) to summit Mt. Everest 8,849m.
1st (DAK) to climb Mera Peak 6,476m
1st (DAK) to climb Ben Nevis with Genium X3s (prosthetic legs)
1st (DAK) to trek to Everest Base Camp with Genium X3s (prosthetic legs)
1st (DAK) to climb Mt Toubkal with Genium X3s (prosthetic legs)
1st (DAK) to climb Chulu Far East 6,058m
One of 1st (DAK) to climb Mont Blanc 4,810m with prosthetic legs
Working as a former Corporal in the British Army’s legendary Gurkha regiment, Hari lost both of his legs in Afghanistan following an IED explosion in 2010. Not wanting disability to stop him, or others conquering dreams, he has been continually working to positively transform the way people with a disability are perceived, and how they perceive themselves.
In 2018, he joined forces with other climbers and disability organisations, to successfully overturn a ban on disabled climbers climbing Everest, at the Supreme Court in Nepal.
After struggling to come to terms with losing his legs, he has made it his mission to inspire and change perceptions with regards to disability globally. Around 12-15% of the world’s population have some kind of disability. That’s nearly 1 billion people worldwide. In summiting Everest he hopes to inspire other people facing similar circumstances to believe anything is possible with the right mindset.
Hari seizes the opportunity to blaze new trails for people with disabilities. He has kayaked around the Isle of Wight, completed multiple skydives, paraglided and bungee jumped.
Mont Blanc, Kilimanjaro and his highest to date, the 6,476m Mera Peak in Nepal, are among the peaks he has climbed.
His story in detail
Covering his early years, military career, injury, recovery and mindset.
As a farming family in Nepal, every two months they would move cattle and this is how he came to be born in a cowshed, in the foothills of the Himalayas, about 2,700m above sea level.
Where he grew up, he could see the mountains of Dhaulagiri and Sisne and found the story of climbing Everest fascinating, but knew very little of how the feat was achieved. All he saw were the black and white pictures of Sir Edmund Hilary and Tenzing Norgay. He was resilient as a child. He had to cook for himself and was forced to marry, aged 11. He walked barefoot to school across the hills and suffered terrible had headaches, which he now realises was altitude sickness. He grew up through the brutal civil war where most of those his age went to fight for the rebels, but he was fortunate enough to join the Gurkhas. MILITARY CAREER Hari joined the British Army at the age of 19 and served with the Royal Gurkha Rifles for 15 years. During his service he saw some of the harshest environments in the world, along with some of the most beautiful. The Gurkhas are manned by Nepali soldiers & officers, and British officers, it is this blend of cultures that makes the RGR unique. Gurkhas are known for their professionalism, fighting prowess, humour and humility. They have been an integral part of the British Army for over 200 years. “If a man says he is not afraid of dying, he is either lying or he is a Gurkha.” Former Indian Army Chief of Staff Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw INJURY While on patrol in Afghanistan in 2010, Hari stepped on an improvised explosive device (IED) and his life changed in a split second. He lost both of his legs above the knee, and sustained multiple other injuries. Hari’s first thought after the explosion was the safety of his men, his second thought was that he had somehow let them down and failed his mission. As a soldier, Hari was prepared to face death, but he had never considered the possibility that he would sustain life-changing injuries and live to tell the tale. “I can remember everything about the day I lost my legs. We were on patrol with two aims: to familiarise ourselves with a new area and survey and repair a well, so the locals could get water. It was mid-afternoon on a very hot, sunny day and we were told it was safe. I was wearing 15kg of body armour, radio, water, rations, first aid kit, ammunition, and a spare weapon by my side. I remember the local children asking us for sweets and stopping to give them some. “Suddenly a loud bang, and the first thing was a ringing in my right ear. My body armour came up towards my face, my right arm was injured and I couldn’t move it. I was looking for a tourniquet to stem the blood and I called for one of my colleagues to help sort me out. My right leg wasn’t there, my left was but dangling as skin and bone. “Was I going to survive? I didn’t know. As the guys patched me up, I heard them say a helicopter was inbound in 10mins, so that meant yes, I was going to survive. “I was second in command to a young officer who I had trained alongside for six months before deploying to Afghanistan. I was the most senior Gurkha, and the squad relied on me to make decisions. When I spoke, they listened. Some of the other junior NCOs were very young and my aim was for them to do the six-month tour, stay safe, and return home. But, after the explosion I couldn’t see that through. When I woke I was filled with shame and I remember saying to the commanding officer - I’m sorry sir. When Hari woke in the hospital bed, he felt desolate and hopeless. He questioned what kind of life he would be able to lead in the future, and whether it would even be worth living. His mind full of negative thoughts. “In the days after the injury, I lacked the courage to lift the bed covers to look at my legs. My mind raced with questions - how would I support my family? Will I be in a wheelchair for the rest of my life? Will my wife leave me? “Back in the UK I started drinking a lot and mixing it with my medication. My brain became foggy. I couldn’t concentrate and my hands shook when I wasn’t drinking. Had I carried on that way, I wouldn’t be here today and I knew that if I left my family on their own they would suffer.” Hari was ashamed to be seen in public, because he had grown up in a society where many Nepalese believed that those with disabilities had sinned in a former life and the disability was a form of punishment or karma. “After my injuries, initially I completely lost confidence. In Nepal, disability was viewed, by most people, as if you’d done something wrong in your previous life and now had the burden of the Earth to carry. Instead of helping people with disabilities, they hide them in a corner. I remember waiting in Kathmandu and a lady said: ‘You’ve got fake legs. Why don’t you wear trousers, you’d look normal?’ and I replied: ‘This is normal to me.” RECOVERY Hari spent a month in hospital and worked tirelessly over 12 months learning to walk again on his prosthetic legs. With time and determination, Hari took control, regained his self-esteem, and challenged himself to exceed the limitations put on ‘disabled’ people by society. “Everybody in life has ups and downs, and when they’re low, that’s the time they need help: family, charity, friends, community. It’s make or break. I was privileged to serve in the army and had good prosthetic legs. I was treated by the charity Combat Stress for six weeks. Slowly I started doing sports. It was through golf and the On Course Foundation that I started to get my confidence back and I began to see what I could do physically.” Since his injury, Hari has battled to rediscover his confidence through an array of sports and adventures. He has done everything from skydiving to kayaking, cycling to skiing, and golf to climbing. Hari was the first ever disabled person to ski in Nepal, and was one of the first double above-knee (DAK) amputees to kayak around the Isle of Wight. He holds the world record for being the first ever DAK to summit a mountain over 6,000m. During his rehabilitation, Hari was supported by the following charities and organisations: Gurkha Welfare Trust, On Course Foundation, Blesma, Combat Stress, Pilgrim Bandits, Style for Soldiers, Royal British Legion, Combat Stress, the NHS, Costello Prosthetics. POA Orlando and Ottobok. MINDSET Hari did not accept the discriminatory beliefs of so many towards disability, so he decided to challenge them, and to change them. Since then, he has dedicated his life to positively transform the way people with a disability are perceived, and how they perceive themselves. “We should no longer be seen as being poor, miserable and living off benefits. We can be successful and live a happy and meaningful life. But changing that perception will be a bigger battle than climbing Everest.” Throughout his life, Hari wanted to climb Everest, but there was always something stopping him, whether it be lack of money, time, or something else. In losing his legs above the knee it galvanised Hari and gave him extra motivation to accomplish this superhuman feat. However, in 2017, Nepal banned solo, blind, and double amputee climbers from climbing Mount Everest. This was a huge blow to Hari who was planning his big ascent. Called out the new regulations as discriminatory, Hari joined forces with other climbers and disability organisations and successfully overturned the ban at the Supreme Court in Nepal in 2018. Hari hopes his Everest expedition will raise awareness of disabilities around the world, honour fallen comrades who didn’t return home, make those who saved his life proud, and inspire others to chase their dreams. He is determined to show what resilience, human endeavour, courage, and the power of a positive mindset can achieve; he will prove that anything is possible. On his push to the summit, Hari carried all amputees, people with disabilities, and veterans with him, along with their families and loved ones. “This unlikely climb will be for all of us. For everyone facing adversity or struggling to fight their fears, anyone that needs the motivation and inspiration to move forward in their life. Anyone that wants to conquer their dreams.”
1979 Born in a cowshed in Nepal. Forced into an arranged marriage, aged 11
1999 Joins the Royal Gurkha Rifles at 19. One of 230 successful applicants, over 10,000 applied. Serves for 15 years across five continents. Roles include Combat Medic, Sniper, and Covert Surveillance
2006 Re-marries for love to Urmila Budha Magar
2010 Loses both legs to an IED when on patrol in Afghanistan
2014 Took up golf through the On Course Foundation
2017 Becomes first double above-knee amputee to summit a mountain higher than 6,000m – Mera Peak (6476m) in Nepal
2018 Heads to the Supreme Court to successfully overturn a ban on people with a disability climbing Everest
2023 Successfully summited Mount Everest
Around 15% of the world’s population have some kind of disability.
"Having a disability does not have to be life limiting, whatever is thrown at you, you can live life to the full. But changing this perception will be a bigger battle than climbing Everest.”
Hari Budha Magar
HELP HARI GIVEBACK
Hari is raising £884,900 (the height of Everest plus two 00's) for 5 amazing charities that helped him through his rehabilitation. No donation is too big, or too small.
If you would like to sponsor Hari on his epic journey
Thank you for your support on this project, without your help it would not be possible.