Mountaineer Grant all about the vision
If you wander to the farthest corner of Queenstown Gardens, you’ll happen upon a sculpture not just beautiful, but with real significance.
A stoic, metallic hand protrudes from the earth clasping an ice pick in show of strength.
It’s an ode to legendry former Queenstown mountaineer Bruce Grant, 31, who died on descent from K2 in Pakistan in 1995.
Other members of that ill-fated group, including Peter Hillary, elected to turn back with the possibility of nasty weather, but Grant ploughed on. He reached the summit of arguably the most challenging climb in the world but was caught in the weather on the way down. Grant died. His body has not been recovered.
The Bruce Grant Memorial Trust was set up in his honour and played a part in erecting the memorial. It encourages the youth of Queenstown to achieve their goals and aspirations through annual grants. Since 1995 more than $400,000 has been allocated.
Trust chairman Craig Ferguson says the sculpture was something trustees felt ‘‘epitomised Bruce’’.
‘‘The ice was what he was all about.’’
It was created by renowned Glenorchy artist and Grant’s brother-in-law Dan Kelly.
The memorial plaque reads: ‘‘You achieved your life vision to stand on the summit of K2. Succumbed to the wrath of nature on descent.’’
On August 13, 2015, the trust celebrated Grant’s life on the 20th anniversary of his death.
The Bruce Grant memorial in the Queenstown Gardens.