/ Norrie Muir RIP
Very sad news.
Norrie Muir has passed away. I have no more details other than his funeral will be at Clydebank Crematorium, Dalnottar. 15:30 hrs Thursday 25 April.
Very sad news indeed, an icon in scottish climbing - and his acerbic wit has been sadly missed on here these last few years.
That is sad news... he was quite vocal on this site a few years ago and I always enjoyed his stories, especially his solo of Centurion on The Ben...
His contributions to this site enlivened it greatly. Sorry to hear that he's no longer with us, but the memory of him shall remain.
That's a shock, he couldn't have been that old.
Sorry to hear that.
RIP Norrie... He's left a great legacy in his routes, and he was always good value on these forums.
Sad news. There's some footage of him climbing on the Cobbler in winter on Utube somewhere.
Sad news indeed.
Sad to hear this, he was a character indeed. I was lucky to spend a wee climbing trip with him up in the NW about ten years ago. I remember sorting the gear for a winter attempt on East Buttress on Beinn Eighe and asked him how many quickdraws he wanted to take. He suggested three would be enough. He still had that woolly orange balaclava in place of a helmet. All the best Norrie.
I am really sad to hear this. He was a great guy.
Very sad news. I was sorry when he stopped posting on this forum a few years back
RIP Norrie.....never met him, crossed swords on here a few times with him but huge respect to him and his generation of climbers.
Not sure i always appreciated his posting, but he definitely added to the forums
Really saddened to hear this. The forums were poorer for his absence, and now Scottish climbing is that wee bit less entertaining and special as well. Sincere condolences to his family and the CDMC.
Thank you 65 and everyone else for your kind comments. I have posted a link to this UKC thread into the Creag Dhu MC Members private Facebook page. So all your comments will be appreciated by his close friends, family and fellow members. Thank you.
He was a legend on this forum back in the day. Always knew never to engage in forum combat with Norrie. He was certainly one of the few who could walk the talk.
RIP - sad news indeed.
I too wish to offer my condolences to Norrie's family.
The site was never boring when Norrie was about.
71 according to Wikipedia. As others have said a great contribution to Scottish climbing and for a time he certainly enlivened these forums with his robust posting style.
I enjoyed his forum contributions, the information and the dry wit. Perhaps he didn't suffer gladly those he took for fools but I found if you treated him with respect he was fine with those with different opinions to his own. RIP Norrie.
Naughty. See https://www.ukclimbing.com/user/profile.php?id=13126
UKC was good in the old days, the forums are missing something now.
Norrie certainly enlivened these forums, and always gave good advice, packaged in his own style.
It would be nice if the UKC editorial team rose to the occasion and published/sought an Obituary.
I remember him mentioning he still had one new route on the Ben he wanted to do, I hope he managed it.
Sad news. Didn’t know him personally but a valued contributor on here and of course to Scottish climbing.
Imagine the chutzpah to solo Centurion in 1971. Chapeau, and RIP.
> Norrie certainly enlivened these forums, and always gave good advice, packaged in his own style.
> It would be nice if the UKC editorial team rose to the occasion and published/sought an Obituary.
Sad news, and yes it would be great if UKC (Natalie where are you?) could look through Norrie's posts and put together some of his gems, for us to re-live.
I remember being at the CIC one weekend early 80's and Norrie and some mates turned up (not booked of course). All they had to eat was a sack of spuds and a big bottle of cooking oil with which they made chips.
Very sad. As someone said an elder statesman who did not suffer fools gladly.
Always used to open the popcorn and pull up a chair when some young whippersnapper decided to take him on.
Ach, sorry to hear that. Never met but he made several kind comments over the years on my blog, which rather belied the formidable reputation he seems to have had on this forum. One of the good guys I suspect. (And loved the post above about the three quickdraws!)
The link details have been changed. Thank you.
That's sad, he was 71? He looked spritely the one time I met him but that was 15 years ago. The old Glasgow effect holds even for someone who was active and fit.
Very sad. Always seemed to end any exchange with him on the forums both gently ribbed and better informed.
Natalie Berry did a good article on fellow CDMC member John Cullen.
From knowing Norrie personally for over 43 years I do not think anyone could or should capture the essence of Norrie. Also In a strange way Norrie actively discouraged publicity around his and fellow CDMC members exploits.
In his own well used words, “Naw, naw, naw.”
Ah, sad to hear this. He was a great presence on here; funny, experienced, acerbic. I’d always hoped he might make it back to this fold.
> That is sad news... his solo of Centurion on The Ben...
I first met him on the Cobbler 43 years ago, he led me up a few routes but only placed a couple of runners that day.
I was surprised to see he got sewing machine leg like the rest of us!
> Always seemed to end any exchange with him on the forums both gently ribbed and better informed
I shall always remember him for teaching me what the emoticon is for a bared arse
( x )
I enjoyed reading his comments on here over the years. Never realised what a good climber he was until I read the Ken Crocket Nevis book. The only one of Norrie's routes I've done is fawlty towers, which he would have probably regarded as very small beer, but exciting enough for me.
That’s a shocker! First met Norrie at th bottom of the etive slabs in the mid 70s, this place was the poorer for his absence. Sympathies to his family and friends
That was good and one I missed!
That's a real shame - he was a goldmine of information and advice.
Never met Norrie but really enjoyed his posts on here. A sad loss.
> Natalie Berry did a good article on fellow CDMC member John Cullen.
> From knowing Norrie personally for over 43 years I do not think anyone could or should capture the essence of Norrie. Also In a strange way Norrie actively discouraged publicity around his and fellow CDMC members exploits.
> In his own well used words, “Naw, naw, naw.”
Spot on Davie
Norrie found his way to the Scottishhills website. Posted the occasional gem and seemed a bit more relaxed.
Norrie Muir was the person with whom I most wish I’d climbed. Sure, he’d have burned me off and taken the piss out of me. But it wouldn’t have mattered, would have just been part of the game. Afterwards we’d have shared a few bevvies, talked about this and that.
People rightly remember him from these forums. Cyberspace being what it is, it’s temptingly easy to forget what a fearsome climber he was, back in the real world. Once, on here, some fool scornfully muttered, “What’s Norrie ever done?” The reply was withering. “Open a winter guidebook to the Ben - at any page!”
There must be a legion of Norrie stories. I remember him once nonchalantly mentioning having soloed the Rasp – onsight, naturally. A very bold thing to do, back then, before climbing walls allowed people to develop power and fitness. He didn’t climb much on grit and I’m guessing he wouldn’t have known about the knee bars and the head-jam. He reckoned that climbing down wasn’t really an option, so upwards it had to be.
An attempt at the first British solo of the North Face of the Eiger certainly upped the boldness stakes. He made swift progress until the weather crapped out. Descended, then realised that the weather was starting to improve. (In those days, weather forecasting was primitive, compared to what it is now.)
What to do? Go back up, already a bit knackered, on such a long and demanding route? Or have the self-discipline to walk away? Norrie made the hard – but correct – decision, however heartbreaking.
Back in fairytale world (oops, cyberspace), he delighted in playing the role of the curmudgeonly old git, shooing off the whippersnappers. Occasionally though, you’d glimpse the kindness and decency lurking behind his gruffness. I always dreaded him ripping me to shreds – and he could so easily have done. But, if anything, he seemed genially amused.
He once let slip that he was a wee bit proud of Silver Tear. (I just thought it was a great name!) Maybe a route like that says what matters about a man like Norrie.
I thought he got banned rather than leaving. He was great fun and very knowledgeable and had an amazing climbing CV. Although I enjoyed the challenge of the odd bit of virtual sparing it was when posters were clueless about him that the black comedy sparks would really fly. Really sad news.
> Norrie found his way to the Scottishhills website. Posted the occasional gem and seemed a bit more relaxed.
Mike W - that is an interesting article. Interesting in that Norrie attempted to remain anonymous, yet got outed twice on Scottishhills.com.
Norrie is having the last laugh with me because just when I thought I knew him something like this article pops up. Really just sums up Norrie’s multi-faceted and contradictory character for me.
I thought so too.
I remember reading that he'd posted a link to a photo of a man making love to a dog upon which he'd pasted Sloper's head.
Mike that is a great post, thank you.
Anyone who could circumvent Norrie’s and the CDMC’s rigid non-publicity policy did well.
Norrie’s solo efforts were never quite so straightforward or without incident.
There was his solo attempt on Coffin Corner, Craig Y Barns, Dunkeld involving the use of his leather trouser belt and buckle followed by the calling out of the Fire Brigade and deployment of ladders.
> Occasionally though, you’d glimpse the kindness and decency lurking behind his gruffness.
That was my experience of Norrie - I think we met briefly at a funeral years ago, but my main contact with him came through correspondence concerning his completion of various hill lists. As well as the hard climbing he also clearly just loved being out, and over time he worked his way round several of the main Scottish lists: Munros (finished on Bynack More, 18 June 1988), Corbetts (Clisham, 14 June 1997) and Grahams (Stob na Cruaiche, August 2014). Unsurprisingly his first Corbett was the Cobbler (25 September 1966), although his first Graham - not that Grahams existed at the time - had been Ben Venue in 1961.
In correspondence he was a pleasant mix of polite, modest, quite formal and helpfully informative. Above all, a love of the hills came through. I asked whether he had a good day for his 1997 Clisham ascent, and he wrote back saying that yes he did and there were only two Corbetts on which he hadn't had a view from the top - Binnein an Fhidheir and Beinn an Oir, adding "I intend to go back and get a view sometime". That was in October 2008, and I very much hope that in the subsequent decade he did indeed go back and get those views.
Sloper deserved it. He is a friend of mine and his need to play his online cartoon character always saddened me. Even so these days all we have is Birdie Num Num: in the old days the cartoon reactionary country squire battling with the hard mountain man's ascerbic wit seemed like tussling titans in comparison. In the background Norrie helped many climbers and mountain walkers who asked for help on this site (ditto for Tom on anything from law to highball solos...which he continued on the other channel alongside breaking the record for negatve karma). I'd have loved to have met Norrie.
Yes, Norrie was always first to offer useful advice based on his vast knowledge of Scottish climbing.
Strangely enough I once met Sloper in Edinburgh and Norrie was talking about coming over from Glasgow to say hello. Unfortunately he never made it. It would have been a memorable evening.
Maybe in drinking terms... I'm sure they would have got on fantastically. Tom in his youth was a hardcore climber pushing his onsight limits at only a notch or two off the very best.
A tribute from George Adam, via his daughter Mairi Adam:
Norrie Muir - A possible Regret.
I first met Norrie around the mid 1960s and climbed skied and walked around Scotland for the best part of 54 years.
Reminiscing in a tent one winter evening we spoke of his venture onto the North Wall of the Eiger. He had soloed up as far as the death bivouac, in his own words for a wee 'peek a boo.' Knowing Norrie's ability as a climber and mountaineer at the time he told me this, I said to him "ya mug" - you should have kept going and soloed the whole route.
But Norrie being Norrie was out for a stroll- so equipped with rock boots, axe, crampons, harness one sling one carabiner a sweater and a pair of TUFF boots off he went.
For those not in the know TUFF boots were a kind of flimsy, cardboard and faux -veneer leather boot that you would not want to wear on a wet day in any town in Scotland.
Had Norrie not just gone for a peek a boo and had taken his proper climbing gear, without doubt he would have soloed the North Wall of the Eiger.
I shall miss his company greatly.
Some photos from George here:
Sad news - condolences to all. Never met him, but wished I had done, think we would have got on well.
Condolences to all of Norrie's family and friends. He was an incredible character. I have fond memories of the heyday of UKC forums bantering away with him.
I once gave him a lift to see an Andy Nisbet lecture in Stirling. Andy was posting slides from his Scottish climbing career and showed one of a very steep (and very deliberately nameless!) ice clad coire in "once in a lifetime" condition from the 80's. He stated he and his partner had gone in, then thought better of tackling the huge vertical walls and left. This prompted Norrie to pipe up irreverently from the audience, 'Whit? We woulda had a go!!!'
Thank you George -that is a great tribute to the man and cracking pictures.
You and Norrie were a great double act full of mischievous humour.
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