1926 - 1959
Harry Winstone was born Heinrich Weinstein in Vienna, Austria, on March 6, 1926, to Hedwig (Hedy) and Oskar Weinstein and in 1938, Heinrich and his mother fled to England after the Nazis overran Austria. Heinrich set about learning the language and the customs of his new home and did so with such success that later very few of his associates realized English was not his native tongue. He worked during the day to support his mother and himself, but for seven years he attended evening classes at London University where he obtained his engineering degree in 1948. In that same year he changed his name from Weinstein to Winstone and was issued a British Certificate of Naturalization on May 4. In his spare time he exercised his lifelong love of the outdoors through Scouting and Youth-Hostelling.
Not long after graduation, Harry sought new horizons and decided to move out to Canada where work opportunities were better and the mountains had a romantic calling. Winstone became a Canadian Citizen on December 21, 1953. While living in Vancouver he joined the local section of the ACC and began exploring the surrounding mountains on skis. He made two early trips up to the Black Tusk meadows and wrote: "If heaven is more beautiful than this, I shall be satisfied."
His work as an engineer took him to live in several British Columbian communities and he always maintained his interest in the outdoors. Winstone also loved skiing and did much to establish the sport ski mountaineering in Prince Rupert, attempting to reach some of the unclimbed summits of the Seven Sisters group near Hazelton, and skiing on the slopes of Mount Blaney.
In 1954 Winstone took part in the ACC summer camp in the Tonquin Valley. In 1955 he went in with Ian Kay and Alan Melville to some unclimbed 8,000 foot mountains between the headwaters of the Bridge and Lord Rivers. Finally in 1958 Winstone attended the ACC Mummery summer camp where he made first ascents of M-1 and M-2½ with John Owen and two others on July 24. Adolf Bitterlich and Roger Neave were also at this camp.
After moving to Chemainus on Vancouver Island he made ski trips up to the Comox District Mountaineering Club cabin on Mount Becher behind Courtenay with Elizabeth and Patrick Guilbride. In 1958 Harry Winstone and Syd Watts formed the Island Mountain Ramblers, a mountaineering club whose objectives were mainly island based. The Island Mountain Ramblers has continued to remain active and in 2008 are celebrating fifty years as a mountaineering club.
Harry Winstone died on July 12, 1959, from a fall on the slopes of Argus Mountain in Strathcona Provincial Park on Vancouver Island, at the age of thirty-three. Harry's outlet was the mountains but he had a keen interest in the scouting movement and made a hobby of collecting and singing folk songs and writing poetry making him a popular raconteur around the campfire. His ashes were scattered near the Black Tusk in Garibaldi Park.
In 1962, Winstone's climbing
companion Ian Kay, named Mount Winstone in the Taseko Lake area, in honour
of his deceased friend. The next year (1963) Ralph
Hutchinson from Nanaimo, who knew Harry Winstone from the IMR,
and three others made the first ascent of Mount Winstone.
Winstone, Harry. "Tonquin." Canadian Alpine Journal. Vol. 40. The Alpine Club of Canada. Banff, Alberta. 1955. p 106-108.
Kay, Ian. "Bridge River Ramblings." Canadian Alpine Journal. Vol. 41. The Alpine Club of Canada. Banff, Alberta. 1956. p 51-56.
Craze, Margaret. "Mummery Camp, 1958." Canadian Alpine Journal. Vol. 42. The Alpine Club of Canada. Banff, Alberta. 1959. p 97-98.
Pigou, Elfreda. "The M's of Mummery." Canadian Alpine Journal. Vol. 42. The Alpine Club of Canada. Banff, Alberta. 1959. p 98-100.
"Island Climber Dies, 2 Stranded On Peak." Victoria Daily Colonist. [Victoria, B.C.] (July 13, 1959) p. 1.
Climber Killed: Victoria Men In Death Vigil." Victoria Daily Colonist.
[Victoria, B.C.] (July 14, 1959) p. 1-2.
"Chemainus Man Dies in Mountain Fall." Comox District Free Press. [Comox, B.C.] (July 15, 1959) p. 1.
"Two See Friend Fall to Death." Comox District Free Press. [Comox, B.C.] (July 22, 1959) p. 1.
Martinson, Paul. "Accident on Mt. Argus." Canadian Alpine Journal. Vol. 43. The Alpine Club of Canada. Banff, Alberta. 1960. p 60-61.
In Memoriam. "Harry Winstone." Canadian Alpine Journal. Vol. 43. The Alpine Club of Canada. Banff, Alberta. 1960. p 106-108.