THE HISTORY OF H.P. HERCULES
RELIABLE AND ROBUST LUXURY WATCHES MADE BY HENZI & PFAFF
Learn how Hercules conveyed luxury into strength and resistance by putting their watch to the ultimate test.
MADE IN SWITZERLAND
Hercules offers two high-quality Swiss-made mechanical movement options for their watches, each with its own unique features and advantages:
Micro Rotor Movement: This movement is designed with a micro rotor, which is asmall automatic winding system that helps power the watch. One key benefit of this design is that it allows for a thinner overall watch profile compared to regular automatic watches that rely on the movement of your wrist to wind. Additionally,the placement of the micro rotor allows for a close fit between the movement and the anti-reflective coated sapphire caseback,giving the wearer a clear view of the intricate mechanics of the watch and the decorated bridges with Superluminova-filled height lines.
Hand Wound Movement with Two Barrels: The hand-wound movement with two barrels provides an impressive 120 hours (5days) of power reserve. Hand-wound movements are appreciated by watch enthusiasts for their simplicity and the connection they offer to the watch’s inner workings. Through the caseback, you can get an up-close view of the movement,including engraved height lines representing the Nanga Parbat mountain, which are filled with Swiss BGW9 SuperLuminova for a striking glow in the dark.
Furthermore, each Hercules watch is assembled by hand, emphasizing the craftsmanship andattention to detail that goes into its production. To ensure accuracy and precision, the complete watch undergoes testing by Timelab inSwitzerland to receive an official “Observatoire Chronométrique+” certification. If the watch successfully passes this test,it earns the prestigious title of a “Chronometer,” signifying its exceptional timekeeping performance.
NANGA PARBAT, one of the few +8’000m peaks in the world
In 1953, an Austrian mountaineer called Hermann Buhl became the first one to reach the top of the Nanga Parbat (8’126M). 31 Men tried to do this before him but didn’t return, which gave the Nanga Parbat the nickname “Killer Mountain”. Hermann and the entire expedition crew were equipped with Hercules timepieces made by the watchmaking atelier Henzi & Pfaff. The watches proved to be reliable, robust, and precise timekeepers during their adventure. After none of the experimental clocks failed, Henzi & Pfaff successfully placed the proven reliability under extreme weather conditions at the center of its advertising. This was reinforced by the presence of the distinctive brand Hercules, which conveyed strength and resistance. The successful ascent and the worldwide attention of the expedition were marketed effectively by Henzi & Pfaff. As a result, Henzi & Pfaff equipped further expeditions with watches and thus developed the image of a reliable, robust and at the same time sporty watch.
the most complete and advanced mountaineer of his time
(21 September 1924 – 27 June 1957) Hermann was an Austrian mountaineer and is considered one of the best climbers of all time. He was particularly innovative in applying Alpine style climbing to Himalayan climbing.
THE BOOK: NANGA PARBAT PILGRIMAGE
There is also a book written about the adventure of Hermann Buhl climbing the mountain.
In 1953 Hermann Buhl made the first ascent of Nanga Parbat – the ninth-highest mountain in the world, and the third 8,000-metre peak to be climbed, following Annapurna and Everest. It was one of the most incredible and committed climbs ever made. Continuing alone and without supplementary oxygen, Buhl made a dash for the summit after his partners turned back. On a mountain that had claimed thirty-one lives, an exhausted Buhl waded through deep snow and climbed over technical ground to reach the summit, driven on by an ‘irresistible urge’. After a night spent standing on a small ledge at over 8,000 metres, Buhl returned forty-one hours later, exhausted and at the very limit of his endurance.Written shortly after Buhl’s return from the mountain, Nanga Parbat Pilgrimage is a classic of mountaineering literature that has inspired thousands of climbers. It follows Buhl’s inexorable rise from rock climber to alpinist to mountaineer, until, almost inevitably, he makes his phenomenal Nanga Parbat climb. Buhl’s book, and ascent, reminded everyone that, while the mountains could never be conquered, they could be climbed with sufficient enthusiasm, spirit and dedication.
On the big screen
The Climb is a Canadian-British coproduced adventure drama film directed by Donald Shebib and released in 1986. A dramatization of mountaineer Hermann Buhl’s 1953 attempt to climb Nanga Parbat, the film stars Bruce Greenwood as Buhl alongside James Hurdle, Kenneth Welsh, Ken Pogue, Thomas Hauff, Guy Bannerman, David James Elliott, and Tom Butler as members of his expedition
The film was broadcast on British television in 1986 as part of Mountain Men, a series of three films dramatizing noteworthy historical climbing expeditions. In Canada, it was announced in the Perspectives Canada program at both the 1986 Toronto International Film Festival and the 1987 Toronto International Film Festival.
The film received two Genie Award nominations at the 9th Genie Awards in 1988, for Best Cinematography (Richard Leiterman) and Best Sound Editing (Robin Leigh, Richard Cadger, Jane Tattersall, Penny Hozy, and Peter McBurnie). Leiterman received the Canadian Society of Cinematographers Feature Award for his film in 1988.
Nanga Parbat 1953
This movie is a documentary directed by Hans Ertl (1908–2000). He was a mountaineer and was considered one of the best cameramen of his time. He specialized in mountain, sports, and expedition films. In this role, he accompanied the expedition to Nanga Parbat.
He was part of the expedition on the mountain, so all the footage is real-life footage from the climb, making it even more precise. The coolest thing is that you can see the expedition members wearing the Hercules Watches! The movie was broadcasted on German national television on the 17th of June 1969. At that time, the Henzi & Pfaff factory was still active and producing their watches.