The Fascination

auf Deutsch

I know, it is not rational. But being in the mountains is for me almost equivalent to being alive. It is hard to describe the fascination of it, expecially the fascination of climbing. Is is a sport? Is it a dangerous addiction? Or is it just the most intense thing that we lived through - if we did live through it? Climbing has so many different aspects: adrenaline, frienship, nature. There is no single answer to why we do it. In "Klettern am anderen Ende der Welt - Climbing down under" I describe the fascination of climbing in Australia, an exotic, beautiful island in the middle of the ocean, and thousands of miles from anywhere.



My favourite. I have climbed in the Karwendel, the Dolomites, N-Wales, Colorado, Australia (My german article "Klettern am anderen Ende der Welt - Climbing down under" I describe of my climbing experinces on that beautiful, far-away isisland in the Pacific), Sardegna, .... Ice climbing brings you into a different world: sparkling crystals, icy temperatures, nothing alive, unreal shapes of ice. In order to make it to the top, you really have to get in touch with the nature around you. You need to feel where the ice is soft, where it is brittle, and where it will hold you. And if the sun comes through, you get an explosion of colors.



In skitouring the biggest enjoyment is often not the way down, but the way up. When you start off in the morning, the repetitive movement and - when you are too much out of breath to talk - the quietness make it an almost meditative activity. And when you get to the top, the world is literally at your feet. Wolfgang Guellich once said "The most important muscle for climbing is the brain." This holds especially for bouldering.You need to know your body, know how it behaves when you move. You also have to be able to visualize yourself while moving up, in order to find out which options you will have, how you can move.


Thomas Haslwanter, Last modified 2 May, 2012