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Adventure Sports

with Stefan Nestler

Good against winter depression

Weihnachts_EverestThese days I received a funny Christmas card of an expedition organizer. It showed a Santa Claus on Mount Everest, with his finger in front of his mouth: “Pst … definitely too high for my reindeer.” This reminded me that I wanted to wish my old friend Chomolungma Merry Christmas. For years, he can be reached by mobile phone. At the first ring, he takes the call.

Namaste, Chomo! This is Stefan.

Hej, I haven’t heard from you for a long time.

Sorry for that. I wanted to check on your condition.

Sunshine, minus 26 degrees Celsius, 65 km/h at the summit, good visibility.

Sounds like calm winter weather.

I like it.

Have you heard that you’ll be visited?

For sure a few hardy hikers who’ll be standing in Base Camp, cursing because once again the batteries of their digital cameras have run down due to the cold.

Wrong prediction! Two real mountaineers want to climb you in winter.

Is it already 1 April? Since 1993 nobody has climbed to my head. Don’t tell me, it’s this guy from Japan, who has already frozen almost all fingers and is scratching me every fall!

Mount Everest, Lhotse, Makalu (from l. to r.)

Mount Everest, Lhotse, Makalu (from l. to r.)

No, neither joke nor Kuriki. The Spaniards Alex Txikon and Carlos Rubio will set off to Kathmandu on the first Christmas Day and will come around at Base Camp in the first week of January. How do you find that?

Not bad, a bit of distraction does no harm. It’s good against winter depression, says my therapist.

And what else does he prescribe to you?

Well, the usual in case of burnout: Much rest, above all don’t read the newspaper!

Why this?

Because of the “faked news”.

Does Donald Trump now also want to climb Everest?

Who knows? After the Chinese now want to build a large tourist center on the north side, he could come up with the idea of ​​opening a casino on the south side. But I did not mean Trump when I said “faked news”.


Real (1,2) and fake (3,4) (© The Himalayan Times)

Real (1,2) and fake (3,4) (© The Himalayan Times)

Well, these summit dodgers. These two Indians, who have copied themselves into the summit pictures of other climbers gaining Everest certificates by trickery.

They shouldn’t rob you of your sleep. They were unmasked, and they were suspended from their work for the Indian police.

That’s all I need! I made a proposal to the Nepalese government after this story.

A proposal?

They should install a speed camera at the summit as it is used in road traffic to catch speeders. If someone passes the light barrier, he is photographed. Of course solar-powered.

And, how did the government in Kathmandu react?

They rejected the proposal.

For what reason?

This reform would make the liaison officers unnecessary, they said.

Everest Base Camp

Everest Base Camp

But usually they don’t appear in Base Camp anyway, after they have collected their money from the expeditions.

That’s it. So far, they have not been there because they thought it was unnecessary. Now they would not be there because they would be unnecessary.

Strange logic.

Some things are strange when people deal with me. Why do you think I need a therapist?

But you are the highest of all mountains. You should be bursting with self-confidence.

Just a facade. And it begins to crumble.

I thought climate change was the cause of increasing ice- and rockfall on your flanks.

Right! But when I said the crumbling facade I meant it rather in a more figurative sense. I just want to be respected.

What can I do to strengthen your ego?

Send me less egomaniacs and more top climbers!

Ueli Steck

Ueli Steck

A good start will be made with Txikon. Finally, he has climbed Nanga Parbat for the first time in winter. And in spring, Ueli Steck will arrive.

To be beaten again? (Laughs)

Stop, Chomo! That’s nothing to make jokes about. He wants to try the Everest-Lhotse traverse. Without breathing mask.

Ui, it takes my breath away. (Laughs) Man, laughed twice in half a minute. Why don’t you call me more frequently?

Okay, promised! Chomo, even if you are a Buddhist: Merry Christmas!

And you!


23. December 2016 | 19:55