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Von Melle and Stitzinger abandon Everest expedition

Alix von Melle and Luis Stitzinger in Chinese Basecamp

Alix von Melle and Luis Stitzinger in Chinese Basecamp

Actually, they wanted to climb Mount Everest without bottled oxygen this spring. Actually, they were on the Tibetan north side of Everest where no one was injured by the earthquake. Nevertheless, the German couple Alix von Melle and Luis Stitzinger finished their Everest expedition, before they could make any attempt on the mountain. “Although there is no damage to people or property on the north side, we cannot turn a blind eye to the suffering thas has happened”, Alix and Luis write on their homepage. “Moreover, we do not want to be the reason why Nepalese helpers, cooks and Climbing Sherpas have to stay here and cannot go home to their families to see if everything is alright. Under the circumstances, we think it’s wrong to continue our  expedition. Even a possible summit success would feel vapid and invalid. We couldn’t find any joy in it.” Now both want to try to travel back via the Tibetan capital Lhasa.

Book Everest remains open

It’s not clear whether other climbers on the north side of Everest will follow their example. “We also can understand those who still want to take their opportunity on Everest – perhaps the only one in their whole life. Also for us, the decision was not easy. We were well prepared, well acclimatized on the mountain and highly motivated for the challenge. But in the end we always follow our feelings, and it doesn’t feel right this time.” 43-year-old Alix and 46-year-old Luis so far climbed six eight-thousanders, five of them together. The chapter Everest 2015 is finished, but the book remains open for them: “Be sure: Everest, we will be back! Someday.”


27. April 2015 | 12:01