Look back and forward

Around new year is always a great time to look back and forward. What was 2016 for me and how do I hope 2017 will be?

Look back: 2016

Usually, I’m not the kind of guy that makes big plans for the year to come. For some reason, I made an exception for 2016. There were two things I wanted to accomplish this year:

  1. Climb Denali
  2. Become a freelance privacy/security consultant.

By now I can tell, none of the above happened!

Climb Denali

I did not (yet!) climb Denali, but I am sure I’m going to try! Does this make me feel dissatisfied on my climbing in 2016? No, certainly not! I knew I had to gain a little more experience to be welcomed in a Denali expedition. For this I made a great plan covering 2 weeks in the Alps. The main goals where to climb Grand Combin (Swiss) and Mont Blanc (France) from Italy. As you might know, this route to the summit is longer and more demanding than the normal (Gouter) route.

The plan was good, but I did not expect to be home again after 3 days. Indeed, things didn’t work out. Time for plan B. In spring 2016 I had some thoughts to climbing Mount Elbrus as preparation for Denali. Alpine Ascents also recommended this. However, after reading about Elbrus South face, I decided this was not for me. Too crowded, too easy, no fun. So at that time, I cancelled the idea.

Climbing in SwissBut, after my failure in the Alps, I needed an alternative and I needed it fast! So I decided to climb Elbrus north face, and summited! This was, without doubt, one of the best trips I ever made! The Caucasus are so magnificent! My fellow climbers were great, and this all made the trip a very emotionally intense experience .

Become freelance

The second one, become a freelance privacy/security consultant is not in scope of this blog! Sorry about that.

Look forward: 2017

Looking forward is always better than looking back! Since summiting Elbrus, I decided to start this current project: 7-Summits in 7 years. The goal is ambitious, but I fully believe I can do it. Time isn’t my biggest problem, money is. 5 of the 7-Summits are payable for most people. But this leaves Mount Everest and Mount Vinsion. Those 2 mountains are really expensive, and are hard to fund without support. I haven’t sorted this out, but am making some good progress. I met some great people who might be able to help me find a way. The challenge of climbing the 7-Summits is not just climbing those 7 mountains, it involves a lot more. I see this as another part of The Thin Line, and finding my own limits. Running this project  is just a total new experience for me.

The coming months will be dominated by extensive training. I have posted my current training schedule, and this will intensify coming months. End February/begin March I’ll head to the Eifel for a week and do a part of the Eifelsteig. This will hopefully include some wild camping, snow and low temperatures!

Tappenkarsee 201617th May is the big moment. I will catch a plane and will only get out when I’m in Anchorage. Yes, my Denali expedition will begin on 20th May! I’m really looking forward to this and am doing the best I can to be fully prepared. A lot of things can go wrong, but my shape and my gear will not be one of the things that might go wrong.

Currently, I’m looking for a little extension of my Denali trip. As said before, Elbrus was an intense experience to me, and kept me (emotionally) busy for a while. It changed the way I look at the world, myself and my life. Since the Denali-trip is longer, tougher and more extreme, I expect I need some time to think things over again. But, more on this later!

After Denali, preparing for Aconcagua starts. I did some research on this mountain before. The normal route, or the traverse are not that hard (but still not to be underestimated!), so I might go for a non-standard route. But, I haven’t decided yet!

So what do you think?

Look back and forward. Something I don’t do every year or day. But, to summarize this blog; it’s not bad.. at all!

I think I got all the ingredients to make 2017 another great year! There will be tough challenges, like climbing Denali or running the 7in7-project. Hopefully there will be a great success; summiting Denali!

I will, again, come closer.. to my thin line between pleasure and pain.

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