Garibotti knows the threat firsthand. By his tally, around 30 people he has roped up with died climbing. The Piolets d’Or 2 times tried to nominate Garibotti for the award, at the time in 2006, for a new route on Cerro Torre, in Patagonia, and as soon as in 2009, for the first traverse of the entire Cerro Torre massif. Two times he refused.
Most stunning was whom the jury resolved to honor in 1998: a Russian group that designed the to start with ascent of the west confront of the Himalayan peak Makalu in 1997. Two of the climbers on the expedition died in the approach. The organizers introduced a new criterion immediately after backlash that calendar year, demanding, according to Trommsdorff, “that you have to occur back again in 1 piece.”
The challenge, in Garibotti’s viewpoint, isn’t that the awards stimulate climbers to acquire additional threat, but that in awarding dangerous climbs, they validate risky habits. “If you have illustration of climbs that are reckless, there are going to be a lot more reckless climbs,” he reported.
Just after winning a Piolet d’Or in 2019 with his Slovakian teammates Ales Cesen and Luka Strazar, the British climber Tom Livingstone wrote in an essay on his website that the award “plays on my human ego” in worrisome techniques.
“I currently have a devil on my shoulder at the stop of a operate-out” — a area of sparsely guarded climbing that can result in unsafe falls — “who whispers, ‘uh oh, you’re gonna get a large one particular!’” Livingstone wrote. “I do not want another featuring me a golden trophy.” He recognized the award only simply because his teammates desired to.
Of system, for numerous climbers, danger is a huge section of the sport’s appeal.
“We have to understand that in regular mountaineering, loss of life is a likelihood,” said Reinhold Messner, 77, a single of the most lauded alpinists of the final century. “If it is not a possibility, it is not mountaineering. The artwork of surviving is just that. It is an artwork.”