photographer and European parliamentarian, Reinhold Messner was born in
Brixen, South Tyrol, Italy, on 17th September 1944. He grew up in the
Villnöss Valley in the Dolomites and later studied at the University of
He has been one of
the world’s most outstanding mountaineers for twenty years. In the
course of about one hundred trips in the mountains he has chalked up
many first ascents and was the first to climb all the world’s 8000-metre
peaks. He lectures throughout the world, makes documentary films,
contributes to well-known specialist magazines and supports the
preservation of the last wildernesses.
Contrary to modern
adventure performers, Reinhold Messner never went after records;
instead, he is interested in being exposed to nature in landscapes
hardly touched by man, and in travelling with a minimum of equipment. He
followed Mummery's "by fair means" on Nanga Parbat, Nansen's "call of
the north" to the ice packs of the Arctic and crossed the Antarctic via
the South Pole after an idea by Shackleton. Opposing his travelling on
foot to the possibilities the age of communication has to offer, he does
without any expansion bolts, oxygen masks and satellite phones - an
anachronism, true, but one that preserves an inexhaustible source of
experience in the wilderness.
He has written more than 40 books,
which have been translated into more than a dozen languages. Between his
journeys he lives in Juval Castle in South Tyrol where he runs a museum
containing a considerable collection of Tibetan art, and a hill farm
using organic methods. In addition, he continues to write books and
develop museum projects.
Reinhold Messner and Peter Habeler were the
first to summit without the use of bottled oxygen.
Reinhold Messner was the first, and many will argue the only, to ever
solo Everest on Aug 20, 1980 via the North Col/North Face.