Not for butter and cheese, but for a meeting, assessment center or brainstorming.
The Eiger made him strong. For the big and difficult walls and peaks of this world. Meanwhile, he is one of the world’s top mountaineers, and mountain sports media report regularly about him. There are also sponsors from business who identify with Schäli’s achievements and image and are therefore happy to cooperate with him.
Roger Schäli has been doing sports for as long as he can remember. His father made him discover his love for nature. In his Swiss home town of Sörenberg, he went skiing in winter as a child and adolescent and climbed in the mountains in summer. When he was given a climbing harness at the age of 14, it was kind of an initial spark. Today Schäli is one of the great all-rounders in the alpine scene. He likes rock as well as ice in the highest degrees of difficulty.
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Climbing as a passion, not just a job
All this training is easy for him because climbing is still his hobby, his passion. He feels that being able to live from it now is a great privilege. If you watch the 34-year-old practicing in the hall, arms and legs work like a Swiss clock. He climbs up like a gecko. It looks light and aesthetic when it moves in the wall. He is strong. This is not just revealed by his handshake. Pronounced muscles stand out under his T-shirt. Not a gram of body fat. He says of himself: “Not only my body, but also my psyche has become stronger in recent years. I can go to my limits a lot more today than I was five years ago. ”In general, a lot has changed in recent years. The trained carpenter and certified mountain guide is rarely in the mountains with guests, i.e. paying customers: “There is simply not enough time for that. I’m already pretty busy with training, lectures, expeditions and their preparation. ”He also hardly finds time to pursue his hobby of skiing. And that although he used to work as a ski instructor. Cross-country skiing, on the other hand, can be combined with endurance training in winter, because Schäli openly admits: “Climbing takes up a lot of space in my life.”
An accident made the climber more cautious
At the age of 17 – impetuous and inexperienced – Schäli fell angry in the climbing garden. Open fractures on both legs and a broken vertebral process force him to his knees, but he never thought of stopping for a second. The accident cannot stop his passion, but it made him much more cautious. Sometimes, especially when he has climbed a lot and is very tired, colleagues ask him if he limps easily. He himself does not notice these long-term consequences of the accident, except that his right ankle is less flexible than the left.
Sometimes Schäli speaks to the Eiger
Mountaineering and climbing made him a globetrotter. Schäli goes on large expeditions once or twice a year. He is particularly interested in the remote corners of the world: mountains where no one has been before. Routes that are new territory. Unfamiliar terrain, that’s what appeals to him.
In general, traveling, being with friends and climbing partners from all over the world, is a big part of his passion, which goes far beyond the sporting side. Schäli also establishes a relationship with the mountains that he climbs. If you ask more closely, he laughs from ear to ear and explains: “Figuratively speaking, I knock on the mountains that I want to climb. And so it happens that I talk to the Eiger and ask him if he gives me permission to climb his summit. “
The Eiger has not only brought him great success, but also – it’s hard to believe – acted as a partner broker. Schäli’s girlfriend, Yuri Kato, is the daughter of the first ascent of the so-called “Japanese Direttissima” on the Eiger north face. When all those mountaineers who had left their mark on the Eiger, i.e. new routes, were invited to Grindelwald several years ago, Yuri accompanied her father and, in the presence of Schäli, expressed the wish to stand on the summit of the Eiger for his 30th birthday. So without further ado he took her on the rope and climbed her over the Mittellegigrat to the summit. Since then, the two have also formed a “rope team” down in the valley. They recently bought an old caravan at the foot of the Eiger north face and are now converting it together. “This mountain, it connects us. We like to spend time together there. “
The other side of the mountains
But the mountains also brought dark moments and doubts into Schäli’s life. When the cameraman and photographer Daniel Ahnen had a fatal accident in a crevasse on Schäli’s expedition to the Arwa Spire in India in May 2011, he described the tragedy as the low point of his career and life: “Someone lost his life on our expedition. It couldn’t have been worse. ”For five days, Schäli and his South Tyrolean climbing partner Simon Gietl searched desperately for the missing person in a labyrinth of crevasses and risked their own lives in the process. Vain. Difficult, agonizing months follow. Full of doubt. Full of sadness.
The walk to Daniel’s parents was cruel and liberating at the same time: “As bitter as the meeting was, it was a first step in processing. It was also extremely important for Daniel’s parents to find out every detail about Daniel’s death. ”In August 2012, Schäli took one last big step. Together with his friend and climbing partner Simon Gietl, he traveled to the Arwa Spire again to deal intensively with what he had experienced at the scene of the accident. Also to build a memorial for Daniel, to pray, to cry, to say goodbye “finally”.
The two climbers also have a medallion in their luggage, which they hang in the summit loop for their deceased friend on September 28, 2012 on the summit of Arwa Spire. “This time we were on the summit for someone, not with them. Our success was secondary, ”says Schäli and pauses for a long time. After much deliberation, he continues: “This trip was incredibly intense, emotional, but also beautiful. We found something like peace. But we will never forget all of this. “
The Alm … functional and spartan, it once and now provides shelter and a meal for those seeking protection. But a lot has happened in recent years. Today, many mountain huts themselves have become the destination of the hike: Where cattle used to be kept, there are now conference rooms; where the trough used to be there is topadultreview.com a whirlpool. Alpine pastures have become luxury hotels, star restaurants, studios, therapy and meeting rooms. Just hiking was yesterday. In our photo show we show you how you live on the mountain pastures today. What is your favorite holiday on the mountain? Vote in the top right!
The Alm – from the refuge to the holiday and hiking destination
Photo series with 10 pictures
The Alm – then and now
Originally alpine pastures were used by herdsmen. They needed shelter to farm in the mountains during the summer months. They gave mountaineers seeking protection a roof over their heads, and the culinary provisions consisted of alpine produce.
But technology also found its way into the alpine pastures: The first farm roads, all-wheel drive vehicles and lifts were built and brought the alpine pastures electricity, water, heating and fresh food every day.
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Lifestyle at the alpine hut: Demand shapes supply
Of course it still exists, the barren hut in the mountains where adventurers whip their battered bodies back into shape with a large portion of sleep in the mattress dorm and an even larger portion of Kasspatzn. But just hiking was yesterday. Today the alpine huts also attract non-alpinists to the mountain with tempting offers: sauna, wine tasting, swimming pool, conference room, bowling alley. Facilities that don’t really fit into the traditional image of alpine pastures and refuge huts. This is how the old barn turns into one "unique FirstClass PanoramaFerienStadl" like the Bienenalm in Styria …
Oysters instead of alpine cheese – and champagne with it
Some mountain huts have turned into true star kitchens: multi-page menus with fine creations are displacing simple mountaineering meals. The Kaiserschmarrn has to give way to the caviar, instead of curd strudel there is tiramisu. The gourmet stop has become indispensable in many top ski areas. The "Schnuraln"-Hiking tour in Pinzgau ("Schnuraln" = want to discover, note d. Red.) Lures with one, for example "Well-filled program consisting of a ‘cordial’ six-course menu hike, round tables in the forge or mine hikes".
And when even the largest offer is no longer enough, you get creative yourself. This is how the section group organizes for mountaineers "Beware, friends" a cooking duel at the self-catering hut. The catch: Participants are allowed to bring a maximum of four ingredients. And not just any: Take the last letter of your first and last name, go back three letters in the alphabet, and get ingredients that begin with the letters determined in this way. Not as exciting as the feeling of the summit storm, but still.
Alm deluxe: for the highest demands
Are the demands even higher? No problem, the Alm keeps up. After feasting, it’s time for a gourmet slumber: high up on the mountain pastures attract luxury alpinists from all over the world. The Wedelhütte in the Hochzillertal, for example, offers five-star alpine flair with a whirlpool on the terrace, saunas in the wellness area and culinary delights – the dreamy Alpine backdrop always in view. Appropriate for the Kitzbühel region, you can enjoy the Maierl Alm (with the necessary change in your wallet) & Chalets hammam and massages. The evenings on the couch in front of the flat screen are not really rustic – and neither is the fire that crackles in the background in the designer fireplace. There is also a full range of party programs for relaxation "hot beats and cool drinks" or folk music evenings.
At the alpine pasture, there’s no sin? Naked Facts
The Reitlehenalm in the Salzburger Land is creative: when drawing nudes at 1280 meters, mountain lovers can live out their artistic talent – from a perspective and with backgrounds that provide a "normal" Atelier cannot offer. Self-painted masterpieces are created under professional guidance.
At the Alm there is ‘peace’: therapeutic use
The retreats in the mountains are not just for pure pleasure. Medicine has also discovered the alpine pastures. No ringing phone, no emails, no deadlines. An environment in which you can distance yourself from the stressful world in the event of illness "down there" can win and recover from burnout. The seclusion is also helpful with addiction problems of all kinds. But regardless of whether burnout or addiction: Not only the seclusion helps. The integration into fixed processes shows the patient again what an orderly life with structure and healthy rhythm looks like.
Working on the alpine pasture: productivity at height
In addition to this development, there are also operators who try the opposite. They bring people to work on the alpine pastures. Not to butter and cheese, but to meetings, assessment centers or brainstorming.