THANK YOU wholeheartedly

Not even know where to start…

Since I embarked on the winter expeditions, there have been many experiences, thousands of thoughts that have crossed my mind. But everything has fallen short after the summit of Manaslu on January 6, 2023. I think I have never had so many feelings together at the same time: joy, excitement, fear, nerves... They say that there are 26 feelings that you should experience at some point in time. life. I have experienced them in just two weeks.

On December 26, we set foot on the CB of Manaslu and 11 days later, we found ourselves at the top, at the highest point of the eighth highest mountain on the planet. I couldn't believe it, I had made the challenge that I had set myself in 2021 come true, I have lost count of the times I had imagined that moment, and finally, it has come true.

But it has not been easy. It has been one of the toughest, most demanding, and most dangerous climbs of my entire professional career. I've had a bad time, very bad to be honest, now I feel a certain emptiness, it's been three winters working on this project.

Now that I am safe and sound, rested and with a clearer mind, I would like to share with all of you my latest experience in the Himalayas. I'll try to be as brief as possible, I promise.

As you know, on December 26 we launched the Winter Summits project. Thanks to the two previous experiences we were able to see the terrain first hand. But that didn't stop us from spending hours and hours thinking about it, analyzing the best strategy. The only thing that was clear to us was that the ascent had to be as fast as possible to avoid any risk of frostbite. After a couple of rotations in height, the perfect moment has come. Despite the cold (we came to suffer temperatures as low as -50º) and the strong wind, it seemed that the weather was going to improve the next few days. We did not doubt it, we could not miss the opportunity. It was either now or never.

So on January 4, at 8:00 a.m., we took all the necessary material and put our backpacks on our backs. We went from Base Camp to Camp 1 and from 1 to 2. And here I make a point to comment that this section was, without a doubt, one of the most complicated I have done in my life. And considering the amount of meters that I have climbed in the Himalayas during all these years... Really, it was very hard, very complicated, it was very, very dangerous, much more than I thought...

And, having said this, I continue. We camped, spent the night and on January 5 we went from C2 to C3. Between the excitement, the nerves, the cold and the wind, we couldn't sleep a wink. But it didn't matter, so at 11:00 p.m., we left for the summit. And the rest... is history. 10 and a half hours later, that is, at 9:30 a.m. (local time) Pasang Nurbu Sherpa, Chhapel Sherpa, Gelu Sherpa, Maila Sherpa, Mantere Lama Sherpa, Gamje Babu Sherpa and I received the best gift from the Three Wise Men, a gift he had been waiting for 3 years. We were at the top, at the summit, at the highest point of Manaslu, the eighth highest mountain in the world. It is said soon...

But everything that goes up comes down, and we had to descend, we had to return to BC, because, as I always say, and I will never tire of repeating it... the true peak is achieved when the entire team returns safely to Base Camp. Once again, said and done. We began descending, little by little, without a doubt, this wasthe most difficult part of the challenge. And finally, at 6:00 p.m. we arrived at the Base Camp. Shattered, smashed. And it is that in less than 60 hours we had achieved the entire challenge. I was unable to assume what we had achieved.

I do not want to say goodbye without first highlighting the Polish expedition of 1984. All my respects to those climbers who, without the help of new technologies, managed to crown Manaslu. They had enormous merit. Nor do I want to forget about Simone Moro. Buddy, thank you for descending practically from C2 to CB alone, because as you commented, although you had enough strength to continue ascending, you considered that you could hinder the group when descending”.

Finally... I want to congratulate and thank all the people who have supported me during my career: family, friends, colleagues, clubs, mountain federations, sponsors... Without you this dream would never have come true.

THANK YOU wholeheartedly