LOWA PRO Team Luis Stitzinger
Conquering the world’s highest mountains with LOWA
The officially certified mountain and ski guide Luis Stitzinger was born in Füssen, in the southern Bavarian region of Allgäu, in 1968 and has roamed the mountains since childhood. He has been one of Germany’s most active mountaineers for many years. In addition to various six- and seven-thousanders, he has successfully climbed nine eight-thousanders to date, six of them with his wife, Alix von Melle – also a member of the LOWA Pro Team – without bottled oxygen.
Where he really made a name for himself in the mountaineering scene, however, was through his spectacular ski runs down the world’s high mountains. These include Gasherbrum II at 8,035 metres, Nanga Parbat at 8,125 metres, Broad Peak at 8,051 metres, K2 at 8,611 metres, Manaslu at 8,163 metres, Shisha Pangma at 8,027metres and the north face of Pik Lenin at 7,134metres, which he successfully skied down in part or in full.
Alix and Luis give numerous slide shows throughout Germany each year. Their book, “Leidenschaft Leben – Gemeinsam auf die höchsten Berge der Welt” (Living Passion – Conquering the World’s Highest Mountains Together), in which they reported on their shared adventures as a mountain climbing couple, was published in 2015.
Facts & figures
- Home base:
- Officially certified mountain and ski guide
- Favourite climbing site:
- Tannheimer Mountains, Wetterstein
- Local mountain:
- 1,60 m
- 60 kg
What attracted you to mountaineering, and what made you really decide to pursue it?
“I basically had no other choice in the matter – I grew up in an area of Bavaria called Füssener Land, which is located at the foot of the Ammergau Alps. My father is a mountain guide, and my mother is just as addicted to the mountains as he is. Since our days as tots, my brothers, sisters and I have spent our free time scaling mountains, climbing and skiing. Joking aside, I gave all sorts of other sports a try and kept coming back to alpine activities. To me, nothing beats being outdoors in the mountains and in nature.”
How do you shake off your own laziness and do your training?
“By viewing it as a reward and not some form of drudgery. When I have a chance to go for a run in the afternoon after spending all day at the desk, I begin to look forward to it hours ahead of time. Of course, you need the right conditions. If I had to train in a fitness studio, I would tend to view a workout as some sort of punishment. You simply have to find the thing that motivates you. I need nature, the countryside and “the great outdoors”. I certainly also have those days when I’m simply in no mood to get myself in gear. At times like this, I try to reward myself in some other way after I have dutifully gone out and completed my training routine.”
What do you always take along with you on your expeditions? What could you never do without?
“I always need something to read. Reading is a great way to recharge your batteries and think about other things. But mountain-related material is taboo. I could never read a mountaineering book during an expedition. Novels, mysteries or stories that transport me to another world where I will not find any avalanches, rockfalls or crevasses help me to maintain my mental balance.”
What are you particularly thankful for?
“For my parents and my family, people who have never tried to change my mind. I am also really thankful that I met the woman who became my wife, Alix. Without her, things would not be half as much fun.”
How much more do you enjoy life than other people possibly do?
“At some point, I simply decided to take my fate into my own hands and would no longer focus my life on what seems to be responsible, earnest and most promising. I came to this conclusion not been that long ago. At that point, I realised that I had been expending huge amounts of energy on things that I did not really need in life.”
My shoes for…
Expeditions: EXPEDITION 8000 EVO RD
“The perfect shoe for Everest at all! It offers the perfect fit and is robust, extremely warm and light. The ideal companion on the world’s tallest mountains.”