My love for the "great outdoors" started in my youth, when my parents took me to the European Alps. Like many other families, my parents, sister and I went for hikes in the mountains. My sister thought this was a boring thing to do and my mother got exhausted by to long hikes. So, many times, my father and I went alone into the mountains.
Graduately, these hikes got steeper, longer and higher, until we reached a level that you can not do any more difficult routes without having real mountaineering equipment. After a while, I decided to start with mountaineering courses at the NKBV (The Dutch Climbing Association). And I loved it! These days, there is nothing that I love more than being out in the mountains...
Battle of a climber...
My trips to the mountains are something that I look forward to, all year around. It is just simply great to be in deserted places. You forget about all the things that bother you in your every day life. You just get back to the essence of life: waking up, do the thing you love most, soak up the energy of the surroundings, take care of your food, get some shelter for the night and sleep. Simple huh? It really makes you wonder why you need all the every day luxury (but you do appreciate it even more when you are back home). And it is great sports: you set yourself a goal and you try to accomplish you mission. That might not be easy, because the route to the top can change every moment. Isn't that the same in everyday life? But much more intense out there...
Well, in order to be able to go to these extreme places and soak up the energy, you need to be able to spend a lot of energy. So, you have to be fit. Therefore I spend quite some time training. I do a couple of sports. One of them is wall climbing. Usually I do this together with Boris in an artificial climbing (indoor/outdoor) centre in The Hague on Monday night. It is a fun thing to do, good training for your moves and balance, though I am not the most talented technical climber... Another sport that I do quite often (together with Boris or alone) is biking. In the evening or in the weekend we go the dunes north of The Hague and take the bike off road. It is a good rush to go with 40 km/h over a sand path! When I do not have the time to go biking for a couple of hours, I go running. Normally I go run to the town of Delft and back. On my way back I run along one of those Dutch channels. Lovely! Especially on a Saturday or Sunday, then there are a lot of people rowing over there! That brings us to my latest sport: since March I row for the team of the Hogeschool Holland. It is not the usually skiff rowing, but rowing with 10 people in a seaworthy boat. The boat we row in, is build after a whaler boat from the 19th century and is one of the fastest whalers is the Netherlands. It is a really good training. It is long and exhausting and can actually be boring. Great mental and physical training! And is fun to go to a pub with the team after the training of course...
Links in the following overview point to the peak list, photoshow or the expedition page.
|Alps 2003||Breithorn Schwarzfluh (Roccia Nera)||S-route||4.075m||summit||4||05-09-2003|
|Berg Lenin 2002||Berg Lenin||NW-ridge||7.134m||5.400m||2||01-09-2002|
|Alps 2002||Piz Bernina||Bianco ridge||4.049m||2.700m||2||15-04-2002|
|Bolivia 2001||Huayna Potosi||E-wall, French route||6.088m||5.500m||2||20-07-2001|
|Elbrus 2000||Mount Elbrus||SW-route||5.642m||summit||3||27-07-2000|