I caught up with Jost Kobuschh and congratulated him on a fine effort. In review, he was attempting a winter, solo Everest climb on the rarely attempted West Ridge without supplemental oxygen and no Sherpa support. This exact style and the route had never been attempted or accomplished.
The German alpinist tagged his high point at 7,329-meters/23,750-feet. He said before starting the expedition, he would be pleased to tag 8,000-meters so he got close. Well done by any measure.
I asked him three questions and he generously replied:
1. Overall, how are you feeling – physically and emotionally?
Emotionally its this time where you realize that the project is over for now and that there will be something else guiding your life – its a bit of relief from the suffering but also a kind of grief about it being over. Physically I went for a trail run yesterday morning and it just feels amazing to go back to training but my ankle is still stiff and I do physiotherapy right now – my stomach issues haven’t disappeared and i will have further investigation on that as soon as I’m back to germany
2. What was the biggest surprise on Everest?
The huge variation of weather patterns that occur and the temperate differences during the season – there have been days where we literally had flowing rivers in the basecamp – climate change?
3. What would you do differently on your next attempt?
That remains my secret so far – I’m afraid with all I’ve learned just anybody could complete my project hahahaha
And he added:
For me Alpinism is about exploration – being curios and to enhance the personal map of the world – that’s what I came for and I’m really happy that I can live mountaineering based on my personal values the way I do – I’m just really grateful for the beautiful experiences I’ve made
You can see his route on this excellent map from 3D Reality Maps.
I am very pleased that young climbers like Jost are pushing the envelope. using their imagination and showing good judgment of when to turn back. He exemplifies the characteristics that will keep alpinist challenged for the next generation.
Memories are Everything