Video Interview Adrian Ballinger, Alpenglow, on his Makalu Record Ski Descent

The world’s fifth-highest at 27,765 feet (8,463 meters), Makalu saw multiple successes this season. Still, on Monday, May 9, 2022, Adrian Ballinger, co-founder of Alpenglow, texted me, “I summited today with Dorji Sonam and Pasang Sona (Alpenglow Sherpa). We fixed to the summit from where rope fixing ended by French couloir. And….I skied Makalu!!!!!! I just got back to ABC. First on top for the season. Alpenglow pride”

He walks through the climb, discussing how the Sherpas fixed the summit ropes, poor weather at times, or narrow windows of opportunity. I asked him to discuss his “ski technique” for those listeners who are avid skiers. As he was making his way down 8,000 feet of snow and ice, plus a rock gulley or two, he passed climbers going up—what fun.

Finally, we wrap up with a short discussion about how high-altitude mountaineering is changing, especially on those ‘other’ 8000ers like Kanchnugua, Dhaulagiri, Makalu, and Annapurna.

Climb On!


Memories are Everything

Makalu courtesy of Adrian Ballinger

Interview with Adrian Ballinger, Alpenglow Expeditions


Climb On!
Memories are Everything

The Himalayan Database Needs Your Help

If you climbed this spring 2022 season and hadn’t already registered to with the HDB, please use this QR code to register so your climb can be counted.


Please register your climb with this QR code

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2 thoughts on “Video Interview Adrian Ballinger, Alpenglow, on his Makalu Record Ski Descent

  1. Hi Alan, I absolutely love your interviews. I always feel like I’m listening to a conversation between two close friends. Your Everest coverage is the best in the biz, and I’m so grateful to you for using your time, energy, love, and resources to educate us about these high altitude adventures.

    1. Thank you for such a thoughtful comment. I’m glad we come across this way. While there are challenges and different viewpoints in mountaineering, I believe just talking openly and listening with care for s the best approach. Also, I love these guys and our sport.

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