Holzer was born blind – but still master’s difficult climbing routes. His motto:
Seeing is overrated. At the age of 9, his parents took him to a “real” mountain, the
Spitzkofel in Eastern Tirol. Ever since that time, Andy Holzer developed a huge
passion for mountaineering.
His current project is to climb the seven highest
peaks of the continents, the “Seven Summits” of which to date he has achieved
Holzer says if one of the five senses does not work, the other four have to be
more precise. Holzer orientates himself on the sound of the footsteps of his
fellow hikers and emits certain sounds to detect the echo, to define his
environment. If Holzer is hanging on a cliff, he sometimes throws a hand full of
sand out. "Every single grain that bounces on somewhere, reflects a sound and I
can calculate distance and height difference. So I can create a picture of my
environment that has as many pixels as I have thrown sand," said the Austrian.
Based on this passion, Andy Holzer does first ascents of climbing routes, ski
touring, and expeditions and is about to achieve his dream of climbing the seven
highest peaks of the continents. In 2007 he was the winner of Life Award in the
Andy Holzer (as of 2012) has summited six of the Seven Summits, the highest
mountains of each of the seven continents climbed.
In 1994, Holzer led the first major climb, the direct ascent of the Laserz-West
edge (knacker crack), the south ramp of the Red Tower or the Alps diamond
fireplace in the Lienz Dolomites by. A year later came the ascent of the Ortler .
Holzer in 1997 rose for the first time the north face of high rebuke in the Lienz. Dolomites, the third highest in the wall with its 1300 meters wall height Eastern
In the summer of 2004
The team of South Tyrol today produced a film about Holzer on the ascent of the
Yellow edge (South Rim, Spigolo Giallo). On August 15, 2004 Holzer climbed in
just nine hours the north wall of the Cima Grande as the first blind person ever.
On 13 June 2006, the ascent was made of Elbrus (5642 m) in the Caucasus in
Russia and then the partial exit with skis . A month later, on 28 July 2006, the
managed roped Andy Holzer and Erik Weihenmayer are probably the first
commission of an extreme climb (Red Tower, V +, Lienz Dolomites) in alpine
terrain "double-blind" by a rope team. On 8 November 2006 Holzer climbed for
the first time the Vienna Danube Tower (150 meters) as part of a fundraiser
initiative light into the darkness with the handkerchief brand pace , in January
2007, then the 6962 m high Aconcagua .
On April 2, 2014 Andy Holzer left for Nepal. His goal being Mt Everest . "Even as a
teenager Everest was a big dream of his. The chance that I feel now, I want to use
it, "Holzer said in a recent interview. After Erik Weihenmayer Holzer he would
have been the second blind person on top of the highest mountain in the world.
Due to an avalanche accident he broke the ascent on April 26, 2014 but intends
to return in the near future.
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