When I told people that I was going to meet a K2 climber, many of them told me I should ask you, what's wrong with you? What is the difference between you and us, who think everyday adventures are enough?
I answered: all human beings are more or less crazy on one level or another. Those in Sweden who think I put myself in great danger have not seen the world. What I do is relatively safe compared to the struggle for survival that many people in the world are fighting for every day.
I believe that "normal" is an excuse for being lazy because striving for normal just going to give you mediocre results. I never wanted to be normal; I strive to be exceptional. But mentioning this in "the land of normal" - Sweden is like screaming "I'm an atheist" in the rural USA. I sometimes feel as awkward as Crocodile Dundee in New York City because society was never built for adventurers. Nature is.
When I tried to climb K2 back in 2008, 11 climbers died in one of the worst catastrophes in climbing history. I then said: "Never again!". The trauma from the tragic climb in 2008 has haunted me over the years. It has been hard to make peace and move on. Since then, I have been on eleven 8000-m expeditions, working as an assistant researcher for the project Triple ED (http://tripleed.com/) - decision making in extreme environments - and deliberately and systematically worked harder to become better at what I do. I'm passion-driven because my love for the mountains is not only goal-oriented. Mountains are my life, and I love what I do. While some argue, "I rather live one day as a tiger than 100 years as a sheep," I strive to find a balance between those two extremes. One does not have to exclude the other.
I'm not giving up my dream. I'm going back to K2. I did not come this far just to come this far. And when I return, hopefully after a successful climb to the summit, I will auction out my ice axes in favor of the Red Cross's precious work in Pakistan. Because helping others is the true meaning of life.
During my 1,5 months expedition, you can follow my progress and my struggle higher and higher on K2 on social media. I will share, among other things, my thoughts on risk-taking, decision-making, health, nutrition, mental training, happiness, culture, life, death, meditation, technology, relationships, what makes a strong team, and what I think will bring peace to the world.
I'm especially thankful for my sponsors for making my dream come true. Thank you to SIGMA, La Sportiva, Petz, C2 Safety, and Marmot. I also want to thank my parents for understanding and supporting me in my endeavor, and I thank my friends who I inspire and who inspire me.
Departure from Sweden late June 2019
Summit push: last of July 2019
Pierre Näsman pierre.nasman(a)gmail.com