The climber’s contact with the difficult conditions of the mountain, the struggle to overcome difficulties and climb to the top, solidarity with his companions, the wild beauty of the mountain landscape, mark the essential dimensions of mountaineering. The mountain requires mind and body cooperation. Through the activity of mountaineering, we discover the limitless possibilities hidden within us and slowly discover ourselves. In the icy atmosphere of the mountain, we realize how warm the smile of our companions is and experience the true meaning of cooperation.
Climbing step by step the sharp peaks, somewhere between the sky and the land, somewhere between life and death, the climber lives his greatest thrills. He seeks true adventure, following an exciting liberating path from the phobias of the modern civilized man.
The difficulties we face are not a few, the endless ups and downs, the steep rockface, the icy snow, the vertical ice. The dangers lurking behind these difficulties are also not a few, the storm, the stone fall, the avalanche, the lack of oxygen. The real climber confronts all these difficulties and dangers with calmness, patience and perseverance.
In recent years mountaineering has developed so much that it has acquired various sub-sectors, with some becoming autonomous sports. One of them is rock climbing which is particularly popular. Other areas of mountaineering are alpinism (mountaineering involving rock, ice and mixed field climbing), ice climbing (ice climbing) Himalayanism (ascents to peaks with an altitude of more than 7,000m), mountain skiing (ascent and downhill with snowshoes in the pristine snow of the mountains, away from ski resorts), gorge crossing and, of course, simple walking in the mountains, mountain hiking.
Most members of alpine clubs are mainly engaged in mountain hiking, a gentle activity that brings people close to the beauty of mountainous nature. Mountain hiking is the ascent to a mountain of passable and easy paths, avoiding difficulties and without necessarily having the goal of the highest peak. It concerns ascents to mountains without snow or even simple winter ascents. Mountaineering has many manifestations and each person involves himself with what he really likes and finds fulfilling.
An accomplished climber can move on the mountain comfortably and has complex knowledge and skills. He is a good hiker, a good rock, ice and mixed field climber and a good skier, so he can move comfortably and quickly on the mountain. Above all, the climber must be an excellent connoisseur of the mountain and always act sensibly and calmly.
Proper assessment of the mountain conditions and personal abilities, knowledge and equipment, is crucial to whether we will experience a pleasant adventure on the mountain or get involved in a struggle for survival.
HMGA | Association of Hellenic Mountain Guides