Stefan Glowacz (Germany)

One of the finest climbers of the past twenty years Stefan is one of the biggest names in European climbing and has one of the most significant and enviable ticklists.

Wild country are proud to be associated with such a high calibre climber who can provide feedback on our kit form having used it in some of the harshest environs. Stefan has won competitions, on-sited 8A+, climbed multi-pitch Alpine routes and been on expeditions that would make most mortals recoil....he is a true all-rounder an original and one of the best sponsees a company could want....he also founded his own shoe company, which you may just of heard of, Red Chili, which Wild Country distributes in the UK.

You can see Stefan in action here on The Place Of Happiness in Brazil....

In his own words:

"I couldn`t even walk properly  when my parents took me and my sister hiking in the mountains. From the moment I can remember I was fascinated by the walls in the Dolomites and Swiss Alps. But for a long time I just was standing below them and watched other climbers high up in the walls. I wanted to be the same, I wanted to be up there too. When I was 12 years old I started climbing in a course for beginners and spent after that every second at a small little cliff close to my home town.

The first couple of years I was climbing trad- multipitch routes in the alps in classic style. I had and still have a lot of respect of the mountains and just after 3 years I started freeclimbing. First I tried to freeclimb all the trad routes in the mountains around my home town. But soon I was travelling more and more in the classic sport climbing areas like Frankenjura, Pfalz, Arco or Bouox in southern france. When I finished school I starded a education as a toolmaker. But I was not very ambitions because I just wanted to climb. I started at 7 o`clock in the morning to be finished at 4 o`clock pm to train and climb.

 

The Competition Years

In the year 1985 I won the first sport climbing competition "Sport Roccia" in Bardoneccia in Italy. It was the start of my professional climbing career. I was in the competition circus for 8 years and won a lot of them. Most important was the 3 time victory of the famous Rock Master in Arco, the Wimbledon of sport climbing.

At this time I was travelling with the famous photographer Uli Wiesmeier to the best climbing spots around the world to produce the coffee table book "Rocks around the world". Also I took part in the movie "Scream of stone" from Werner Herzog. I finished my competition career after 8 year with the second place in the world championships in Innsbruck 1993 because I wanted to create my own routes and expeditions.

Bigger And Further Away

My focus was getting back to my roots, to big walls even in very remote areas. In the year 1994 I redpointed the multipitch route "Des Kaisers neue Kleider" in the Austrian alps after 2 years work. This route is still one of the hardest multipitch sportclimbs in the world and graded 5.14a.

After this route I was fascinated of climbing big walls in very remote areas. The goal was, to avoid technical support to get to the walls. We didn`t use planes or helicopters and tried to get there under the aspect "by fair means". In this way we made with canoes the first overland approach to the 'Cirque of the Unclimbables' and climbed a first ascent on Mt. Harrison Smith, "Fitzcarraldo" 5.12, sailed to Antarctica with a 14 meter long sailing boat to climb there the 900 metres high Renard Tower and named the route "Against the wind" 5.12.

With sea kajaks we went in the Edlington Fjord in Baffin Island to climb the unclimbed 'Polar Bear Spire'. Or went with sea kajaks to Greenland to the climb the huge Mt. Tupilak.

The Last Few Seasons

The last 3 years I spent mostly in Patagonia. Together with Robert Jasper I climbed a new fantastic big wall on the remote 1000 metres high pillar on the Cerro Murallòn north face. "Gone with the wind" 5.13 took us three expeditions over 3 years.

For us this is the modern style of big wall climbing in remote areas. We used no bolts in the entire route. These latest adventures will be published in the US magazine 'Alpinist' later this year. Also I finished last year a new book with the title "On The Rocks" as a follow-up to Rocks Around the World...."

 

Stefan can alos be seen here in this cool PsicoBloc film of deepwater soloing in Majorca..