Icelab

Alpine style

By Michael Honey28 Apr 2011

When Reinhold Messner climbed Everest, he did it ‘alpine style’, with minimal equipment and support, as opposed to the hitherto prevailing 'expedition style’, which sacrificed speed, agility, and beauty in favour of extensive preparation, exhaustive planning, masses of equipment and people to carry it.

Expedition style works: with enough fixed ropes, porters, money and time, even a minimally fit person can be dragged to the top – but it lacks grace.

Messner’s preferred route was different, too. Imagining a drop of water trickling down from the summit, he sought to take the most direct path up the mountain.

Similarly, at Icelab, we adopt a leaner approach, one that takes more skill and more commitment, but whose rewards are faster, better, more graceful, more elegant, more beautiful work. More risky too – but that’s where the skill comes in.

Note: Messner might have travelled light, but he still packed two chapsticks. Priorities!

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