"simple is the most difficult"
Markus Pucher is a professional mountain and ski guide, who grew up in the Maltatal, a remote valley in Austria’s province of Carinthia. He first laid eyes, hands and ice axes on vertical walls at the tender age of 14 and since then the call of the mountains has not let go of him. Pucher has been climbing numerous peaks in the Alps, Tibet and Patagonia over the last two decades and counts several first ascents, primarily in the Himalayas, amongst his most prominent summit exploits.
Today Pucher is one of the most respected and experienced all-round alpinists worldwide and while his paying customers surely hold his reliability and responsibility, on such harsh terrains as the Eiger and the Matterhorn North Face, in high esteem; he himself likes to push the limits and go even further ‘over the top’.
On January 13th, 2013 he ensured the entrance of his name into the history books of mountaineering when he climbed the infamous Ferrari route on Patagonia’s Cerro Torre free solo (alone and without belays). Later, he stated he felt “perfectly comfortable, as if I belonged up there” while making his way up the icy West face of the Torre with frozen fingers and all alone in a mere three hours and 15 minutes.
He repeated the West face of Cerro Torre via the Ragni in a free solo ascent on 27th of dec.2014 in a raging storm and whiteout conditions.This extraordinary ascent caused an international sensation and admiration.
The Cerro Torre may indeed seem like his second home since his three year stint as a mountain guide for the Red Bull Media House shoot, but Pucher never forgets where he comes from: “The mountains are always a great getaway”, he says, “but the most beautiful thing for me is to return home and see the little, laughing faces of my two daughters. This helps me to keep my feats in perspective.”
Markus Pucher today lives and works, with his family, in Gendorf, Austria.