For Conrad Anker, climbing is about the challenge. It’s about getting out to some location deep in the mountains, alone or with a partner, and testing his limits on some of the world’s most extreme terrain. His climbing résumé includes everything from the Himalayas to remote Antarctic peaks.
On Saturday, the acclaimed North Face climber will be making an appearance at the Breckenridge Riverwalk Center as part of The North Face Never Stop Exploring Speaker Series.
Prior to the speaking engagement, The North Face Breckenridge store will host Anker and a limited audience for a VIP meet-and-greet reception.
Known for discovering the body of early Everest explorer George Mallory in 1999 and for three successful summit attempts on the famed peak, Anker said his real interest has little to do with the world’s tallest peaks, like Everest and K2.
He even described climbing Everest as, “like walking up a ski run.”
“Most 8,000 meters (peaks) are more gentle, they don’t have that technical difficulty I like to seek out,” he told the Daily.
Instead it’s the draw to more extreme technical terrain, mixed climbing and vertical walls.
Still, he described finding the remains of the famous British mountaineer, who went missing in 1924, as a life achievement that forever connects him to mountaineering history.
Of his discovery, he said, “I went out looking at a different spot, and it was just luck, basically, and some intuition.”
Anker’s talk Saturday will focus more on technical climbing and his more recent exploits as a part of the first team to successfully climb the Shark’s Fin of India’s 20,700-foot Mount Meru.
It took three attempts between 2003 and 2011 before he and his team accomplished their goal. Anker said that prior to their success, around 15 other expeditions and a total of 30 climbers had attempted the route without success.
His talk Saturday will be about the perseverance and dedication it took to finally accomplish the goal.
The talk at the Riverwalk Center is free to the public, but organizers suggest reserving tickets online in advance; additional space will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Guaranteed seating is available for $8. VIP meet-and-greet passes are available for $20. Proceeds benefit the Breckenridge Outdoor Education Center. The North Face Breckenridge store has also arranged a charity raffle as part of the event.
More information is available at www.northface.com/speakerseries.