Claudio, the mountaineer

Claudio Kerschbaumer has the love of adventure in his DNA. “As a child I lived on a mountain farm, I milked cows and worked as a cowherd, and my love of nature was certainly born over those years. But you can never escape from your animals, you have to be there every day, and I wanted to explore the world.” So at 16 years Claudio set off, destination planet Earth. He made dozens of mountaineering ascents across the Alpine chain, many climbing solo. In 1991 he travelled 15000 km by bicycle, from Alaska to Patagonia, along the way climbing the highest peaks in each state he passed through. The vicissitudes of life finally brought him to Dolomiti Paganella. Today he works as an Alpine Guide and introduces this little corner of the world to those who arrive from far and wide.

“I love the friendships that develop with the people I accompany,” says Claudio. “When you live an adventure together it is inevitable that you quickly develop ties.” But the true task of an Alpine Guide is, obviously, to show the way, and today Claudio sees this role as more important than ever.

“i WANT PEOPLE TO take home the memories and emotions of a genuine, real-life experience.”

“I realize that increasingly more people do not have a direct relationship with nature. Maybe they see photographs of panoramas and landscapes on Instagram and they dream of being able to see them in real life. At the same time, if they have never been in the mountains they can feel intimidated, afraid of getting lost. They might not know what to put in their rucksack, or they might not have anyone to go with. The Alpine Guide lends you a hand and gives you the possibility to foray into this marvellous world, to explore and experience it.”

“The Paganella is an ideal playground for those who want to approach the outdoors”

Claudio knows the Paganella well and he often accompanies people who are experiencing the mountain for the first time. To explore its marvels it is not necessary to go on extremely long and demanding excursions: “When I accompany people just along the Sentiero delle Aquile, they are thrilled. The landscape, the huge cliffs, and the views over the valleys below make a strong impression on everyone.” For those in search of adrenaline who already have some experience, there are no lack of options. “In just half a day you can do the Ferrata delle Aquile, a route with sections of medium difficulty, Tibetan bridges, spiral stairways, and a spectacular view over the Valle dell’Adige and the Valle dei Laghi.”

“My mountaineering heart remains true to the Brenta”

“The Dolomites are the Dolomites, unique in the world: every path and mountain ledge bring incredible views,” says Claudio. “I always recommend an excursion into the Dolomites to fully experience the mountains. My favourite area is around Malga Spora: it is less popular with tourists and it ensures you a tranquillity that sometimes is missing in other areas. I like people but I also love the solitude and silence of nature.”

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