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Apr 5, 2023

Babsi Vigl’s pursuits in the mountains transcend summit aspirations and self-indulgence.  

The Austrian alpinist, guide and writer embarked on her first expedition at age 20. Since that time she has experienced many highs and lows, from climbing Cerro Chalten as part of an all-women ascent of the Supercanaleta, to surviving a sudden, life-threatening illness while on a trip in the Alps. 

The mountains had always been her safe haven—a place where she says she was never afraid. During a long rehabilitation from her illness, she realized that reaching the summit is just one step of the journey, and what's most important to her is making it home to the people she loves.  

She needed to rediscover balance in her life, and make peace with the mountains, as she wrote about in Alpinist 79. In this conversation, we found Babsi at home in Austria, where she also shared her thoughts on being part of all-female climbing teams and finding parallels between alpinism and playing piano. 

This episode is brought to you by Rab Equipment

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Host: Abbey Collins

Guest: Babsi Vigl

Producer + Engineer: Mike Horn

Portrait by Andreas Vigl

Monte Viso photo by Hannes Mair