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His Top 100 ice climbs will make many mountaineers dream. But Matthias Scherer is not just any climber: for twenty years he has been tracking down the most beautiful icefalls on the planet, from the Hautes-Alpes to Canada. He has set up his winter base camp in Norway, in Lavangen, where, during the last Arctic Ice Festival, we were able to chat – and climb – with one of the gurus of the ice. Meet one of the prophets of the icefall, who keeps the flame of the ice from Cogne to the Arctic Circle alive. Fascinating.

Alpine Mag : How did your passion for the mountains start?

Matthias Scherer : I owe my passion for mountaineering and Mont Blanc to my mother. She used to travel a lot. In 1953, she traveled by bike from Germany to the North Cape on her own. For a woman in those days, that was huge! She always traveled with us. The first time I came here to Norway was in 1980. I was six years old. We went back to Norway almost every year. My mother was a senior manager for all the Intercontinental hotels in Germany. My father was a professor of statistics at the university. They both did downhill skiing, we used to go to Megeve to ski. I started to have this attraction for Mont Blanc there. In the winter it was a luxury hotel holiday, but in the summer the whole family slept outside, in the Norwegian

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