Born in the shadow of the Matterhorn to a family of mountaineers, Hervé is one of the world's most accomplished and respected alpinists. A love of the mountains is buried in his DNA (he is the fourth generation of his family to work as a mountain guide) but what really motivates him is the search for the unknown. He is fuelled by a desire to discover places nobody has been to before and by a determination to explore the limits of what is possible.
Birthdate: December 21st, 1977
Hometown: Valtournenche, Italy
Homebase: Valtournenche, Italy
Favourite Book: Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts
Favourite Movie: "La vita è bella” di Roberto Benigni.
Favourite Song: I’ve Got A Feeling - The Beatles
Favourite Food: Spaghetti - I'm really a 100% Italian boy!
Biggest Dream: Spending 365 consecutive days doing mountaineering/outdoor activity
Best advice ever received: We have only one life, let's make it memorable
What inspires me? Albert Frederick Mummery (1855-1895) “The true mountaineer is the man who attempts new ascents, and equally, whether he succeeds or fails, delights in the fun and joy of the struggle.” Valentino Rossi: “To win is not a matter of age, but a matter of willpower.”
Words to live by: Emotion, dream, fear, joy, family, reality, friends, success, failure.
I don’t leave home without my …. The North Face Summit L3 Down Jacket
As a child he preferred descending mountains to climbing them, competing in downhill and alpine ski races until a bad accident at the age of 16 left him with knee injuries that threatened his future ambitions. But when his father took him to climb the Matterhorn, the experience changed his life forever and he committed himself to a life of exploration.
He is now a true master of mountaineering, embracing the fear of first solo ascents, the technical challenges of new routes, and the risks of winter climbs. His favourite expeditions include his first solo ascent of the Matterhorn South Directissima, the first ascent of Cerro Piergiorgio west face and the establishment of a new route on Cerro San Lorenzo, both in Patagonia, and the first ascent of Beka Brakai Chhok in Pakistan. Above all he cherishes the memory of creating a new route, the Barmasse Couloir, with his father, Marco, on the south face of the Matterhorn in 2010. He believes the mountain is not a theatre of heroic deeds, but a place where you can experience great emotions through honest confrontation with nature. As he says, you don’t conquer mountains, they decide to make themselves known.
Hervé's passion has taken him on global adventures from Patagonia to Pakistan and his stories have been shared in his popular book ‘In The Mountains’, his movies ‘The Continuous Line’ and ‘Not So Far Away’, and at business conferences worldwide. His next goal is to take on new challenges in high-altitude locations, to open new routes on 8000m peaks, and to complete projects which others think impossible. He is particularly keen to revive the spirit of ‘classic alpinism’ evoked by Walter Bonatti and Reinhold Messner, pushing the limits of mountaineering with pure and ambitious expeditions. The great Messner has said of him: “Some time ago I said that mountaineering had failed, but today I say no, that’s not true, because there are young people like Hervé Barmasse. The young like him defend the true values of traditional mountaineering.”