Alex Txikon beside the Eight-thousand: sustainability and support to the local people

Alex Txikon beside the Eight-thousand: sustainability and support to the local people

Alex Txikon beside the Eight-thousand: sustainability and support to the local people

Alex Txikon beside the Eight-thousand: sustainability and support to the local people.

Over the last past years Alex Txikon stood out not only for his ethical attitude in mountain or for having dealt with the giants of the hearth during the winter, but also for his attention to the environment and to the people who live in the Himalayan area.

In this last winter too, during an expedition to the Manaslu, Alex was true to himself, mixing his expedition with a more important goal. On top of all the expedition supplies, the basque mountaineer has boarded with him a hundred of solar lamps for the Manaslu people. 
Explains Alex:

A lamp for them means a lot
It can change the life of a family
and offer children the chance of studying longer,
it gives them the hope of a better future

Being the first one to climb the Nanga Parbat in winter, on the 26th February 2016, Txikon has always shown an unusual tact in the mountaineering world. A rough looking mountaineer, but kind and detail oriented. Details are very important in making any experience perfect, more important than anything else. “About details” he interrupts us. “About Manaslu, I remember a very funny moment. We were in the high camps and it was the birthday of Chhepal’s son. He phoned him to say happy birthday and he explained why he couldn't be there with him. A very funny moment, but very tender too”.  He laughs remembering those moments at very high altitude, where the air becomes thin and the thoughts fly away with the wind. But the last winter for Alex has not only been about mountains.
Alex, during the last years your expeditions have always taken in special consideration the environment and sustainability. What have you organised for Manaslu?
In first place at the base camp we didn’t use any fuel generator to produce energy and we have worked out with solar panels. We have also managed to get rid of the majority of plastic thanks to a water filtration system that avoided us to bring bottles. And finally, at the end of the expedition all the waste has been taken away.

You have brought with you many solar lamps in this expedition, to whom were addressed?
Exactly, together with Eki Foundation we have offered to the Manaslu valley families 60 solar lamps and even all the solar panels we have used for the expedition. Lamps provided by lithium battery able to be charged both with solar panels and electricity. They lasts 8 hours and let people having light even during the night. For us it’s something so normal, but for these families it is not. A simple lamp can give children the chance to study after the sun is gone.

You brought also some panels in a village in the Makalu region…
Yes, once back we moved towards Seduan where we have installed a little photovoltaic station close to the local hospital and we have brought solar lamps to the children of the local school.

Nepal has been affected by Coronavirus pandemic too, how did you find that?
Pandemic has damaged Nepal so much, but mainly for number of cases. The real problem has been the economic crises, due to the totally resetting of tourism.
I knew I wanted to do something for them with my team. We are a little team, our resources are limited, but we always try to give our support.

Unfortunately the expedition ended without reaching the peak, are you satisfied in any case?

Sometimes it doesn’t depend about your determination but the mountain takes decisions for you. We have almost reached the peak, along a new, nice and technical path. We are all very satisfied, not only for the time we have spent in mountain but specially for giving our little contribution to improve these people life condition’s.

Pics by Phelipe Eizagirre