The final act of the 2016 UIAA General Assembly was the awarding of UIAA honorary membership to Reinhold Messner. Brixen-born Messner was recognized by the UIAA for his legendary feats in the world of mountaineering, including his status as both the first man to climb all fourteen of the world’s 8,000m peaks and as the first climber to document a solo ascent of Mount Everest without supplemental oxygen. A feat which many believed to be impossible. Throughout his life, Mr Messner, who chooses to climb alone and without the support of artificial means, has always challenge the perceived limits of what is possible. These are just some of the incredible achievements of Mr Messner throughout a career which has seen over 3,000 climbs, many on new routes.
Mr Messner, a climber, writer and photographer and one-time member of the European parliament, was also recognized for his commitment to sharing his adventures and passion for the mountain environment, which includes his numerous works of literature and foundation of six museums dedicated to art, culture, religion and peculiarities of mountain regions throughout the world.
“Mr Messner is a true pioneer and an individual who has pushed the boundaries of mountaineering, setting new standards for future generations by challenging the perceived limits of what is possible,” explained UIAA President Frits Vrijlandt. “An individual who has climbed throughout the world, and on many new routes, Mr Messner is the global ambassador for climbing and mountaineering.”