When Tamara Lunger was a teenager, she announced her dream of climbing an 8,000-meter peak. In 2010, at just 23, she became the youngest woman to summit Lhotse in the Nepalese Himalayas – the fourth tallest peak in the world. The award-winning mountaineer continues to push the boundaries of what is possible.
What’s been your biggest achievement in life? Or last week?
For sure it was the Nanga Parbat winter expedition in 2016. Even though I turned around 70 meters before the summit and had a bad accident on my descent, this experience added something new and beautiful to my life. I started to meditate a lot. I asked myself many questions about life, about my future and values. Day by day, more and more, I became the person I wanted to be.
What drives you to keep on getting out there time after time, to do more, to experience more?
It’s this: there’s always more to learn about myself. There’s nothing more beautiful than discovering who I am in the mountains, observing myself in a very honest and precise way. Even though I'm getting older, my experience is getting better. The further I go, the more addicted I feel to the mountains’ purity and wildness.
Why do you use GORE-TEX gear?
Reputation. GORE-TEX gear has a great one. Choosing climbing gear is a bit like choosing a climbing partner. You want them to be reliable, experienced, there for you. No matter what. To make things easier on you when it gets tough. You’ve got to be always ready. And to be honest, ever since I’ve been mountaineering, it has been my dream to be part of the GORE-TEX team. I really love what the community stands for!
In ten words or less, what would you say you’re “made for”?
I’m made for moving in nature and high altitudes. And pushing limits.
I love running in the wind. It makes me feel alive and full of power. Sometimes, it tries to push me back, hard, but I move against it. If the wind is out of control that day, my GORE-TEX jacket keeps me protected. No matter how hard I’m pushing myself, or during breaks, I’m ready for what comes next. Forest paths, mountain trails, seawalls. I can take it just about anywhere—and it’s my style. I even wear it when I’m not training.
- Summited the 3,003m Gora Pobeda with Simone Moro, described as possibly the coldest mountain on the planet.
- Opened up a new mountaineering route on Island Peak during an attempt to climb Manaslu in Nepal. Elevation: 6,182m.
- Climbed Nanga Parbat in Pakistan, also known as “Killer Mountain.” 70 meters (300 feet) below the summit, she turned back to not put her partners at risk. Elevation: 8,126m.
- Second Italian woman to summit K2, also known as “Savage Mountain” on the Pakistan / China Border without using oxygen. Elevation: 8,611m.
- Winner of the GORE-TEX Transalpine-Run, an eight-day race across Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Italy.
- Youngest woman to summit Lhotse in the Nepalese Himalayas. Elevation: 8, 516m.