Norrdine Nouar after Annapurna summit success: “I’m still in the eight-thousander learning phase”

Norrdine Nouar on the summit of Annapurna I
Norrdine Nouar on the summit of Annapurna I

Norrdine Nouar has scaled his second eight-thousander without bottled oxygen. Last Sunday (14 April), the 36-year-old German mountaineer stood on the 8,091-meter-high summit of Annapurna I in western Nepal. In spring 2023, Nouar had already scaled the 8,516-meter-high Lhotse. Norrdine did not join any large teams on either occasion, but went it alone – on the normal routes, which were secured with fixed ropes by the commercial teams.

Nouar was a late bloomer when it came to mountaineering. Neither his family nor his friends were drawn to the mountains. He is the son of a native Algerian who came to the former GDR as a guest worker and met his future German wife there. Norrine grew up in the southern German state of Franconia, studied International Technology Management and spent his free time playing computer games rather than going out into nature.

So why did the mountain fever take hold of him at some point? “Ever since I can remember, I have been driven by an insatiable curiosity, a thirst for adventure and the constant urge to take on a new challenge,” Norrdine writes on his website. “I couldn’t help but opt for an uncertain adventure. So I went to the mountains, albeit late.” He reached his first summit at the age of 23. He later climbed four-thousand-metre peaks in the Alps, in the High Atlas in Morocco and also high mountains in the Caucasus and other mountain regions around the world. Nouar has stood on the summits of Mont Blanc, Elbrus and Kilimanjaro, among others. He lives in the municipality of Oberstaufen in the Bavarion region of Allgäu.

After his summit success on Annapurna, Norrdine, currently in Kathmandu, answered my questions.

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