We are so honored to introduce you today, to a man who is truly an inspiration to his peers and fans, not to mention a superb and strong climber, who is dedicated to the sport of climbing.
He inspires people wherever he goes, and no matter what life brings him, he is a true fighter and survivor.
Disciplined, focused and willing to share the health issues he went through are traits that make him a very special climber; his story is very noteworthy.
Michael is a real example of what it means to dedicate your life to climbing, and to never give up.
Editor: Where in Germany are you from, Michael?
Michael Füchsle: I come from Bobingen, which is near Munich.
Editor: How old were you when you developed an interest in climbing?
Who was your first climbing teacher?
Michael Füchsle: I was 12 years old and had no particular climbing instructor, I started with my father Josef Füchsle and then have really learned everything myself. Which was not easy. I had then still very heavy hiking boots.
Editor: Your climbing resume is vast and very impressive.
Can you tell us what the first health setback was that you had?
What happened to you? I think fellow climbers would like to know about your journey.
Michael Füchsle: In 2005, I had an intestinal perforation with blood poisoning and was in a coma for 16 days. When I awoke from the coma, I was paralyzed from the neck down.
After about 6 months of rehab we went back slowly uphill. I could at least go back a few feet. But it would take until 2012 to start with the climbing again. What then no one would have suspected, the doctors said at that time that I would probably never run and would be forever bound to a wheelchair.
But I have recovered about 90% from being severely disabled and have a colostomy (ILEO stoma) and strong Polyneurophatie on the legs and arms and a fistula.
Editor: How are you feeling now, health-wise?
Michael Füchsle: I'm doing physiologically actually quite good. Of course, I have restrictions set by the artificial stoma ILEO and the Polyneurophatie get in the way when climbing, but you really get used to everything and I'm glad I can again climb.
Editor: Is your family supportive of you?
Michael Füchsle: Yes, my family at the time is very supportive as is my girlfriend. I learned to know myself in 2010 and I ever drove forward, I would probably not even have started climbing. Now we visit every weekend together all the different climbing areas which is very nice.
Editor: What is your favorite place to climb back home in Germany?
Michael Füchsle: In Germany, there are many climbing areas are they are very nice, but I am already in Frankenjura or Allgäu.
Editor: I recently interviewed the great Reinhold Messner and he told me something fascinating.
He said “Fame is a help and a trap”.
How do you keep your private life separate from your public side?
Michael Füchsle: True, if one is known, it helps with having sponsors. But it also has disadvantages, there are always envious people, who treat the person by saying that you cannot live from climbing and what you have achieved.
I experience this again and again, right now through my handicap I cannot climb as hard as I used to climb, and then some people do not understand and know why I still have sponsors of course. But I do not care and all my sponsors are pleased with me.
Editor: Which climbers do you find most inspirational?
I ask because each has a particular strength, like you do, which may resonate with fans.
Michael Füchsle: Wolfgang Güllch is still my biggest role model, who died much too soon in a car accident, but what he has already done at that time was impressive to me. Wolfgang had always remained a few years ahead of the others and despite his strong performance he was humble.
Editor: What is your advice to young climbers who look up to you?
Is it your ability to stick with a problem and never give up?
Is it your power of endurance?
Or is it your sense of patience that makes you a strong and balanced climber?
What would you say to them?
Michael Füchsle: I can give all young climbers only the council (advice), slowly increase the workout and just starting out, you should not exaggerate and even if things are not going so well, and never lose heart, because there is a low point for all. Perseverance is the most important.
Editor: Here’s an important question that truly defines a climber.
Why do you climb? What does it give you emotionally?
How has climbing enriched to your life?
Michael Füchsle: For me climbing is next to my girlfriend and family the most important. There is nothing quite as different as climbing in areas of the world with my girlfriend Marion, and friends to visit, in the wild to watch the scenery and to enjoy it. Since heavy climbing routes are almost incidental, although they would naturally be so.
Editor: What are your thoughts on the preservation of nature and climate change?
Michael Füchsle: Climate change is a serious issue, in my opinion for a long time. You see it with all the storms, this has not previously seen. Conservation of Nature should do something as climbing is for the masses become a sport, and when I see how some people act in nature, whether by wegschmeißen (throw trash out) of debris, that gives me the shudder. I cannot understand it.
Editor: Thanks for spending some time with us, Michael. It was great to learn about your climbing triumphs!
You are truly an inspirational climber, brave of heart and strong in spirit. Many blessings to you and to also to Marion for being such a great and loyal support to you.
Please come by and talk with us again, your fans love to hear from you.
Michael Füchsle: I also thank you for the interview and I look forward to the next time.
Sponsors: SALTIC – LACD – Bergans – Climbskin – FIT LIKE – Cube Energy
Editor: Here is some information on how hard Michael has worked to build his career. He is a remarkable climber and we can all learn from his strength.
Michael Füchsle: In 1979, beginning with the climb in Konstein. In the same year, several climbing routes in the Dolomites - Switzerland Germany up to 6 degrees Climax. Piz Palu exceeded Belle Vista in 1 day Bianco ridge, several ski sessions.
1980 - Transition to pure sport climbing, finished school and made the decision to become professional. Made trips to the finals and Monaco on Lake Garda Pfalz-Frankenjura, etc.
1981- Established first routes in -grade 6c.
1982 - 1985 Traveled to Italy, England, France, USA, Bulgaria, Hungary, established several routes up to 8a.
1986 - 1995 Climbed professionally, became editor of several climbing guides, participated in climbing competitions, traveled around the world, and did repeats and first ascents of routes up to 8b-8c in Erstbegebungsversuch of the Eiger, North Face.
1996 - 2004 Established the clothing company Cian and became editor of the journal Climbing On Sight. Traveled some more to different countries.
2004 – Suffered an intestinal perforation and was in a 14 day coma, with paralysis throughout the body, blood poisoning, polyneuropathy, artificial stoma, spent 5 months in rehab, recuperating.
2005 – A statement by the Welfare Office pronounced that I was affected by up to 90% with disabilities.
2005 - 2012 Underwent several operations for fistulas.
Again in 2012, beginning with the training despite the stoma. Polyneuropathy and fistulas February: repeated fistula surgery, January – May, went hiking in the Zillertal, Bavarian Forest, Allgäu. Went bouldering and climbed walls. Went to climb in Konstein. June - Bouldering on the Danube Gorge - Doll Stone - Well Home - Konstein - Delivery Stones - Koenigssee – climbed at different climbing gyms – did mountain tours in Berchtesgaden. July - Climbing to the Gypsy Holes area – climbed in gyms, August – did bouldering at the cave Mauraner - Dolomites: Piz Boe - Holy Cross Lace - Rock Climbing & Bouldering in the Stone City Kaltern: Lavitzspitze - Röhnspitze - Climbing Konstein - Bouldering Rock Sea Odenwald – climbed at the climbing gym Mainz, September - went to Konstein for climbing - Bouldering at the Gypsy Holes – went climbing at the gym Oberpfaffenhofen u Augsburg - bouldering near the old castle - Ascent of the Croda Rossa and Taubenstein – October - Benedicktenwand - Laces Lace - Bouldering in Konstein - climbing walls - Schartschrofen - Gamskopf - Bouldering at Füssner Jöchle.
November - Climbing Arco - Boulder City Pietramurata - Climbing Gyms Augsburg, Ingolstadt and Oberpfaffenhofen December: Participation in the opening of the Bloc Cottage - Climbing Gyms: Ingolstadt, Oberpfaffenhofen, Augsburg - Bouldering in the cave and Mauraner Waldau.
2013 - January: Went climbing at the gyms - Augsburg - Ingolstadt - Oberpfaffenhofen -Munich: Participation in the competition Boulder Plastic Fever, Ingolstadt – Was interviewed by the newspaper Pfaffenhofener Marks Post & Schrobenhausener - TV report INTV February - March: Kletterhallen- Ingolstadt - Augsburg - Munich - Oberpfaffenhofen - Nieder Olm - Bouldering in Width Ford - Doll Stone - Well Home - Arco - Via Ferrata Colodri - King Rock Verona – did a interview for the Ingolstadt newspaper in April, went to the climbing gyms in Augsburg (Bloc Cottage - Sports Gyro) - Ingolstadt - Rock Climbing & Bouldering Greet Roof - Gypsy hole - Konstein - Seltmans - Alpseestrasse - Steinbach Valley - Mai: Climbing Gyms: Thalkirchen - Ingolstadt - Augsburg - Rock Climbing & Bouldering: Konstein - Gypsy hole - Ziegelwies - feet - Beech Forest - Well Home -Klettersteig Hausbach case ( I riding Winkl) - Inn Valley climbing Passau. June: Climbing Gyms: Ingolstadt - Munich - Augsburg - Rock Climbing & Bouldering: Konstein - Frankenjura - Gypsy hole - Well Home - Morsbach Kufstein - Boulder screws in the FIT TC Schrobenhausen July: Climbing Gyms: Augsburg - Ingolstadt - Schrobenhausen: Climbing & Boulder: Hagenacker - Konstein - Powder Cave - Frankenjura - Doll Stone - Gypsy Hole - Ardeche - Ötztal: Via Ferrata Lehner Waterfall, August: Climbing Gyms: Oberpfaffenhofen - Augsburg - Ingolstadt: Rock Climbing & Bouldering: Gypsy Hole - Konstein - Ötztal - Imst - Allgäu: Hiking In September, I gave the exam for Climbing Supervisor: Climbing Gyms: Ingolstadt - Augsburg - Munich Basket: Rock Climbing & Bouldering: Prüferning. Via ferrata: Salewa Iseler - Alpspitze October, more visits to climbing gyms in Ingolstadt - Augsburg (Sports Gyro - Bloc Hut) - Schrobenhausen: Rock Climbing & Bouldering: Sebi - Zillertal: Via Ferrata Huterlaner: Founding of the Onlineshop, Harry Klettershop. November, went to the climbing gyms in Augsburg, Ingolstadt: climbing courses held in Ingolstadt December: more visits to Climbing Gyms: Augsburg - Ingolstadt - Munich: climbing courses Ingolstadt, did a Radio interview with Bayern 3 man parts.
2014 - January: Bloc Hut Augsburg - Augsburg Sports Gyro - Climbing Center Ingolstadt: Routes screw centrifugal sports: climbing courses in Ingolstadt, February: Sports centrifugal Augsburg - climbing center in Ingolstadt - Bloc Hut Augsburg, Audit completed to Climb Rainer - Bouldering Climbing Centre Ingolstadt- Gypsy Hole - Climbing Konstein, March and April: Climbing Centre Ingolstadt - Climbing Konstein - Besse Bach - Morgenbachtal - Nicholas Rock - Eschbacher Cliffs: Bouldering Wellheim - Dollnstein - hook Acker - Felsenmeer Mai: Climbing Gyms: Ingolstadt - High Ost Munich - Sports centrifugal Augsburg - Bloc Cottage - Thalkirchen Augsburg: Climbing Ziegelwies - Konstein - Wörgl - Zillertal - Fürstein - Kaserler Alm June: Climbing Gyms - Zeller Wall - Konstein - Ötztal - Upper Ried - Engleswan - Croatia Rovinj. July: climbing gyms; Climbing and Bouldering in Konstein - Shire - Kleinwalsertal - Scheidegg - Gsperr - Vils - Gypsy Hole – Frankenjura, August: Konstein - Gypsy Hole - Well Home - Mauerner Caves - Frankenjura - Alpspitze Norwand - Kraichen - Lech Valley - September Arco - Konstein - Gypsy Hole - Hagenacker - Well Home - Morsbach - Zeller wall - Reit im Winkl - Nieder-Olm. October - Climbing & Bouldering: Sudelfeld - Auer Wandl - Konstein - Gypsy Hole - High East - Bloc Cottage - Sports Gyro - climbing center in Ingolstadt - Climbing Center Augsburg. November - Climbing and Bouldering: Climbing Center Augsburg - Climbing Center Ingolstadt - Sports Gyro - Turkey Geyikbayiri and Olympos. December- Climbing Gyms in Ingolstadt - Munich – Ingolstadt.
2015 - January-February: climbing halls in Munich - Augsburg - Ingolstadt – Landshut. March - Climbing & Bouldering in Konstein - Ziegeunerloch - Well Home - Hagenacker – Ziegelwies - Climbing Gyms: Augsburg - Munich - Gilching – Ingolstadt. Gave an interview to the American climbing magazine, ClimbSkiBoulderMagazine.com.
Michael’s Facebook page
Michael’s Videos and Interviews:
Interview: Bayern 3 Mensch Theile
ARD Mediathek Interview Michael Füchsle
Interview conducted by Vera Kaikobad L. Ac.
Editor of the Facebook Page: 'An Interview With'.
Editor-in-Chief of ClimbSkiBoulderMagazine.com
Interview © Vera Kaikobad L. Ac.
All images © of the designated photographer and supplied by Michael.
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Cover Date: March 25th, 2015