Hi, I am Vibi and I write to you from the heat of the Sinai desert in Egypt, which is far, far away from the cold rugged mountains I love. But who am I, and how did I end up in Egypt? I have so many stories to tell you, but first let me introduce myself
I grew up exploring the hills in the southern part of Norway, always skiing, climbing, diving, mountain biking and trekking. I am educated in emergency response and leadership, and I have a BA in social science and cultural awareness. I have also worked as a mountain guide for several years. I am a mountain climber, expedition guide, adventurer, aid worker and also a military officer in the Norwegian Armed Forces, and I have had voluntary deployments for several “United Nations Peacekeeping Missions” around the globe. Ever since my first job for UN in Lebanon in 1994, I have alternated between working in conflict areas and climbing some of the highest mountains in the world. As some of my friends say: “you go to war zones to earn money for your next crazy mountain project and aid work”. Well, it is a lot of truth in it, but it is also fulfilling to be lucky to do work which I see makes a difference in many people’s life.
And that is what took me to Sinai. Another deployment and preparation for my next mountain project. All my time outside of the climbing expedition and wilderness life preparing for the expedition, is used to work for UN, aid work or work for the Norwegian Armed Forces.
Here in Sinai, I am working as the first Female liaison officer to the peace agreement between Egypt and Israel, back in Norway my job is coach for the “NATO Centre of Excellence Cold Weather Operations”, where I teach students in avalanche forecasting and how to survive, live and thrive in extreme winter conditions.
I have always loved all challenges nature could give me. I was about to skip my education to take advantage of a climbing trip to Mt Blanc in the Alps. And ever since my first expedition across Svalbard in 1993 I have been lucky to participate on several challenging trips around the world.
I have climbed all the 7 Summit Peaks and 4 of the 8000 meter peaks.
Proudest moment from my climbing career would be when I in 2018 guided the first Afghan woman to the top of Afghanistan's highest peak Mt Noshaq 7492m
In 2015 I stayed behind in Nepal and took part in rescue missions in the aftermath of the earthquakes and since then I have combined my expeditions and UN peacekeeping missions with aid work for local organizations, especially focusing on the empowerment of children and women. In that way, all my expeditions and missions have been imbued with a greater goal and deeper meaning. I am still running aid projects in Nepal, Afghanistan, Uganda and South Sudan, some of which I founded.
I have so many stories to tell you. And I will share them with you here. I will tell you about my most amazing climbs, and I will tell you about how I help or see opportunities in the local areas I travel. And as you understand I am a lot out and about; travelling and living abroad, so I will tell you how I manage to maintain my fitness and training while far away from home. I will tell you about my dreams and I will take you with me on my journeys and expeditions.
I hope you will follow!