past event
Around the Institute

Murdock Mind, Body, Spirit Series | Mountain vs. Human Nature: Sustaining Alpinism as a Way of Life

Featuring Italian high-altitude mountaineer, rock climber, and adventurer Reinhold Messner, in conversation with rock climber, BASE jumper, and wingsuit flyer Steph Davis. The conversation will explore the confrontation between mountain and human nature and will share Messner’s quest for protecting the ideals of traditional alpinism.
Live event, Paepcke Auditorium

Fee: $30. Tickets on sale now at, or in person at the Wheeler Opera House box office.

Parking is very limited. Please carpool, walk, bike, or ride RFTA.


Widely considered one of the greatest mountaineers of all time, South Tyrolean Reinhold Messner is renowned for his pioneering and difficult ascents of the world’s highest peaks and has repeatedly pushed boundaries as a rock climber, high-altitude mountaineer, and adventurer. In 1978, he and fellow climber Peter Habeler became the first to reach the summit of Mount Everest (29,035 feet) without supplemental oxygen. In 1980, Messner became the first person to solo Everest, also without oxygen. In addition, he was the first to climb all 14 of the world’s peaks measuring more than 26,250 feet (8,000 meters).

Having established difficult first ascents around the world, Steph Davis’ resume of climbing achievements spans 25 years. She was the first woman to free climb the Salathe Wall on El Capitan, and the second woman to free climb El Cap in under 24 hours. Steph is the most accomplished female free soloist in the world and is also one of world’s top wingsuit base jumpers. She is one of just a few people in the world, and the only woman, combining free solo climbing with base jumping. Steph is based in Moab, Utah.



Event information
Wed Nov 23, 2022
5:00pm - 6:00pm EDT
Paepcke Auditorium
1000 N. Third St.
Aspen, CO