On Christmas Day 2007, Eneko and his brother Iker completed their mission: "7 Walls, 7 Continents"
Born in the mountainous region of the North Caucaus, between the Black and Caspian seas, Denis has always been at home in the mountains. They have become his life-long inspiration and motivation.
As a child he was always happy to be in the nature, accompanying his father on many hunting and fishing excursions, exploring the hills around him and making his first forays into the mountains with the Tourist Club. With worsening asthma Denis moved with his family to the kinder climate of South Sakhalin. While at high-school, Denis made his first sport climbs from the city of Vladivostok, and joining the alpine club there he started to participate in short expeditions - always trying to find opportunities to feed his love of the mountains.
He emigrated to Kazakhstan, working in the Army during the difficult years of the collapse of the USSR. He continued to climb throughout this troublesome period - seeking refuge in the mountains - always trying to push his level. His achievements continued to snowball.
During the Snow Leopard Project of 1999, Denis achieved international recognition as a world-class alpinist with his outstanding ascents of the five 7000m peaks of CIS (USSR) in 42 days. It was during this project that Denis met Simone Moro; in 2000, they went on expedition together to Everest forging a close friendship and trusted climbing partnership. For Denis this was the start of a love affair with the very highest mountains of the world, and he continued to make many expeditions to the 8000m mountains of Nepal and Pakistan.
Denis has achieved the rare 'Himalayan Crown' climbing each of the fourteen 8000m summits of the world without oxygen. His specialty is opening new routes at extremely high altitudes: South Face of Broad Peak in 2005, North-East Slope of Manaslu in 2006, South-East face of Cho-Oyu in 2009, and during the spring of 2010 Denis soloed a new route on Lhotse from the South Col of Everest. In February 2009, Denis and Simone made the first winter ascent of Makalu (8463m) - fast and light, without oxygen or high altitude Sherpas. Their achievement touched the limits of human endurance.
Denis has received respect, not only for his incredible talent and mastery, but also for his attitude and ethical style. He has sacrificed summits to help other climbers in trouble. Rather than seeking fame, Denis chooses "routes which the soul craves". He gives himself totally with uncompromising commitment. With passion and dedication Denis is devoted to exploring his mountain dreams.
Birthdate: 29th July 1973
Home: Almaty, Kazakhstan and Albino, Italy
Favourite Mountain: Everest-Chomolungma-Sagarmatha because it is the highest; Broad Peak because it was the most difficult of my dreams
Favourite Book: the next that I will write...
Favourite Films: "Groundhog Day" (USA) and "Baron Münchausen" (USSR)
Favourite Food: Fried sheep meat, parmesan cheese, ricotta with jam
Greatest Fear: to not have enough time to realise some of my dreams
How I Relax: hugging my wife, being on a tropical island at the end of the year with a team of Italian friends
Philosophy: to work hard, to be silent, to perceive everything as a 'game'
What inspires you? the beauty of women, sunset over a tropical beach, dreaming about a good future for my children
Word to live by: Life is a chance for action
- "Himalayan Crown" - ascents of all 14 of the world's 8000m summits without oxygen
- four new routes on 8000m summits
- "Snow Leopard" - climbed the 5 7000m peaks of CIS (USSR) in 42 days
- champion alpinism in CIS, Kasakhstan and Kirgizstan
- Best Climber of Kazakhstan, 1998-2009
- Champion of Elbrus (5642m) race, 2006
- Champion of Kazakhstan speed ascent of Amangeldy Peak (3999m), 1997-9, 2001, 2003-5 and 2007
- Champion of speed ascent of Nyrsultan Peak (4376m), 2006 and 2010
- 78 climbs of "top quality" (CIS classification)
- 17 climbs on 6000m peaks
- 15 climbs on 7000m peaks
- 18 climbs on the 8000m peaks
- 36 solo difficult climbs
- 2011 Gasherbrum II (8035m) – First winter ascent
New route in alpine style on the West face of Prjvalskogo Peak (6240m)
New route on North face of Pobeda Peak (7439m)
- 2010 Lhotse (8506m) - new route, solo on W slope of N ridge
Talgar (4973m) - new route on NW face
- 2009 Makalu (8463m) - winter ascent
Cho-Oyu (8201m) - new route, alpine style on SE face
- 2008 Makalu (8463m) - NW slope
Svobodnoy Korei peak (4740) - N face
- 2007 Dhaulagiri (8164m) - NE ridge
K2 (8611m) - NW rib
- 2006 Manaslu (8167m) - new route, alpine style of NE slope
Elbrus (5642m) - winter speed ascent
- 2005 Broad Peak (8047m) - new route, alpine style on SW face
- Piolet d'Or (World), 2009
- Piolet d'Or (Asia) 2011, 2009 and 2006
- Piolet d’Or (Asia) 2012 for lifetime achievements in alpinism
- Eiger Award, 2009