Name: Shinji Tamura
Profession: Travel Agent, Expedition Guide, Photographer
In this profession since: 1989
Company: Active Mountain Tamura & Co.
7 questions for Shinji Tamura
Tell us about your job!
I mostly organise hiking, skiing, sightseeing and mountaineering expeditions around Zermatt for Japanese tourists. Having worked with adventure skier from Japan, I also organize ski trips and work as a ski guide in Japan, and I organise some expeditions in the Himalayan mountains. By request, I also work as a photographer.
What makes you love your job?
I simply like to work outside! Travelling is always exciting, there’s always something to discover.
What’s your next big project?
I have planned to climb an unclimbed 6000m mountain in Pakistan in May next year. I have tried to go in June 2021, but unfortunately we did not reach the summit. The day we tried to go all the way for the summit there was simply too much snow, and it was getting slightly dangerous in regards to potential avalanches so we decided to come down.
However, we’d really like to try again. The local people call it “Bondit Peak” but until now, there’s no official name for the mountain. The area does not have an accurate map like we have them in Switzerland. Additionally, we had to find out the online map is not accurate enough to use for navigation, so we must go up on ourselves and constantly look for a way to climb. That’s tiring but fun! There are still a lot of unknown mountains in Pakistan – I will also climb another one with a Japanese client who has lots of experience on the continent.
Why live in Zermatt?
Here in Zermatt, I can go skiing and climbing all year around. There’s so many mountains to climb! Also, living here allows me to work with tourists, and I’m able to learn from local mountain guides.
How does your free time look like?
I mostly spend my time skiing, climbing, mountaineering, hiking or scuba diving. I normally don’t have much free time. I’m working almost 7 days a week during the season – and when I got time for myself, I go up some mountains or spend time at the sea with my family.
What insider tip do you have for visitors to Zermatt?
If you are a mountaineer, but have little experience in mountaineering, I recommend that you don’t overdo it and climb with a local guide. The mountains around here are very high and sometimes difficult to climb!
For me, Zermatt is…
…my second home. I spent over 30 years living in Zermatt by now.