Born and raised in the flat country of Belgium, Nico guesses he wasn’t meant to be a rock climber. Usually people think he is either crazy or really lucky. It’s probably a bit of both. But these days Nico is rarely ever in his home country and always gone to target some climbing destination around the world. His home is his van. His wife is a mandolin. He does what he loves and commits everything to be able to fully live his passion for rock climbing. Whether it’s a one-move boulder problem, a big wall in alpine environment or a fine tune on his mandolin it’s rock and he loves it all!
Discipline: ClimbingHometown: Brussels, Belgium Currently Living: My van Height: 175 cm
When did you first start climbing/skiing?While mentalling my mother’s belly back in 1980! I made it even though it wasn’t in good condition. It was wet and greasy making it very tough!
What do you most enjoy about your sport?Pushing you limits in climbing is the perfect way to connect deeper with nature.
How do you define success?Drinking a cold beer after a long day of climbing!
What are you most proud of, either in life, your sport or both?I prefer seeing things that are positive in my life as something I am grateful for rather than proud of. I guess what I am most grateful for is my health, my friendships, my freedom and off course my Black Diamond sponsorship :-)
Who are your heroes?Jimi Hendrix and James Brown! They are the best!
What inspires you?People following their ideals and sharing their energy.
What are your hobbies outside of your sport?Music, skiing, surfing and biking.
What’s your guilty pleasure?Fries, beers and peeing in the shower.
What are your hidden talents?Naturism swimming.
Tell us about your most favorite place in the world:Wherever my van is parked at.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?I wanted to be a vet. I liked to cut animals apart. :-)
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be, and why?Give me the chocolate bars on my belly and a bit of muscles on my bone to look better for ladies on the beaches.
Tell us about a time in your life when you have been scared:When I thought about getting a real job! Thankfully that never happened.
Describe your perfect day:It should start with sleeping in until around 10 am. Then opening the door of my van to a warm sun so that I can do an easy transfer from the bed to the stand up position. Then I’ll make some tea and set the breakfast table in the shade with a fresh breeze. After a 2 hour breakfast shared with friends, I would go swimming in a lake and play a bit of guitar with other musicians. Around 2 pm I would then start thinking of going climbing. The climbing would then happen… Mostly warming up in the day light and then sending the projects by night with a full moon to the sound of wild animals. After the last try I would stay with friends for a while watching the moon and then eventually go down, led by the rising hunger. I would then light up a fire with friends and grill some food on it, play some guitar and drink a fresh beer and then go to sleep with my loving girlfriend.