In memoriam Kiss Péter

I met Peti at the age of 16, at that time we were both obsessed performance hikers. I still can remember the memory trail of Zsolt Farkas in the year 2003. At that year because of the deep snow only few of us could complete the trail, including Peti and me. When you have the most demanding trips done you have to look for some more challenge.

Peti a Leány-barlang bejáratánál (2005)

Peti a Leány-barlang bejáratánál (2005)

< Peti at the entrance of cave Leány (2005)

The next challenge I found is speleology and I also involved the then 18-year-old Peti. He had the same enthusiasm to explore the caves than hiking the endless miles before. We broke down  the giant debris of Kőzuhatag (Rock falls) pit in Cave Szent Özséb by joint forces but for example he carried the steel door to close the Cave Tüskés or he lugged a quintal of gravel in the outcorp of Csévi cliff to close the Cave Indikációs.

He picked up the rope techniques quickly, he even tried some highscaler jobs. He focused on the caves of the mountains Bükk, where with my friend, Péter Sűrű alias Szifon, they expanded several caves. There are not many of cavers who doesn’t  consider the difficulties of speleology like mud, water or frost as necessary evil but who contrary likes them and is looking for them. Peti belonged to this group and his attitude was also reflected by his performance. He worked on the cave Sebes, they dug through the sump of cave Spejzi and also they made it possible to enter to the branch Búvár (Diver) of cave Létrási in March of 2007.

Jégsztalagmitok a Leány-barlang bejáratánál

Jégsztalagmitok a Leány-barlang bejáratánál

< Ice stalagmites at the entrance of cave Leány

After a debate our previously fruitful relation got broken. Accepting a former apprentice as superior also contributed to our disjunction.

In August of 2007 he joined the group of József Zih (Gemanata) at Pádis via Szifon. Later he became a stalwart of expeditions to caves V5 and R12. Also with Gemanata and Lénárd Szabó (Leó) they went to Canin to participate in several discovery expeditions in the caves Bartók, Zeppelin and Sisma. The mountaineer environment, the winter, the thousand meters deep caves, the week-long expeditions and hundred meter tall pits were challenges he was looking for. He found partners of his own level who didn’t limit him but founded his reputation. He wasn’t boastful at all still everyone knew him.

While he was looking for his limits he eventually learned that sometimes caves can be more powerful than expected. He and Losi, they were in such kind of part of a cave that can be flooded in whole section. The warmness of spring and rain made the snow melt, the sump got closed and it was stated that they have no chance to escape, only a miracle can save their souls. Two days later the water stream dwindled, the sump opened and the two guys came out unharmed, the miracle happened.

Years later I wanted to travel to Canin with Peti not only to discover it for myself but to clarify our personal issues, too. We haven’t met for five years and I was prepared to accept his professional superiority. We agreed on a four-man expedition for this year’s January but then because of my pressing duties I had to postpone it. “No problem, maybe next time.” – He answered during the call but this was our last conversation, there won’t be any next time.

None of his fascinating trips he boasted of and I think only the extensive campaign of Zsolt Erőss revealed that he is preparing for Himalaya. When the news came about their accident we hoped in a miracle since his previous experiences. Every technical advance and the wish of thousand friends were futile, he is lost. Life goes on, the giant poster portraying a snow leopard at the bridge Margit in Budapest was lit by the sun in the same way next day.

Long time ago, when people believed in god, death was part of life. Nowadays we are afraid to face death. A frequent phrase you can hear related to accidents is that why did he go there, why did he ask for trouble? He went there because he needed to go. If he hadn’t gone there then would he has died truly. You can die even if you stay alive but your glow is gone.

May perpetual light shine upon him!


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