George Livanos, a great alpinist who was born in Marseille of France with a Greek father and grandfather.
A Pure amateur mountaineer, he put more than 25,000 pitons, opened 500 routes in the historical and magical place of Les Calanques of Marseille, 40 in the Dolomites, a score in the Alps and repeated many major routes in the Alps and Dolomites.
Many of the great names of Alpinism Jean Franco, Maurice Herzog, Lionel Terray, Gaston Rébuffat, Jean Couzy, Michel Vaucher, Claudio Barbier, not to mention his Italian friends such as Gino Soldà, Armando da Roit, Beppi de Franchesch, Marcello Bonafede, Menegus, Stenico were some of his climbing partners, especially when they came in the Callanques.
‘’ Le Grec’’ – The Greek as they called him in France wanted to go further, he had a vision for climbing. Les Callanques was for him a stepping stone, his playground to go further and prepare him for the mountains and for the big walls.
Until 1956, Robert Gabriel will be his rope mate in a great number of first ascents in the breathtaking walls in the North of Italy, then, besides Marc Vaucher and Roger Lepage who will climb with him until he stopped, his wife, Sonia, will be his ideal partner, always ready to follow him on the 1200 meters of rocks on the North face of the Civetta or on the Grand dièdre of the Cima Su Alto.
Very proud for his origin and his contribution to the climbing community! Very inspiring to see back that time how taught and creative climbers and alpinists where. Very happy to have the opportunity to climb some of the historical ones in Les Callanques.