Wasabi Stories vol.106: “Don’t make Excuse for Something You can’t do”


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“Don’t make Excuse for Something You can’t do”

Today’s story teller is an alpinist, [W:Ken Noguchi].

He started the story with a word which gave him strong impression.


“You can do whatever you wish to try to do.”


This is the word that a Japanese male adventurer, [W:Naomi Uemura] told to American children just before he got missing in Mount McKinley.

Noguchi learned to “not give up” from Uemura’s life.



Noguchi went to Japanese school in England from 6th grade to 12th grade, where most of students have parents who work at large companies; therefore, he grew up in the environment that people think going to top university and working at top company are natural.

In Noguchi’s case, his school record was bad and barely able to put him into high school.

One day, he got so irritated and punched his senior, and got suspended from school for a month.

During the suspension, he went back to Japan and happened to find Uemura’s book, “Seishun wo Yama ni Kakete (Lit: Bet Youthful Ardor on Mountain)”, which changed Noguchi’s view of life.


Noguchi’s word

“Surprisingly, Mr. Uemura’s school record was also bad at university, and experienced failing in finding job. But still, he succeeded in reaching the top of Mt. Everest and his adventure in Amazon River. I was impressed by the way of his life. ‘Although I am not good at study, I am going to do something tat nobody can’t to do.’ At that time, I decided to climb mountains.”


This is how he became an alpinist.

The first mountain he climbed was Mt. Fuji in winter.

He repeatedly trained falling on snow; however, he realized that since the ground changed into ice on the way, if he slid, he couldn’t stop.

“I am going to die if I failed here.”

This was the first time he felt “death” so close in his life.


Since then he climbed many mountains and achieved reaching the top of Mt. Everest at his third try in 1999.

And from 2000, he started cleaning activity on Mt. Fuji and Mt. Everest.


The NIKKEI Oct/2/2009  by Ken Noguchi (alpinist)



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