If you like to live adventures and enjoy taking risks, you probably already know the exploits of Jesús Calleja: a Spanish mountaineer, adventurer, naturalist and presenter characterized by his strong personality and passion for living memorable experiences .
Jesús Calleja presents the program called Planeta Calleja which is already a success on television. The program broadcast on Cuatro is an intensity bomb for its viewers since it mixes the intensity of a challenge like climbing a mountain, with an interview in which Calleja's ability as a journalist plays an important role. The adrenaline that sports generates often makes it less difficult for us to bring out our most sentimental side.
Calleja is addicted to challenges and has said on several occasions that he prepares himself for a Dakar as he prepares for an episode of Planeta Calleja.
From a very young age, Calleja has shown an interest in exploring and discovering the ins and outs of the mountain while he learned lessons in each of his outings. Among his great achievements stands out the ascent of Everest in 2005 and the ascent to the Seven Summits between 2006 and 2008. If you want to know more about the life of a born adventurer who has shown his dedication and passion for the mountains and nature throughout his career, keep reading to discover 10 curiosities about his personal and professional life.
1. Where and when was Jesús Calleja born?
Jesús Calleja was born on April 11, 1965 in Fresno de la Vega, León, and it was there that he made his first outing to the mountains at just 13 years old. After having learned great lessons from his father, who read to him about expeditions by great mountaineers such as Edmund Hillary or Ernest Shackleton, he decided to get on the Matallana train and set out on his first outing to the mountains of León, among which Peña Ubiña stands out, one of the highest peaks in the Cantabrian Mountains. After this experience his professional career had only just begun.
2. Did you know that when he was little he used to get lost in the mountains?
Unlike his father, Julián Calleja, and his brother, Kike Calleja, Jesús preferred to explore the mountains until the wee hours of the morning than go fishing with them. Due to his adventurous desire and desire to eat the mountain, Calleja was lost on several occasions between the night and the Leonese vegetation, causing the concern of his relatives, because they had to go looking for him on more than one occasion.
3. What sports does Jesús Calleja play?
In addition to his facet as a mountaineer, the television presenter has confessed on numerous occasions that he is a great lover of sports in all versions of him. He has practiced tennis, surfing, motocross, rallying and many other disciplines throughout his life, but without a doubt, the mountains are what make him feel most alive.
But do you keep that adventurous spirit on a day-to-day basis? Calleja warns that it is the same as on television and that his personality does not change. In fact, many people have stated that when they meet it they hardly know the difference. As we can see, he is not a character. Full naturalness and confidence as in their programs.
4. What was your first visit to the Himalayas?
At the age of 21, and after having already explored several mountains in the Picos de Europa, he decided to visit the Himalayas. After this brief expedition, Calleja dedicated his life to other chores and left mountaineering a bit apart. It was not until 2005 when on May 30 the man from Leon managed to reach the top of Everest, thus becoming the first Spaniard from León to climb to the top. He began the ascent two days after his permission to set foot in the Himalayas expired, and it was for this reason that he did so under somewhat poor conditions: with a single oxygen bottle, a sherpa and little acclimatization. He did it hand in hand with the Diario Leonés, a newspaper in his city that documented the entire climb of Calleja to Everest. Without a doubt, one of the greatest achievements of Jesús Calleja was this, and also, a promise fulfilled at the age of 15 in front of his father, Julián Calleja.
Among other of his great challenges is having climbed 3 eight thousand, has reached the top of the 7 highest peaks of each continent, reached the North Pole on a land expedition and has traveled to Antarctica by sea and by air on three occasions.
5. Do you know the facet of the mountaineer's hairdresser?
After his first visit to the Himalayas, and without much money saved, Jesús Calleja began his career as a hairdresser in his homeland together with his two brothers, founding the hairdresser's Hermanos Calleja
6. Did you know that Calleja has adopted three children?
Given his love for the mountains and his visits to Nepal, even going so far as to live and work in that country, Jesús Calleja decided to adopt a Nepali boy named Ganesh, who unfortunately suffered from tuberculosis that could not be cured in Nepal . After a long period of bureaucracy, the man from Leon was able to bring the child to Spain to cure him in a public hospital. Calleja only wanted the child to recover the health that belonged to him, but once he was cured, the child called the mountaineer "dad", and it was at this moment that he decided to adopt him in order to spend the rest of his life with him. After this first adoption, Calleja ended up also adopting Ganesh's best friend and sister; Suresh Shrestha and Sundari Lama.
7. What was your first job after being a hairdresser?
After having funded his savings bank account working as a hairdresser, the Leonese spent 16 years working as expedition guide in the Himalayas and the Alps for a trekking and climbing agency located in Spain. This, in addition to increasing his savings, also allowed him to climb mountains such as the 6153-meter Stok-Kangri (Asia) and thus propel his career as a mountaineerer.
8. Do you want to know when the mountaineer participated in the Dakar rally?
In addition to his passion for the mountains and nature, the man from Leon is also a great lover of cars, speed and competition. For this reason, and after three attempts to complete the Dakar rally in 2011, 2018 and 2019, Calleja finally achieved his goal: to finish the Dakar rally in 2020 at the hands of Toyota, where after many complications and physical problems, he managed to win the 30th and 5th position among the Spanish. This is just one more success in the life of Jesús Calleja, an adventurer who tirelessly seeks to surpass himself in each of his feats.
9. What award did Jesús Calleja win for his role on television?
Thanks to his desire to excel and passion for adventure, the Leonese was the presenter of a great success program from 2007 to 2014. The television show Desafío Extremo was one of the most watched entertainment programs in prime time since 2009. The mountaineer has assured in multiple interviews that traveling the world and having the opportunity to give voice to his adventures has been one of the best experiences of his life. Thanks to his dedication and charisma, the man from Leon won the Golden Microphone award in 2010, a recognition that praises the role of great figures in the field of journalism.
His television role did not end in 2014, but his passion for adventure has given rise to television programs such as Planeta Calleja, a project in which the mountaineer has had the opportunity to invite celebrities from all over the world to the program to overcome with it great challenges and experiences in nature. Some of the celebrities who have gone through the program are Paz Padilla, Bertín Osborne or Elsa Pataky, whom we can see below happily posing with Calleja in the episode in which she stars alongside Chris Hemsworth.
Another of his most recent achievements has been the publication of his book If you don't like your life, change it in which he intends to encourage his readers with a message that anything is possible through through the story of his most extreme adventures. getAbstract recommends the book to all those who need motivation to achieve great goals.
10. Did you know that cancer ended the life of his brother Julián?
Jesús Calleja, along with his brother Kike, were very close to his brother Julián, who unfortunately died of cancer, leaving a void that was impossible to fill in the lives of his relatives. On multiple occasions, the mountaineer and television presenter has confessed in interviews and through his social networks how much he misses his brother and the moments they shared in childhood.
As you may have seen, success has not come without merit in the life of the mountaineer and presenter from León. From a very young age he has fought for what is his great passion: the mountains. That dedication and tenacity that characterizes the humble Calleja is what has led him to the top of Everest. Without a doubt, he is one of the most loved and praised athletes in our country, and also one of those who has practiced the most disciplines throughout his career.