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South America, Ecuador, British Expedition

British Expedition. Bill Goodfellow, Peter Pollard, David Winstanley and I climbed in Ecuador from January 3 to February 12. Still unacclimatized, we floundered in soft snow which threatened to avalanche on the steep north face of Illiniza Sur until we turned back with our two Ecuadorian companions 300 feet below the 17,278-foot summit. We four then made an ascent of Illiniza Norte (16,733 feet) and possibly the first descent over the big gendarme of the southeast ridge, a rock climb. Our first attempt on Cotopaxi failed 800 feet below the 19,350-foot peak, and our try on Cotocachi (16,205 feet) up the east ridge and north face was halted 200 feet short in appalling weather during a 17-hour day. Winstanley and I then climbed Cotopaxi though bothered by soft snow melted by the heat of the volcano. Joined by the American Harold Kramer and an Ecuadorian, the two of us finally climbed Chimborazo (20,563 feet).

Thomas Hardman, Army Mountaineering Association