American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

South America, Bolivia, Illampu and Illimani, Cordillera Real

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1965

Illampu and Illimani, Cordillera Real. Active this year were Yugoslav, Mexican and Japanese expeditions as well as the "International Expedition,” which the writer accompanied to Illampu (20,873 feet), in an attempt to make its third ascent. International politics deprived us of our two Chilean members, while even more obscure politics of the Club Andino Boliviano kept away our Bolivian member. The team was further depleted when the writer fell ill, but the remaining three, Bob Reinecke of South Africa and two German residents of La Paz, Klaus Lutze and Werner Kraus, persisted. After several days of effort, which included cutting 80 steps up an ice wall, they reached a point near the top only to find it surmounted by a 150-foot overhanging ice mushroom. With all three exhausted and Lutze suffering from a knee injury, they wisely elected to forego this final challenge. The Yugoslavs later climbed the peak by the same route and two of them got up the ice mushroom with the aid of tension. A few days after our return to La Paz, I was privileged to lead Ian Marr and R. Ibata of La Paz up Calahuyo (c. 18,100 feet). I then accompanied Carlos Villegas and Alberto Beltrán to the summit of Illimani (21,201 feet). The following day several members of the Bolivian mountain troops led by Major Acero were also successful. Although arduous, this climb presents no major technical difficulty in contrast to the north summit.

George V. B. Cochran, M.D., Appalachian Mountain Club

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