American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

South America, Argentina, El Toro

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

El Toro. A most extraordinary find was made by two climbers, Erich Groch and Antonio Beorchia, when on January 28 they made what they had assumed would be the first ascent of El Toro (20,952 feet), in the Province of San Juan. On the summit they found what appeared to be a human head lying on the surface. When they tried to lift it, they discovered it was still attached to a mummified body. They returned with others to retrieve the body, which had been there at least 450 years, a sacrificial victim with a wound at the back of the head. He had been a young man of between 15 to 20 years. He was in a sitting position with his hands crossed below his knees, dressed in gray trousers with red trimmings, a red wool cap and a poncho. Under the body a rat was found, also mummified.

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