American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

South America, Peru, Other Ranges, Choquesafra, Cordillera Vilcambamba, Jiramane, Ayachincana, Allinccapac, and Other Peaks, Cordillera Carabaya and Vilcanota

  • Climbs And Expeditions
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  • Publication Year: 1969

Choquesafra, Cordillera Vilcabamba. Jiramane, Ayachincana, Allinccapac, and other peaks, Cordillera Carabaya and Vilcanota. In order to reach Cordillera Vilcabamba from the south I crossed the Apurimac (3300 feet) at Pasaje Hacienda, entered the district of Choquetira by the way of Piquipata and Acobamba, and continued to the hamlet of Choquesafra (11,800 feet), northeast of the peak of the same name. Nevado Choquesafra (16,902 feet), on the western tip of the Vilcabamba range, was climbed from here on June 7 but because of the unsettled weather of the region, it had to be reclimbed three times by night until finally, June 13, the view was satisfactory. The climb was via Quehuiñahuayco, and a window in the east ridge giving access to the glacier and névé which led to the gap between the two summits. These were reached with a few more steps, the northern being slightly higher. On the return trip the three summits of Cosñiriti (c. 16,600 feet), between Artisión and Choquetira, were climbed on June 15 from a camp near Apacheta de Sillaorcco, south of Artisión.

On June 28 Gérard Laubacher and I entered the Cordillera Carabaya north of Macusani. We climbed Chichiccapac (18,426 feet) the next day by the eastern glacier route, 3 hours from Laguna Chungara. Then we moved camp to the upper Quebrada Jatunvizjana, an upwards continuation of the Taype valley, and a place called Plaza de Armas by the natives. Allinccapac (18,859 feet) was reached on July 3 from the innermost part of the main glacier via the northeast névé and the east face. The unusually violent snowstorm of July 4 to 6 prevented further climbing, chasing us out of the region for over a week.

By July 16 I moved to the Ayachincana (13° 34' south, 70° 40' west), Cordillera Carabaya, a small compact group beyond the San Gaban river, north of Socapata. Entering via Río Condeña, Machajmarca, Totorani and the left of the two parallel valleys separated by a low crest, I installed camp at about 14,100 feet north of Siracuna. This is near the confluence of two glaciers descending from southeast (Huarmiriti) and east respectively. From here I climbed Huayacauri (16,780 feet) on July 19 and 21, following the latter of the two glaciers mentioned to a high open névé that dips to the other side. Here the two highest peaks appear, Huayacauri to the right, Quiruyoj to the north and left. Perhaps the most remarkable peak is a single gendarme in Quiruyoj’s southwest ridge, called Surcarucana. It appears as a perfect column from all directions, consisting of a granite monolith not too well balanced, some 50 feet high. Quiruyoj (16,810 feet) was climbed July 20, all ice except for the large pinnacles forming the summit. Surumpioj (16,540 feet) was traversed the next day while descending from Huayacauri to camp. It is a flat snow dome, southwest of Huayacauri, which separates the high névé from another névé plateau of the same size to the south. This southern plateau emits glaciers to three sides, (1) to the northwest, named Huarmiriti, between Surumpioj and Siracuna, (2) to the southwest, between the latter and Yanasivi, and (3) to the southeast, between the latter and Huayacauri. Finally Yanasivi (16,430 feet), southernmost of the higher peaks, was climbed July 22 via the séracs of the Huarmiriti glacier.

From the long turn, Km 134, of the Urcos—Quince Mil road Nevado Chectacucha (c. 17,000 feet) northeast of the huts of Chectacucha was reached on July 25 by the south side. Two-pointed Quicu (as I named it, 3 miles further northwest, beyond the Chectacucha basin) I climbed on September 1 via the round snow shoulder and the west ridge to the higher western summit (17,000 feet). Both peaks are the easternmost nevados of the Ayacachi Vilcanota. The north- and westernmost outpost of the same group, Minasnioj (or Yararico, as it is sometimes called, 17,300 feet) was paid a visit on September 6, 1967, via Ancasi, Catacocha, and the west ridge (first ascent by the southeast névé years ago by Eduardo de Bary, and Luicho, of Ccapana). Also in 1967, I climbed Aricoma (17,553 feet) and Jiramane (17,550 feet), Cordillera Carabaya, on August 17 and 19, the former being to the right, the latter to the far left of the Crucero—Limbani highway. The latter, situated 5 miles to the north of Aricoma, offered an open view of the selva with the meanders of Río Inambari, at sunrise. This peak cannot be seen from the road except from near Vacqueria, where I entered a valley to the southwest, filled by Laguna La Vaña, and reached the next floor at the inner end, and west, of the lagoon. Above the glacier, I continued by the southeast spur and the east ridge, traversing the upper ice-free east wall to the north ridge before reaching the top. While visiting Minas Korani, southern Vilcanota, I climbed Yuracuno (17,380 feet) on August 29, 1967, via the village of the same name, where they call it Auzangate, and the south ridge (A.A.J., 1968, 16:1, p. 199). The east ridge shows horizontal columns of the intrusive, near the summit. From the La Raya, Vilcanota, railway station Cerro Chimboya (5100 meters or 16,733 feet) was climbed on August 4 by the west ridge.

Olaf Hartmann, Goettingen University

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