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South America, Peru—Cordillera Occidental, Solimana Traverse and Coropuna

Solimana Traverse and Coropuna, Cordillera Occidental. On June 29 Hans Dümmler, Hans Raum, Heinz Thäter and I left the Hacienda Hiatapampa on the Chuquibamba-Cotahuasi road at about 14,450 feet and that same day set up Base Camp at 16,900 feet below the southeast slopes of Solimana. After a day of acclimatization we climbed the c. 19,000-foot easternmost peak of the Solimana group. From there I descended to the col to the west and followed the ridge over the c. 19,900-foot east summit to the c. 20,000-foot west summit of Solimana. We had previously thought the traverse would take us two days. My solo had started only as a reconnaissance of the beginning of the ridge but the whole traverse took only three hours. I descended the north face. My three companions the next day climbed the east peak by its southeast face and followed my route of the day before. Meanwhile I traversed the tiring south face of Solimana to reach the c. 19,350-foot westernmost snow peak of the group, following the ridge from Solimana’s west peak. Raum and Thäter climbed the c. 21,000-foot southwest summit of Coropuna on July 5. I climbed Ampato, reaching the main summit on July 10, using in part the southwest rock ridge, while Dümmler and Raum, who were farther east, were forced to turn back just below the foresummit by deep heavy snow.

Tilman Schmitt, Deutscher Alpenverein

*With the ascents of Schmitt’s party, it appears that there are no more unclimbed summits in this group. The summits run roughly from northeast to southwest. Ghiglione, Rebitsch and party climbed the “northern” peak in 1952, which would seem to be Schmitt’s “east summit”, while Bignani and Blanco in 1970 ascended the highest point or Schmitt’s “west summit”. The Schmitt party therefore seems to have made the second ascent of these and the first ascent of the other summits. It should also be noted that the altitudes given by Schmitt are about 700 feet lower than those previously given. This makes sense since the Peruvian Instituto Geográfico Militar has recently given a new height for nearby Coropuna, which is some 700 feet lower than the previously given altitude.—Editor