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South America, Ecuador, Cotopaxi, First (?) Ascent to the Highest Point, 1929

Cotopaxi, First (?) Ascent to the Highest Point, 1929. On page 164 of the A.A.J., 1962, Professor Evelio Echevarría states about Cotopaxi: “It has been debated whether this peak has been so far climbed, because all expeditions have reached the rim of the crater and not the culminant aiguille on its north, said to be 150 feet higher than the points usually attained. ” As Ascent N° 11, it is further noted: “A Swede probably reached the rim.” Investigation has now turned up documents which prove that the Swede was Gunnar Eklund. Eklund left Sweden in 1929 for Ecuador, where he was sent by the Swedish L. M. Ericsson Telephone Company. According to a cable sent to the Svenska Fjällklubben on November 10, 1929, he scaled Cotopaxi on November 4, 1929, stating that he had reached both “the crater and the very top.” These facts are also registered in Till Fjälls, 1930, the annual of the Svenksa Fjällklubben. There is no doubt that Eklund was a most able mountaineer and that he scaled the final rock needle forming the highest summit of Cotopaxi. In 1931 he made the third ascent of the Volcán Tolima in the Colombian Andes. Eklund was born in 1900 and died in Cuenca, Ecuador in 1947, at the age of only 47.

Anders Bolinder, Svenska Fjällklubben