American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

South America, Chile-Northeast Andes, Ojos del Salado, Cerro "Radioactivo" and Cerro "Ojitos"

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1987

Ojos del Salado, Cerro “Radioactivo” and Cerro “Ojitos, ” While in the area in the first two weeks of March, our expedition made the ascent of Cerro “Radioactivo,” shown on the maps as P 5750 (18,865 feet), about six kilometers southwest of the new and quite comfortable Hospedería Murray at Barrancas Blancas. This climb was made by a multinational group consisting of Chileans Gino Casassa, Marie Claude Bastres, Rodrigo Mújica, Americans James B. Scott, Burton A. Falk, Blaine A. Gibson, Charles J. Grashow and British John H. Rogers on March 8 for a second recorded ascent. They simply followed the ridge for four hours from the last place one can drive a jeep. The first recorded ascent was made in 1969. The climbers, whose names and details of the climb were found in a plastic bag in a cairn, gave the peak its name. Cerro “Ojitos,” a peak or prominent shoulder northwest of Ojos del Salado and southwest of the Refugio Andino, was climbed by Casassa, Mújica, Scott, Falk, Gibson, Rogers and Peruvian James Dirks on March 10. A barometric altimeter reading on the summit gave an elevation of 19,200 feet (5852 meters). No cairn was found on the summit and so one was built in which the name of the peak and those of the climbers were left. The Ojos del Salado was climbed on March 12 in 12 hours by the same group without Dirks and with American John Kurnick from the new Refugio Tejos on the north side. They ascended to the crater rim and then to the north or “technical” summit, described by Captain René Gajardo in A.A.J., 1957. The summit register has between 100 and 200 names of climbers who have reached this point since its first ascent.

Rick Jali

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