American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

South America, Bolivia, Araca Group, Cordillera Quimsa Cruz, 1990-1992

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1995

Araca Group, Cordillera Quimsa Cruz, 1990-1992. The rock in this climbers’ paradise is a firm red or gray granite, in places glacially polished. The climber will find much annoying lichen, which grows high on the peaks. In 1987, nearly all the peaks were climbed by a German expedition from Bayreuth. [A detailed report appears on pages 166-169 of AAJ, 1988. Inadvertently, the names of many of the features were omitted from the map. The map is given here again with the missing names added.—Editor.] My father Erich Gatt and Arthur Wutscher visited the region in 1990. They gave their attention to the lesser summits and unclimbed walls. They climbed a new route on a tower southwest of El Obelisco and made the first ascent of Pico Horizonte. In 1991, my father and I returned, hoping to make the first ascent of El Obelisco (given another risqué name by the Bayreuthers). Theodor Herzog described it as a “crazy watchtower,” a completely smooth, 35-meter-high spire. With high hopes we got to the Hacienda Tenería, the starting point for climbs in this region to find that the first ascent had been made a month before by members of the Club Andino Católico Boliviano, in June 1991. Our new route on El Obelisco we rate as of VI+ UIAA difficulty. We also made a new route on the Cuernos del Diablo, climbing over the Nariz del Diablo (“The Devil’s Nose”), which was undoubtedly a first ascent. This involved seven pitches of V to VI+ difficulty. In 1992,1 returned with Markus Stockert. From August 2 to 8, from Base Camp on the lake Chilliwani Kkota, we made three first ascents and three new routes. We called the first ascents, “Torre Austria, “Aguja Austria” and “Muela del Stemar.” The new routes of two pitches each were near Nuevo Zongo. Two were on Torre Chimenea and are rated VI+ and VII+. The third (V) was on P 5050, north of Nuevo Zongo.

Stefan Gatt, Österreichischer Alpenverein

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