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North America, Mexico, Neuvo León, Parque Nacional Cumbres de Monterrey, Cañón de la Huasteca, El Pico Erin, Hunab Ku

Cañón de la Huasteca, El Pico Erin, Hunab Ku. Access to this area, located in the municipality of Santa Catarina, is easy: once in the park follow the paved main road for approximately three miles, to where the road turns to gravel. Continue and turn right at the sign “Virikute,” found beside the road on the ground. This road leads to the Guitarritas Canyon.

In this area are two quality rock walls: 550m Tatewarí, with two sport routes and, right of Tatewarí, 540m El Pico Erin. El Pico Erin has one traditional route (5.10-A2+), opened by Francisco Medina and Paul Vera (originally from the city of Monterrey) in the summer of 2002. (Note: A report on this route, Lobsang Dolma, was unavailable at press time. However, a photo and some information can be found at: http://www.aventuraverde.com/escalada/topos/ topoframe.html) Medina and Vera provided us with information about El Pico.

Our route, Hunab Ku (which means “life” and “movement” in the Mayan language), was opened in December and is the first sport route on Pico Erin. Mauricio Hernández Sanders, Pablo Ivan García Martínez, and I climbed as a team of three, with one porter. We climbed free, but hung from hooks to drill and place bolts. We placed 86 bolts, including belay stations, which were in huecos of excellent rock quality and very clean of vegetation. This project took us five days on the wall; we climbed 11 pitches averaging 40m in length. We descended via our route. The route, which we rate V 5.11+, indicates the wall’s potential for multipitch climbs on excellent rock.

Luis Carlos García Ayala, Mexico (translated by M. Loomis)