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South America, Peru, Cordillera Vilcanota, Chumpe (Jatunriti) Traverse, Colquecruz 1 Attempt (Alcamarinayoc)

Chumpe (Jatunriti) traverse, Colquecruz 1 attempt (Alcamarinayoc). Intrigued by the scarcity of information despite extensive research, Amy Bullard and I spent three weeks exploring and climbing in the northern Cordillera Vilcanota from April 21 to May 10. We saw no one during this time. We accessed the peaks from a base camp at Laguna Mullucocha after a long-day approach from Tinqui. On April 29 we climbed the west ridge of Nevado Chumpe (6,106m, also called Jatunriti) from a camp at 5,400m on the glacier on the northwest side of the peak. Descent was made to the north, down to the col between Chumpe and the Colquecruz massif. The climbing was straightforward and scenic on steep, consolidated snow, the round-trip traverse from camp taking under eight hours. Colquecruz 1 (6,102m) is labeled Nevado Alcamarinayoc on Peru’s Carta Nacional 1:100,000 Ocongate sheet. We approached its southwest face from the southeast, through a col between it and Nevado Ichu Ananta. On May 4 we climbed the middle of the SW face to about 5,900m before turning back in a violent afternoon thunderstorm. Building ice-thread rappel anchors in the deep torrent of spindrift was memorable. The climbing was all on steep ice, with some hazard of falling ice and rock.

We don’t know whether the routes are new. As far as we could gather from our research, Chumpe had been climbed from the north (ridge/face), northwest face, and the south. No traverses had been mentioned. Colquecruz 1 had been climbed in the early 1960s from the north side, and traversed west to east from a camp on the north side. We received useful information from Jorge Villena, the SAEC, and Luis Pineto, all in Cusco, as well as warm hospitality and arriero support from Hostal Tinqui.

Peter Carse, AAC