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South America, Peru, Cordillera Oriental, Various Ascents

Various ascents. On an expedition I led to the Cordillera Oriental with Tim Riley, we did several climbs. Our first climb, on August 9, was of a nameless ca. 5,200m peak that extends from the long ridge west-southwest of Nevado Huaguruncho. We climbed the northeast ridge, grading it AD, and descended the southwest ridge/western slopes in a round trip from base camp of 12½ hours. I could find no evidence of this peak having been climbed, although the French gave it a go in 1968.

Our next climb was on the southwest face of Nevado Nausacocha and was just awesome, 16 pitches of perfect climbing. Snow, ice, and perfect granite led to the summit. I thought this peak may also have been unclimbed but found a bolt anchor and fixed ropes on the summit, the ropes headed down the southeast ridge. I could find no details of this ascent, although I found a krab with “Made in Japan” stamped on it. [Subsequent research revealed a Japanese ascent unpublished in western journals: Southeast Ridge, Kumagai-Kubo-Nishikawa-Moriya-Sawamura-Tomomura, 1978.] We rappelled our ascent route and were back in high camp after 18 hours of climbing. We rated this route D+.

Our final climb was on August 23, of a minor rock peak, near Cerro Barraco, which we climbed by its east ridge, with one short pitch of severe (British grade), to gain the moderate east ridge.

Anthony Barton, U.K.