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South America, Peru, Cordillera Blanca, Chopicalqui, Burros Esolvenos to Southeast Ridge

Chopicalqui, Burros Eslovenos to Southeast Ridge. On June 26 Matic Obid, Pavel Ferjancic, Jernej Arcon, Vladimir Makarovic, and I (all Slovenian) approached the east face of Chopicalqui via the Quebrada Ulta, as described in Brad Johnson’s Classic Climbs of the Cordillera Blanca. This special part of the Cordillera Blanca has beautiful lakes and mountains, no people, no base camps filled with tents, and no pollution. At 2 a.m. on the 28th we left our tents at 5,000m. Because of a toothache, Jernej didn’t come. After three hours we reached the face. We started left of the East Face Direct and climbed 100m of 50° snow, followed by 100m of rock on the left side of small couloir. We then angled slightly left to avoid rockfall and climbed 400m of 50-70° snow. For orientation, there is a big tower on the ridge, and we stayed to its left. The last 50m to the ridge was mixed climbing. The route ends on the Southeast Ridge route at 6,000m. Because of deep snow on the ridge we did not go on the summit and descend the normal route, as planned, but rappelled our route (12 60m rappels on pitons and snow pickets). From tent to tent we needed 21 hours. Burros Eslovenos (600m, M5 50-70°).

Mitja Glescic, Slovenia