AAC Publications - http://publications.americanalpineclub.org

South America, Peru, Cordillera Blanca, Hatun Ulloc, Karma de los Condores Direct (to Summit)

Hatun Ulloc, Karma de los Condores Direct (to summit). In the Ishinca Valley in late July, Brady Robinson and I free-climbed the excellent Karma de los Condores (IV 5.11+, Crill-Gallagher, 2004) and extended the route to the summit of Hatun Ulloc (ca 14,500').

We spent several days climbing up and down the gully to the right of the formation to access and clean the upper tower, rappelled the striking summit ridge, and found outstanding climbing on perfect granite. We placed one protection bolt to avoid a 25' ledge fall on 5.11c face climbing and then redpointed the upper pitches. While at least one party had climbed to base of the final rock step, we found no sign of humanity on the upper pitches or at the top of the tower. [In 2005, Andy Wellman and James Woods repeated Karma and continued along the upper tiers, where they reported dirty and vegetated cracks, rock to 5.9R, and estimated their retreat as being from within 60m of the summit—Ed.]

After returning to the base we fixed three ropes, and when the weather cleared we blasted the entire route. We freed all 14 pitches (some gear pre-placed on Karma’s crux roof pitch). The harder pitches were well protected, while some 5.9 and 5.10 pitches had significant run-outs.

Dave Anderson, AAC