American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Huandoy Este, Northwest Face

Peru, Cordillera Blanca

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Author: Sergio Ramirez Carrascal
  • Climb Year: 2012
  • Publication Year: 2013

While climbing La Esfinge in the Paron Valley in 2011, the Ecuadorian climber Joshua Jarràn (IFMGA) took interest in the northwest face of Huandoy Este (6,070m). In August 2012, he decided to try the route with aspirant guide Juliana García.

On August 15, Jarràn and García departed for the Parón Valley. Their approach was relatively simple; they started from Laguna Parón and hiked up the east side of a huge moraine below the Huandoys, setting up camp on the glacier close to the wall (ca. 4,600m). After a day acclimatizing, they climbed to the bergschrund (ca. 5,000m) to stash some gear. On August 17 they left camp at 3 a.m. to start the climb. After several pitches on snow and ice above the bergschrund, they reached the first crux, a steep rock band (75º). Above this, they traversed a snow ramp to the left (north) in order to reach a second rock band, the crux of the climb, where the pair climbed four pitches on vertical mixed terrain (UIAA V+ M3/4). At the end of this section they realized they had climbed only half of the route. The rest of the day proved challenging: The climb was not very technical, but gullies filled with powder snow made it precarious. At 7 p.m. they dug a hole and bivouacked.

The following day, they climbed ice and snow gullies up to the north ridge (ca. 5,900m). They did not continue to the summit due to unsafe snow conditions and descended the same route, which they called HK (1,300m, TD+ UIAA V+ M3/4).

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