American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing
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Fitz Roy, north face, Persiguiendo el Avión

Argentina, Chaltén Massif

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Author: Sean Villanueva, Belgium
  • Climb Year: 2013
  • Publication Year: 2013

After doing two first free ascents in the Torres del Paine [see Chile section] Stephane Hanssens and I headed back to El Chaltén. (We had already been there in December and climbed the Ragni route on Cerro Torre.) On our last three days in South America (early March), a very good weather window appeared, so we headed up the hill for a last time. We went for the northwest face of Fitz Roy and climbed nonstop, even through the night.

Our route climbed new ground to the Grand Hotel and finished up El Flaco con Domingo. We onsighted every pitch but one, on which we lowered back down for the redpoint. All said: 1,800m of climbing, 900m of new ground, with difficulties to 7b+. The route took us 31 hours base camp to summit and 46 hours round-trip. We took a one-hour nap on the glacier, and then we had to run down to El Chaltén and Rio Gallegos to catch our plane! We called the climb Persiguiendo el Avión (Chasing the Plane, 1,800m, 7b+).

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