Zongo Pass Rock Climbing
Bolivia, Cordillera Real
Many worthwhile rock climbs are found on the granite cliffs above Zongo Lake. Located at ca 4,800m, these can form part of an acclimatization program or provide relaxing days before or after a climb of Huayna Potosi?. There are around 30 older, trad-protected routes and many new sport climbs. Fun sport routes can be found in the immediate vicinity of the memorial plaque on the aqueduct leading from Zongo Lake to Charquini, 10 minutes’ walk from the start of the aqueduct at Casa Verde. Routes are 6a to 6c+ on good granite. There are also a dozen single-pitch sport routes below the dam (6a–7a+). Descend the rickety metal ladders and look for bolts.
Longer routes lie on the large buttress rising from the dirt road between the Casa Blanca and Casa Verde refugios at Zongo Pass. In August, Chris Clarke and Robert Rauch completed a three-pitch route they called California Dreaming (6b+). The bolted first pitch starts at the left edge of a prominent low roof, while the second either follows a beautiful dihedral (6a+, some trad gear required) or the bolted are?te on the left (6b+). The third pitch is also bolted. Other routes lie farther to the right.
Information supplied by Chris Clarke and Robert Rauch, Bolivia