Himaciña, Southeast Ridge

Bolivia, Cordillera Real
Author: Alexander von Ungern. Climb Year: 2019. Publication Year: 2020.

On October 16, the day after climbing Surapatilla (see report here), Chris Knight and I left our camp at 4 a.m. to climb Himaciña (5,458m, as defined by IGM map 5945-IV, 16°0'28.99"S, 68°21'43.16"W; Google Earth’s imagery is incorrectly flattened at this point). We were lucky to find a small track made by Andean deer, which allowed us to cross the steep, unstable moraine from the main glacier flowing down from Chachacomani. We reached a plateau around 5,000m from where we could easily access the glacier below the south flanks of Himaciña. Almost immediately this was steep, and we pitched three rope lengths up to 55° before reaching a col close to 5,250m (this steep section was avoided on the descent by following slopes much further to the southeast).

We continued up Himaciña's southeastridge, which involved interesting mixed sections. The second half of the ridge was fully snow-covered and not as steep, but it was exposed on both sides. We underestimated the length of the ridge, and having left our backpacks, with water, at the base, the ascent was quite a feat, as we were already dehydrated from the previous day. On the summit my GPS recorded 5,482m; we found no cairn, nor did we build one. This summit has probably been climbed at some point, as it is pretty obvious when hiking into the huge glacial valley on the normal route up Chachacomani. However, we have found no information about a previous ascent. [Editor's note: The IGM 5945-IV map shows three tops in this vicinity. On the map, the highest appears to be an unnamed summit with two other tops to the northwest and northeast, both named Cerro Himaciña. Knight and von Ungern climbed the northwest top and felt it was of a similar height to the unnamed top. In 1983, Udo Knittel and Reinhold Siegel from a Bavarian expedition reached the northeast top, marked as 5,252m, from the north, but it is unclear whether they continued southwest to the unnamed summit.]

– Alexander von Ungern, Andean Ascents, Bolivia

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