Two days on Chimborazo. Johan Dahlström and me climbed the normal route through a rather safe snow covered El Corridor up to El Castillo where we pitched our tent and camp for the evening. The weather conditions were perfect with almost no wind at all despite from low clouds hanging over El Castillo.
At 11:00pm we woke up to a bright night full of stars and made a straight forward climb over the huge snowcovered flank of this huge mountain. We summited Cumbre Whymper at around 07:00.
Some cold winds up at the top and a mix of sun and clouds.
Later around noon the weather deterioated and while we were descending El Corridor (far too late) we were in mist and rain.
No attempt due to elevated avalanche conditions while we were there. The climbers memorial grave markers near the Whymper hut give you a little extra motivation to be cautious. Too bad, looked like a fun climb - the surrounding countryside is beautiful. Some big sloppy St. Bernard dog jumped all over me in the village we stopped at on the way back to Quito ...
Congrats! How was the route up to El Castillo? Any difficulties to find the route in the dark?
Started at 11:40pm, summited Whimper at 4:40am, return to Whimper hut at 6:20am. Clear skyes but, didn´t waited for sunrise due to coldness. For everyone who walks bit faster than other climbers, do not start at midnight, i recommend at 02:00 or 03:00 am to avoid summiting before sunrise. It should be absolutely sufficient. Easy climb, didn´t need to use ice axe just as a walking stick.
So tiring. Very difficult to keep putting one foot in front of the other but we survived and were successful. Quite cloudy so views were nonexistent.
My first summit of 2010. Guided Maria and Rennata, both from Austria. We left from refugio Whymper at 11 pm. A very bright night lit by the full moon. Actually I started the climb guiding to Maria. A very fast ascent. One of the guides got sick and asked me to take his client along with me (Rennata).
It took us 5:45 hours to get to the Veintimilla summit where Rennata asked me to leave her there. No way!!.. The three of us climbed for about 30 more minutes and got just on time to see the beautiful sunrise colors from the Whymper summit (6,310 m / 20,702 ft).
Hugs, a few tears and pictures. Personally it felt great to me... to say good bye to 2009 on the summit of Cotopaxi two days ago, and to welcome the new year at the top of Ecuador's highest mountain.
Got down by the same route we came up. Mountain conditions were excellent, except for the hard ice-gravel ones at the first dome, where Rennata slipped and fell down forcing me to use self arrest technique... uff!.. I stopped the fall a couple meters down.
A great accomplishment while guiding to my climbing partners... three mountains, three summits... no failures. Can't stop smiling :).
You don't know if you can do something unless you try... This was my second time to Chimborazo. I went on Nov 10 but had lots of rocks come crashing down near us. We decided the conditions were too dangerous to continue. But, I came back one week later and was so happy I made it to the Whymper summit in time for sunrise! My guide and I left the refuge at 11pm to make sure we had enough time, and it worked out perfectly. We got back to the refuge at 9:30am on stable snow.
A bit icy around 18,200, otherwise ok. Came down castillo, the last bit of frozen scree with no complete snow cover was tedious.
Climbed with my bighornmonkey and had a great time...except for getting stuck in the tent during a storm -after- we finished the climb. The electricity in the air buzzing all things metal was freeeaaaaky!
I wasn't there mentally... what can I say??? I just have to go back and try again.
Made it to the Veintimilla (6267m), then the Whymper (6310m) summit under good conditions. It took 1 hour to do the round trip between the two summits. We climbed the direct route.
It snowed on us on the way down.
Wet weather left a good amount of new snow on the mountain. We made it to 6000m before turning around due to high avy danger.
Made it to the Ventemilla summit. Great conditions, except for poor visibility on summit.
Standing on the summit of Chimborazo on Christmas with the sun rising and volcanoes smoking in the distance is something I will never forget. The climbing conditions were perfect...just a high altitude snow climb. Whymper to Whymper in 6.5 hours...back in Quito for Christmas dinner by mid-afternoon.
Normal route, 11:30 pm start. Veintimilla summit right at sunrise! Pretty incredible! Great snow conditions on the entire mountain. We heard that ice screws or pickets have not been needed in a year and a half! But that could change quickly...
Extreme conditions, strong winds, very cold, iced route, no visibility and finally dust from Tunguragua eruptions cover many areas.
Me and other 20 persons tried with this hard conditions, but finally all dicided to quit after many hours fighting with the wild nature.
Extreme cold sent me direct to hospital with facial muscle iced. At the same time, sadly a climber from Venezuela dies that day, check newspaper note (in spanish)
Left the hut at 12:30 am, solo, but behind a few guided parties, since I´d heard that the Castillo section was pretty tough routefinding. Made great friends with all the guides so they didn´t mind me following their headlamps at all.
If you know your way through the Castillo (like the guides), its pretty straightforward. After that, prepare yourself for about 900 meters (2800 ft or so!) of slogging up a giant volcano.
Summitted the Ventimilla at 5:30 and the Whymper Summit just after 6am. With the sunrise slowly creeping out as we crossed the summit plateau, I fondly recall smiling widely and having lots of fun the whole way. Back at the hut by 9am, just as the sun was warming up the Castillo.
At this time the route whas in bad conditions. Only ice, you need to be very careful. Not an mountain that I will recomand.
Fun peak, but a long day. Very exciting to watch the considerable volcanic activity from Tungurahua from this route.
Beautiful, blue skies at 0715, when we topped out on the Veintemilla summit. Of course, it was cold and windy as hell! Our feet were cold the whole night, so the sun was a welcome help--thawed us out pretty nicely. The El Castillo route is a seriously mind-numbing climb, perhaps the Glacier route would be more interesting. Trip report