We had a great time on Huayna Potosi. The trip was everything We had hoped it would be. Summitting was definitely the high point. Overall I thought the expedition and specially the guides were excellent,in my book you could not find a more qualified company, they`re the best in Bolivia...I personally recommend using www.bolivianjourneys.org for your next expedition...
Your name, Johnny Brown, whoever you are, should be removed from this entry and its real author, Nyle Walton, inserted. You probably weren't even alive in 1958.
Had to turn.
Hardly anyone else on the mountain that day and the sunrise from near the top was incredible. One of my favorite peaks just because of its beautiful profile.
Made it to 18,000' and decided to turn back in foul weather.
How old are you, Johnny Brown. This is a clear case of identity theft. You probably weren't even born when I hitchhiked down the Pan-American Highway and climbed Huayna Potosi in Bolivia. Please correct this climbers log and get real! Nyle Walton
When did you become Nyle Walton? Please correct this climbers' log to ascribe it to my name. You are too young to have ever hitchhiked to South America in the 1950s and climb Huayna Potosi. Love, Nyle Walton
First, the normal route. Secondly, the awe inspiring French route! great days, the both of them and what a pretty mountain she is!
Great easy route up a beautiful peak
Very short route and to much people in nice days, not recomanded.
THe Cordillera Real truly is an enchanting place. What a rush to summit a mountain with such a great view of the range. Wonderful.
It started off as a very cold morning but warmed up nicely to be an absolutely beautiful day.
Sent at around 12:00, was drinking in La Paz by 6:00. Great warm-up for a siege of Illamani 2 days later.
We had some great conditions to climb it.
A little mist at first but then a clear sky after an hour walking. Not too cold, and perfect snow conditions.
The last slope is a real challenge, save up some stamina for it ;o)
We did the ascent the agency "Alberth Bolivia" located on street Illampu in La Paz. Good guides and quite cheap compared to others. Prior to the ascent we had done the 3-day trekking from Tuni (via Condoriri Base Camp) to Base Camp of Huayna Potosi. Perfect to acclimatize and warm up, with three 5000m passes.
Beautiful climb- great view
Great climb. The summit ridge is quite the experience. Summited before dawn (no part of the plan). The lighting storms above the Amazon basin and below us were unreal.
Great easy climb. Sweet sunset as we ascended the fun headwall section on perfect snow. Early season climb and saw no one else on the mountain. I suspect this is rare for Huayna Potosi.
It appears that my climb of Huayna Potosi predates all the others in the summit log by almost half a century. I feel like a pioneer.
After hitchhiking for over four months from Salt Lake City south along the Pan American Highway, Karl Nelson and I reached La Paz. From Desaguadero on the Peruvian-Bolivian border at Lake Titicaca, we got a ride into La Paz in a U.S. Army deuce-and-a-half truck. It belonged to the U.S. Geodetic Survey Mission to Bolivia. With our eyes on Huayna Potosi looming on the eastern horizon, we borrowed a mountain tent from that organization and together with two members of the Club Andino de Bolivia, one Peter Toussaint (now deceased) and Col. (now General retired) Ramon Acero, launched an attempt on the mountain.
The club delivered us to the mountain's base at fifteen thousand feet on May 1 (May Day). Two miners from Milluni served as "sherpas" to carry our loads to the snout of the glacier. From there we totted the loads higher to the first level spot under a spectacular ice cliff at 17,500 and pitched our tents.
The next morning Karl refused to leave his sleeping bag. He had altitude sickness. Peter, Ramon, and I put on our crampons and attacked the ice pitch above the camp. The day was cloudless and we made excellent progress. On the broad plateau below the summit pyramid, Ramon vomitted his breakfast and fell behind. Together Peter and I traversed eastward to a corniced ridge that led ever more steeply past rock outcrops to the final peak. We stood on top of Huayna Potosi at one in the afternoon. Meanwhile Ramon recovered and followed our tracks to join us on the summit a half hour later.
Meanwhile clouds had risen to hide all but the highest summits of the Cordillera Real. After hand-shaking congratulations and poses for photographs, we remained on the sharp corniced peak for half an hour before undertaking a cautious and then a long glissading descent back to camp. The low sun in the wwest illuminated Illimani to the south as we completed the final thousand feet down to our awaiting tents where we aroused Karl from his sleeping bag (see photos and images).
Two days later, the Club Andino had a ski meet on Mount Chacaltaya where we celebrated our success and danced mambos and cha-cha-chas with the chicas inside the lodge 17,000 feet above the sea. Proud Peter showed off his mountaineering prowess to the girls by abselling off the lodge platform to the ski slope below it.
A week later, Karl and I continued our hitchhiking journey southward. We got to Mendoza, Argentina, before I came down with hepititus, probably from virus in food I had eaten in Bolivia. Ispent a week in a hospital and then flew back home to Utah via Santiago and Mexico City. Meanwhile Karl got his draft notice as he was about to embark for Cape Horn in Puerto Montt, Chile, and had to fly back to San Francisco to join Uncle Sam's army.
In just over six months we had traveled through Mexico, Central America and down the Andes from Colombia to Argentina for a total expenditure of about three hundred dollars each, transportation, food and lodging included. The climb of Huayna Potosi was the crowning achievement of the trip and cost us practically nothing. NIneteen fifty eight was my golden year of travel.
The East face includes at least the following routes: Normal, Vía de los Franceses, Bordaz Muñoz, and South-West Ridge.
From the city of La Paz, you can take a transport that will take you to the "Zongo Pass". Either arrange your own transportation (80 dollars in 1999!) to this area or try to take one of the buses that depart from El Alto (that poor town on the highest part of La Paz), in La Plaza Ballivian (Ballivian Square). They do not depart on an specific schedule, so you will have to wait for one. Alternatively you can try to “free ride” on one of those “gringo vans” that are part of organized climbs.
You can also hang out in the Hotel Torino, downtown La Paz and try to find other climbers aiming to go to the Huayna Potosi. I placed a note in one of the billboards and in a matter of a day I had two Climbing partners. Through one of them I met my wife! So keep on going! Another good place to hang out and meet climbers, used to be the Restaurant MONGOS. Check your guidebook.
Keep in mind that the return can be a problem. If you do not have a way to get back to La Paz you can wait from one hour to a couple of days at the Zongo Pass, although during the high season is quite busy and you can get a ride easely.
Once in Zongo Pass you can ask for porters. The family who lives there also can provide this service and believe me, it is best to get this help.
There are several places to camp when climbing the east face of the Huayna Potosi. One good option, for those in acclimatization stage is to camp next to the Zongo Pass house or to stay at the hut “Refugio Huayna Potosi” (tel: 323584, check it up once in La Paz). Next, get to the first campsite (Campo de Rocas, 5150), next to the glacier, and stay there and the next morning attempt the summit. Or stay the one night in this campsite and then get to the second campsite, the Campamento Argentino (5540Mts or 17880 ft) two hours after the start of the glacier. Acclimatized and fit climbers can do the whole summit attempt from bottom to top in one go, via the standard route.
Remember: getting to the Campmento Argentino may not be necessary (climb high, sleep low) if you go for the standard route, so you can stay in the first camp. Other routes may need a time saving approach and you may be required to stay at the second camp site, shaving out about one hour from the first camp.. This campsite is on the ice and snow… and considering the crevasses, and the altitude…..is your choice.