Normal route from the Ishinca refuge and back - descending from the opposite side. Weather was perfect - a bit too warm (lots of "penitentes" on the lower part of the glacier). This is an easy peak, but you do need to good acclimatization, and you need to be prepared for some steep sections, especially as you approach the summit. It's a long slog from the refuge to the edge of the glacier.
Immense views of Toclla, Palca, and Ranranpalca.
Perfect day, calm and completely clear. Unlike Urus two days prior. Spent 40 minutes on the summit. Awesome panoramic views. Ranrapalca kinda dwarfs you up there, but that's ok..
Easy walk from the valley. Nice view towards Tocclaju/Palcaraju and Ranrapalca..
Long approach from Ishinca basecamp, without technical difficulties, great acclimatization climb!
Climbed from ishinca refuge to summit in 5 hours. Fun little ice step at the very top. This was our acclimatization climb. Had great views of palcaraju.
Nice 'n' easy, though a little ways from base camp. Same as Urus, we carried our boots and wore runners up to the glacier. The final bit to the summit was steeper than expected, views were top notch.
A long, long hike from the refuge to the base of the glacier. We took the circuitous way around the lake and across the valley from Tocclaraju. Some awesome views. The climb itself was not difficult, although there were plenty of crevasses. A short ~70 degree section at the top made the finish more interesting.
Eventful first Peruvian summit. Did with Rich.
After leaving the refugio (we'd hoped to camp, but the weather was so miserable on the approach that we caved instead of being miserable that night) at 6.05 (SEEMED like an early enough start!), made good time on the approach.
A 1 1/2 hour lunch didn't make up any time. We saw some climbers descending the 'standard' way as we headed up an alternate start up the glacier. When we arrived at the broken up part of the glacier right before the summit pyramid, the direct route didn't look like the most appealing way to go, so we headed over the plateau to see what might look more feasible. Got up a section that was reasonable to gain the upper part of the mountain.
Whilst heading for the summit pyramid, we went through a section of extremely unstable talus. A large block shifted & landed on Rich's ankle. Extremely fortunate that it wasn't broken (just a BAD sprain). Being a BAMF, he continued on.
Summited at 15.52 (summit cornice held :) ). It became obvious that clouds were moving in, so we left at 16.04 & booked.
Below summit pyramid, we followed others' footprints in hopes of a speedy (standard) descent. Rich's injury forced some shenanigans such as lowering over a crevasse to get to the other side. Visibility down to 10m or so at this point, & snowing. Became increasingly uneasy at the thought of doing an unplanned open bivy at 17,000 in a storm on a glacier, but was reassured that that wasn't going to happen (I didn't believe :) ).
We kept on going & finally made it off the glacier (still snowing, in the dark). After not finding the bridge across the converging glacial streams (fitting end of the 'day,' we ended up just fording), back at the refugio at 5.10.
Enjoyable climb up a mountain that would be a giant in most parts of the world :) with a good amigo. Spectacular views & a memorable day. Impressed by your ability to make it back like you did after a notable injury, man- props!
After spending a night at the nice Ishinca hut we were good acclimatized for the climb. However, suddenly my climbing partner Mark got a struck of AMS and was not able to climb. Therefore I left the hut alone at 03:30 and worked my way up towards Ishinca. As I was not familiar with the route and due to darkness I decided to climb over the north-west slope which was easier to navigate. The bergschrund just before the summit did not cause a problem. I descended via the NW slopes. I encountered some steep sections and one bergschrund which called for some attention. I did not meet or see one singel soul for 8 hours. A lovely day.
Went up by myself (not recommended), but there were many parties on the route.
Great vistas from the summit and such a pleasant trip when you do the loop.
Very nice view from the summit.
July 2013 was very stable weatherwise in the Cordillera Blanca. Our team managed to climb Urus, Ichinca, Toclaraju (through the Bergshrund route), Huascaran Sul and Chopicalqui. We had to abandon halfway up the Pisco due to very bad weather.
up SW, down NW. Rani looks nice
We did the traverse from a high camp near a little lake for acclimatization. Unfortunatelly this was the only peak we summited in the Cordillera Blanca.
Easy night climb from base camp, full moon and clear skies, spectacular sunrise over Ranrapalca. Tiny summit, not helped by several large teams trying to stuff themselves all on the summit at the same time instead of waiting for others to descend. Beautiful views and an easy climb.
Up NW down SW, made for a long morning. Climbed this in order to finalize acclimation and an attempt of Tocllaraju two days later!
Unusual conditions prompted scaling a 15 foot vertical ice wall on the far side of a summit bergschrund.
Way easier than Pisco. Mt Hood with a 10 mile approach 7,000 feet higher up.
Going by the expressions on peoples faces as they toiled up the slopes and we descended, the decision to camp at the lake (rather than do it from base camp) definitely appeared to be a good one. A night at around 5000m to prepare for Tocllaraju climb, great views of the mountain in evening light and having no-one else around (after the 40 or 50 tents of base camp) made this a very pleasant experience.
Not very good snow conditions, but a an interesting exercise for acclimatization. Moraine is endless.
The last couple of days of our vacation we decided to climb Ishinca AND use the Refugio. After a month of cooking outside and sleeping on the floor this was a treat!!
Original plan was to go up the SW ridge and back but as we reached the bergschrund we saw the possibility to quickly skirt down and around to the right. Super glad we did that. A much more technical route that had us popping up a gully just below the summit ridge.
From there is was an easy walk down the NW slopes in perfect weather. Up and down in less than 24 hrs was a bit quick. Next time I'll take the time to explore the many bouldering opportunities along the way.