No better time to climb

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Trip Report
Rio Negro, Argentina, South America
Date Climbed/Hiked:
Dec 4, 2001
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Created On: Oct 24, 2003
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All I did was sports climbing, and I was looking for some multi pitch trad climb, and probably the best place to go if you are living in Argentina is "Frey". Frey used to be the workshop of men like Jose Luis Fonrouge or Rolando Garibotti.

Living in Buenos Aires, I did not have the time to go by like 14 hs, so I arrange to fly to Bariloche. There Juampi and Leandro will be waitting for me, as they will arrive one day early.
Day before flying I went to an ATM machine to take some money to pay for the ticket and to take with me but it did not have any. After trying like 4 or 5 none of them had money. I was courios to know why... but I was in full preparation for my trip so decided to borrow from friends.

After getting to Bariloche airport, I took a taxi to the parking lot of the Cerro Catedral Ski Center. ( 20 pesos ) From the parking lot is a 4 hour walk up a trail that goes up the Cerro. The trail is well marked and is difficult to get lost. The only problem were those "tabanos" or cow flies that were going around me, but I kept them away with a little branch.

Once I was in the final portion to get to the Refugio Juampi was coming down looking for me, and carried my pack for the last portion. At Frey we had 2 tents outside the refugio, in probably the best place to camp, near a huge boulder that will help to ease the wind.

I learned that my friends did all the walk up to the refugio in the rain the day before, and they went to the refugio to cook to avoid the rain at night and one of their stoves exploded burning, a head lamp, a gore tex jacket and part of the roof of the refugio.

The rest of the day, I relaxed and settle on the camp. The view is beautifull, a lake sourronded by spires with their base covered with white snow.

Day 1 - We climbed the Frey Spire - Nice climb, but the wind was so strong that we could not hear each other. By pulling the rope we were deciding weather to follow...

Day 2 - We climbed the Principal Spire - 2 hours approach, we were at the base by probably 9 AM - The climb is spectacular as well as the approach. You can see the lanin, tronador - Our ( mine ) rope got stucked on the last rapel, and I was ready to leave it behind, but Juampi went out to get it. ( Thanks ! I still got that one...)

Day 3 - Climbed the M2 Spire - Close to camp, very small summit

The place is not crowded but you can find climbers from all around the world. The hut at night is great place for beer, home made pizzas, ( highly recommended ) and pastas - As well as milanesa sandwichs. You can play truco or any other card games and have a good time.

Coming down from the Refugio back to the real world I learned that the banking system in Argentina had collapsed and my savings were trapped there...Probably best timing for going climbing.


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No better time to climb

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