Pikatua-south (winter)

Page Type
Pyrenees Atlantiques / Navarra, France/Spain, Europe
Route Type:
Basic Snow
Time Required:
Half a day
F+ (Easy sup)
Rock Difficulty:
Class 4

Route Quality: 3 Votes

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Pikatua-south (winter)
Created On: Jan 15, 2006
Last Edited On: Jan 4, 2007


In winter the road of Puerto de Larrau is closed in the point of station of ski cross country of Abodi, in the col Ollokia and the normal route start in this point. The route with snow is very different and I think it's very important the description for evitate some accidents. The people that visit this mountain of "only" 2017 meters in summer they don't believe the hard climb in winter. The snow remain a lot of time and the possibility of hard snow and ice is normal. The access to final pyramid had a lot of cold days an ice climb of 40-45º for 30 meters!!! (and the fall is very long).

Route Description

Trailhead: little parking in col Ollokia (1369m)
Slope: 650m.
Time: 2h30 to summit +2h to descend.
Epoch: December to february.

The normal climb in winter leave the road covert for the snow (many days had the lines of sky cross country and you don't walk for it, as well it's more fun the line of summits of the ridge). With the road in left side we climb the little peaks of right side, initially the easy Pikatua (1401m) with spectacullar view of valleys of Belagua-Echo. After a little descent we cross over the wide summit of Orbizkar (1599m) descending to the col over the tunnel (generally you don't see the position of tunnel from the ridge). We turn to NorthWest to get under the east ridge to reach the area near of the rocks of Ori Txipi. We walk horizontally leaving the rocks and the vertical coulouirs with snow of Ory Txipi (50º), it's not a good idea, it's better the walk searching a route less vertical to west direction. This walk it's exposed and the fall is great but normally with crampons and ice-axe is safe, reaching the final of rocks of Ory Txipi (or Orittipia) to turn to north. This is an easy walk without slope to reach little by little the bottom of pyramid.
The climb of final pyramid had only 50 meters but many winter days had a lot of hard snow with 45º and an good use of winter material is neccessary. The summit is an spectacullar place surronding for a wide landscape of white peaks.
The descend it's for the same route but the pyramid it's very impressive to descent with the view of the fall of the full south face (400 meters).

Essential Gear

Crampons and ice-axe. Sun-glasses (wind-glasses some days).
It's possible the climb with ski in horizontal traverse below the normal east ridge to the bottom of final pyramid, but generally you need the crampons for access to the last ramps to the summit.

Miscellaneous Info

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Pikatua-south (winter)

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