After a short night in the little lama town of Quetano Chico, we were up at 4am, drove across streams and bumped up the old mining road to the base. Eventually snow choked the road at some ruins, but at 5,250 meters, we figured we had drove enough and should start walking. There are big snow fields on the upper part of Uturuncu and we donned our snow gear and set out in the dark. At first we followed the road around the left side of the peak towards a saddle between the two summits, the right or north-west summit is the highest, though it is hard to tell from the saddle. Right before the saddle we put on crampons and charged up the snowfield (well maybe charged is a bit strong, more like 8 steps then a rest, 8 steps then a rest.). Above 18,000' I can really feel it and have to rest often but only for a count or two, I push on before my body decides I am resting. I chose to climb through some cliffs and bogged myself in deep snow at one point, just to make it interesting, my brother went around and had good footing all the way. We reached the summit in 3 hours and back down in one. With a half hour break in the blasting wind and cold of the summit (purely because I LOVE to feel the raw power of wind and cold, I know it's twisted) we were back at the vehicle in 4 1/2 hours.
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