Tuesday, July 19, 2011

We're all back safe in Huaraz. The weather stopped us at 19000 on Chopicaqui. Details to follow...

Thursday, July 14, 2011

And we are off again... next stop Chopicaqui basecamp.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Basecamp view

Back in Huaraz

We're back in Huaraz for the night. Switching to the Llanganuco Valley tomorrow for an attempt on Chopicalqui (background photo for the blog). If all goes to plan we'll summit on Sunday and be back in Huaraz on Monday.

Our week in the Quilcayhuanca Valley was a great way to acclimate. Our basecamp was in a meadow at 13600 feet with spectacular views of Pucaranra and Chinchey. We shared the 7 mile long valley with only a handful of humans and many free roaming cattle, horses and sheep. While there we did several hikes up to 15000 and a climb on Jatumontepuncu up to 17400, just short of the summit blocked by a massive crevasse and overhanging ice wall.

One thing that immediately struck us was the amount of glacial recession compared with photos from the mid 90s guide books we have. Several hundred vertical meters of glacier has melted away throughout the valley due to global warming. This has made getting on a route the most challenging part of the climb and in some cases such as San Juan made it nearly impossible to climb.

For this reason as well as weather concerns and route finding issues, we opted to forego Chinchey and change our attention to Chopicaqui. A shower, clean clothes, a soft bed and Pisco Sours were also a big influence on our decision.

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Saturday, July 9, 2011

Change of address. Basecamp at S 9 deg 26.410 min W 77 deg 21.135 min

Click here for Google map

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

And we are on our way with clear blue skies overhead...

address for next 12 days

Click here to see where we will be at for the next 12 days.

Chinchey is the righthand 6000m peak just to the north of base camp.
Maparaju and San Juan are the 5300m and 5800m peaks to the east of base camp.

Check out the links to the left to get the exact details...

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Option 2 details

We're heading out at 8am tomorrow morning to the Quilcayhuanca Valley. We'll catch a ride to the end of the road where we'll load up the burros with our gear and trek in 5-6 hours to base camp.

The plan is:
Thursday - rest; hiking
Friday - rest; leave late evening for Maparaju
Saturday - summit Maparaju and return to base camp
Sunday - rest
Monday - move to San Juan high camp
Tuesday - summit San Juan and return to bad camp
Wednesday - rest
Thursday - move to Chinchey camp 1
Friday - move to Chinchey camp 2
Saturday - summit Chinchey; return to camp 2 or 1 or hopefully base camp
Sunday - return to base camp or extra day
Monday - return to Huaraz

I doubt I will have cell coverage so expect no updates until we are back in Huaraz.

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Cordillera Blanca from Japeujiva

Nice day for a hike to 15K

Yummy dish at Hotel Andina

Sunset from hotel in Huaraz

Pile of gear at Lima bus station

Having lunch at 15K on Japrujirca. Beautiful day with an amazing view of the entire Cordillera Blanca range. Will upload photo later.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Option 2

Today we explored Huaraz and discussed our options with a couple of outfitters. The team is very interested in both options 1 and 2. We decided on option 2 because it is more remote and less traveled. We may well be the only climbers on Chinchey this year. The weather is improving with scattered clouds and only a few brief showers. After lunch we did a day hike up to about 11,200 to check out some ruins. Tomorrow we plan to make a day trip to Japrujirca.

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Sunday, July 3, 2011

Buenas tardes. After two hard days of travel we have arrived safe and sound at Hotel Colomba in Huaraz.
We've all arrived in Lima. Getting a few hours of sleep at a hostel before catching the bus to Huaraz

Saturday, July 2, 2011


Two thirds of the way to Lima, Chuck and Keith are in Panama awaiting their next flight and filling up on a local beverage. Hot and humid here.
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We're all at PDX boarding our planes heading for Lima, Peru. Keith and I are flying through Houston and Panama City. Kari and David through Atlanta. The adventure begins!