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Mountain Madness Climber

Antisana Team Summits Chimborazo!

MM Guide Gas­par Navar­rete reports on the final days for the Anti­sana and Chimb­o­ra­zo team in Ecuador:

After spend­ing some days in the Illiniza region and climb­ing both Illiniza Norte and Sur, we made our sum­mit attempt on Anti­sana on Decem­ber 21st. We were all wor­ried about weath­er since it had rained almost all day and part of the night. At 11pm we woke up and weath­er was per­fect, we all got ready and left by 12.30am.

Anti­sana (from pre­vi­ous expe­di­tion). Moun­tain Mad­ness photo

Route find­ing on Anti­sana has been always part of the chal­lenge and this time crevasse nav­i­ga­tion made it even more demand­ing. We found our way through them and reached 5550 meters/18,208 feet by 5:45am (great tim­ing!!). Unfor­tu­nate­ly, at that alti­tude we found a very big col­lapsed crevasse that did kept us from ascend­ing the sum­mit ridge or reach­ing the sum­mit. This was very dis­ap­point­ing, as the weath­er was great and, being my third expe­di­tion on Anti­sana this year, I was hop­ing to have a clean sheet of 3 out of 3 sum­mits this sea­son! Two weeks pri­or, this tricky sec­tion had been pass­able but not this time…

Gas­par and the team ascend­ing Chimb­o­ra­zo. Gas­par Navar­rete photo

After some well-deserved rest at Hacien­da Rumilo­ma, the Chimb­o­ra­zo team (Mike, Scot, Jay, and me) head­ed up to the old train sta­tion of Urbina to chill out and recharge bat­ter­ies for the big one… Chimb­o­ra­zo. It was very clear that night and the next day we drove down to Riobam­ba (the name of the Chimb­o­ra­zo’s cap­i­tal) for some lunch and to meet our sec­ond moun­tain guide Hen­ry Moya. We went to bed very ear­ly and woke up at 10pm of the 23rd for our sum­mit push. It was a great climb and we all reached not just the first sum­mit, but the high­est sum­mit of Ecuador by 6:15am on the 24th. Con­grats to every­one on my team and thank you for a great trip!

~ MM Guide Gas­par Navarrete