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