Ascent of Volcán Chimborazo on 2019-11-03

Climber: Peter Stone

Others in Party:Alice Caldwell
Paul Griffiths
Helen Harris
Ashley Rubens
Jaime Avila
Marco Castillo
Mauricio Beltrán
Paul Guerra
Date:Sunday, November 3, 2019
Ascent Type:Unsuccessful - Turned Back
Peak:Volcán Chimborazo
    Elevation:19029 ft / 5800 m

Ascent Trip Report

Part of a Jagged Globe/Andeanface trip to the mountains of Ecuador. A rewarding mixture of rocky and glaciated peaks in this beautiful and friendly country.

Following warm-up hikes on Pasochoa, Pichincha-Rucu and Iliniza Norte, and successful ascents of both Cayambe and Cotopaxi, we drove to the Chimborazo Reserva de Producción de Fauna with its contrastingly austere environment but nevertheless supporting herds of vicuña. We took a standard approach from the SW parking area but with a high camp at approx 5,300 metres rather than using one of the Refugios. After an early alpine start we took the usual route skirting El Castillo and up to the saddle. Unfortunately with heavy recent snow resulting in wind slab on top of unconsolidated powder it was clear the avalanche risk was high. Sequential snow sampling only confirmed the above, increasingly so as we ascended. Other groups had turned back earlier but our guides turned us around at approximately 5,800 metres despite the residual group of 5 clients going strong on a beautiful clear starlit night. Shame, perhaps not the best time of year to climb. No doubting that Chimborazo is a hugely impressive and beautiful mountain though.
Summary Total Data
    Gear Used:
Ice Axe, Crampons, Rope, Headlamp, Ski Poles, Guide, Tent Camp

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