Huayna Potosi

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Huayna Potosi Trip Report (#22459)

  • Signed By: Sven Bugarski
  • Date submitted: January 16, 2014
  • Date(s) climbed: 26.06.2002
  • Number of People Encountered:0-10 people
  • Recommend to a Friend: Highly

Although I climbed that mountain already a while ago, I still remember it very well. It was a fantastic tour that I did with an individualized itinerary.

As probably most climbers in the area do, I first spent a couple of days in La Paz at altitudes between 3600m and 3800m above sea level. This is usually not enough to head straight to a 6000er mountain, so I took an organized tour to Chacaltaya (which was cheap) and after climbing that 5395m high mountain I did not return to La Paz like the other tour participants, but just stayed at the hut at 5260m not far away from the summit of Chacaltaya. There I stayed for the night, which was not very comfortable and I also felt some high altitude symptoms. However, I could still sleep fairly well and felt much better the next day. Then I descended to a large valley lying between Chacaltaya and Huayna Potosi, which I crossed to the house of a mountain guide at the foot of Huayna Potosi.

For a small fee the mountain guide let me sleep in his house at around 4600m of altitude and the next morning I felt ready to go up Huayna Potosi. We ascended up to a camp at around 5300m in the glacier, where we put up tents. The night was clear and incredibly cold with temperatures reaching to below -15°C, maybe even below -20°C. It was hard to leave the warm sleeping bag at 2am or so in the morning, but I did so and went up with the guide to Huayna Potosi summit in the dark hours of the early morning.

We were a little bit too fast and reached the summit just before sunrise. It was so cold (-20°C with heavy wind) that there was no chance to stay any longer on the summit than a few minutes. Well, at least it has been a successful tour and all the time the sky was clear and views on great when going down the mountain.

The ascent is a walk-up most of the time except the very last section to the summit, which is so steep that one has to go up using hands and being secured properly.

Huayna Potosi Trip Report Index