Tocllaraju Trip Report (#13088)

  • Signed By: Matt Deming
  • Date submitted: August 14, 2004
  • Number of People Encountered:

The weather in the Blancas has really been odd this year, very wet and unpredictable. Summit success on many of the 6000-meter peaks has been low, the main reasons for failure being deep snow and unstable weather conditions.

I Soloed Tocclaraju, starting from base camp in the Ishinca valley at 2 am. I felt very well acclimated after having spent 8 days in Ishinca where I climbed Ishinca, Urus, and waited out various snow & rain storms.

The climb to the summit took 12 hours (from 2 am until 2 pm). To my knowledge, only 4 other climbing parties have made the summit this season. The normal route (Northwest Ridge) presented a few very steep sections with numerous crevasses and Seracs, a fun ice wall with a weak ladder, knee deep snow in spots, as well as a very nice summit pyramid guarded by a large bergschrund. I ascended a very rotten snow & ice rib around the left (east) side of the pyramid to get around the 'schrund. Besides that, the route was sublime. For about 2 hrs while I climbed, the clouds moved in and blanketed the mountain in near whiteout conditions. Then, as I ascended the summit pyramid the clouds parted and I was treated to a nice big break in the clouds and amazing views of nearby peaks and the rest of the Blanca.

Matt Deming.

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