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Routes in Santa Cruz Valley

Alpamayo French Direct T WI2 Steep Snow
Artesonraju North Ridge AI2-3 Steep Snow
Quitaraju North Face Direct Steep Snow
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Type: Ice, Snow, Alpine, 3200 ft, 4 pitches, Grade IV
FA: unknown
Page Views: 2,624 total · 49/month
Shared By: Cissa Carvalho on Jan 8, 2014 with updates from Chris C.
Admins: Tony Yeary

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Description [Edit]

Artesonraju´s North Ridge (alpine D) is one of the most classic routes on the range, and makes for a worth while climb if you´re in the Santa Cruz valley for Alpamayo or Quitaraju.

From moraine camp, a 20 minute walk leads you to the entrance of the glacier. Glacier itself varies a lot from year to year, but expect to encounter traga-hombres and moderate steep ice from the beginning. Glacier is usually entered from the right, a long traverse leads you to a short and steep, 80 degree step. From there traverse diagonally to the right at about 60 degrees, cross some crevasses, another traverse to the left and finally, gain the 240 m wall at about 70 degrees snow and ice. 4 pitches and you reach the summit ridge, and about 30 minutes on exposed ridge lead you tot he summit. Descend the same route.

Protection [Edit]

Conditions vary from year to year, and the technical portion may require sometimes pickets, sometimes ice screw. Ask around conditions and , and two 60 meter ropes.
Chris C.
Seattle, WA
  AI4-5 R
Chris C.   Seattle, WA
  AI4-5 R
2017 update of the route:

It is generally agreed upon that the route is now a D+. (Yay global warming!) Most of the climbing is in the AI3 range, with a lot of vertical meters to cover. We simulclimbed the route, as pitching it out would probably increase the required time by 5+ hours. If you were to actually pitch this route out, it would probably be along the line of 15+ pitches. There are also a couple sporty ice moves (AI4ish) higher up on the route, but nothing too crazy. The last bit to gain the summit ridge is a very brittle snow bridge with a lot of exposure, this seems to be where most parties stop - it is for this section that I give the route an 'R'.

Most locals seem to refer to this route as the "North Face". Take beta with a grain of salt, we got a lot of "it's impossible" feedback in Huaraz and at BC. We heard everything - chest deep snow for 200m, a huge crevasse at the summit, a ridiculously corniced ridge, and a 50m deep crack in the ridge.

There are a few spots for tents at Morrain Camp. Generally there aren't many folks up there, if any. However, if there is a commercial expedition (I know of only 1), they may sit on all the spots for quite a few days. We had to dig out a new spot for ourselves to make room. The hike from BC to MC is kind of a pain, stay on the prominent ridges, it's easy to waste energy following the cow trails below. I've heard that you can pay a couple hundred bucks for a porter to take your backpack up as well. (I have no idea where you would find a porter, but BC if full of trekking parties and you can probably ask around there. A few hundred dollars sounded expensive for the area to me, so if you actually want to do this I'd start bidding at a much lower price.)

Protection & Gear
Regarding protection, safety, and gear, you'll need plenty of pickets if you want to rap the majority of the route if there aren't any already placed - 6-8 would be reasonable and you'll still probably Feb 26, 2018
Chris C.
Seattle, WA
  AI4-5 R
Chris C.   Seattle, WA
  AI4-5 R
You can find my full detailed account of my 2017 summit climb here:… Feb 26, 2018

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