Huamashraju West Face granite cracks
Avg: 4 from 1 vote
|Type:||Trad, Alpine, 950 ft, 5 pitches, Grade IV|
|Page Views:||306 total · 8/month|
|Shared By:||Cissa Carvalho on Sep 17, 2014|
DescriptionHuamashraju (5434m) is a seldom climbed mountain that is part of the Huantsán massif, and just one hour away from Huaraz by taxi.
The West face presents a normal route on the right side with several variations, involving snow, ice and mixed pitches.
The left side of the wall presents some very interesting crack system with some routes already opened, also with opportunities of variations and link ups, beautiful dihedrals and oppositions. Some of the routes can be climbed completely clean. All of them lead to the summit snow ridge.
The hardest route is about 5.10, the granite is generally good quality. The hardest thing about climbing these walls is the altitude: the routes start around 5000m (16,400 ft) and end near 5400m (17,700ft), and the face only receives sun after 11 am, meaning you will be climbing mostly in the shade, and it can get pretty cold. Aside from that, you have to cross the glacier to get to the base of the routes, which means climbing with your mountain boots in your backpack.
LocationFrom moraine camp take a left around a swampy area, and follow the trail until the bottom of the moraine. There are some cairns but not just one way up, so find your way to the bottom of the glacier as best as you can (2h-2h30). Cross the glacier all the way to the climbers left until you reach the bottom of the wall, and from there pick your line, there are several options and Casa de Guias has some simple topos with some 5-6 routes on it. Rappel from the fixed anchor on the most obvious line, or rappel from the rocks underneath the summit. From either way, cross the glacier back to moraine and then to camp.
ProtectionThe most classical route has bolted anchor stations.
If you decide to climb any of the routes and rappel from the rock, you have to find the last anchor station on this route, which on seasons with a lot of snow, is usually covered, meaning you will have to walk up to the rocks right under the summit and rappel from there. There are some pitons here and you may have to back up with pro.
Bring a small and medium set of cams, as well as a good assortment of nuts, and some pitons. Bring two 60 meter ropes as some of the pitches are long and 60 meter may not be enough to reach the anchor stations when rapelling the rock, and could present problems if you rappel from bellow the summit since there´s a bergshrund right in the middle.
Also, bring an ice axe in case you decide to go for the summit.