10 November 2011
Beto Pinto Toledo, UIAGM Mountain Guide of Peru with Rolando Morales Evangelista aspiring Mountain Guide have opened, last october, a new route on a virgin Peak named Tunsho South 5560m in the Central Range.
Name of the route: “CHINITA”
Difficulty: TD+, 60, 70, 80, 90º ice and rock
Equipment, 2 rope of 60m, rock gear, 3 ice screws, 10 snow screws
TUNSHO SOUTH 5560 MASL
Last year when I was in The Central Range I climbed to the summit of Norma Mountain and from there I saw the peak of Tunsho over a really interesting wall of rock and ice. I got curious and, on my return to Huaraz, I set about investigating its history in books and on the net.
As it turned out no-one had ever climbed the peak before. One Peruvian expedition had previously reached the northern summit, via the west face and another expediton of the DAV was intended to try for the north ridge ,. But unfortunately an accident on the north ridge prevented them from reaching their goal.
Having established that this was a virgin peak,, my interest grew and I decided to investigate a possible approach. With that in mind I traveled to Huancayo with my friend Rolando last October 14th. There we met with some friends who helped us gather more information. I was also helped by the Park Director Marco Arenas who put me in touch with Gonzalo Quiroz, the director of the Reserva Paisajistica nort Yauyos Cochas, who kindly provided transport to azul cocha 4400m.
On the 16th we took the four hour drive and made camp by the lake (4700m). On day two we took some equipment to the glacier and checked our route, deciding upon the canalet on the half of the wall. On the 18th we got up just after midnight and were on are way to the glacier by 1 am.
After 45 minutes we were at the glacier and kitted up to walk over it towards the wall, passing several crevasses and areas of loose snow on the way. We reached the wall after about two hours and began our climb using some of the rock gear.
The first section was difficult and took over an hour because there was a fresh snow roof followed by 90º of snow frost with some rock climbing. Unfortunately the bud type rock wasn’t good for making protection. Thankfully, the condition of the snow improved higher up, with some areas of blue ice and we progressed relatively rapidly over this mid-section.
The last two pitches were difficult again though thanks to an abundance of loose snow at 80-90 º and we lost a lot of time on the final section. We reached the summit at about 9 am and, having caught our breath and taken in the view, rappelled via the south ridge. We did 3 rappels down to the col and from there tried to head for the other summit. But unfortunately the weather conditions deteriorated and after climbing about a hundred meters we decided to turn back.
We headed back down to the col and continued our rappel, returning via the route we’d used earlier that morning. By the time we got back to our camp at 3 pm the weather was perfect and we had some stunning views. The next day we walked down to Azul Cocha where we got a car back to Huancayo happy after a successful trip and a new route.
Beto Pinto Toledo