Like many Patagonia seasons previous, this is a busy one with a number of big sends.
The most recent news is the big new route climbed by Quinn Brett, Max Barlerin and Michael Lukens. Called a “mega line” on Pataclimb.com, the new route climbs 13 pitches on the south face of Fitz Roy right of The Washington Route. They sent the route in a day and bivied on the summit. “A great route that, because of its quality, deserves to become a classic,” as stated on Pataclimb.com.
The season started at the end of the Patagonia winter season last October when Marc Andre-Leclerc soloed Aguja Standhardt via a Tomahawk and Exocet link-up, which was the second solo of the peak. On the same trip. Leclerc made the first solo of El Mocho up Voie des Benitiers 5.10 A1 and the third solo of Rubio y Azul 5.10 350m. He also made a free solo of a link-up of Rayuela to Mastica e Sputa WI5 M5 300m.
On Cerro Solo, Colin Haley climbed a new route called El Dragon. On Cerro Adela, Dani Ascaso, Lise Billon, Santi Padros and Jerome Sullivan climbed a new route called Balas y Chocolate WI5+ A2 M6+ 900m up the east face. Back on El Mocho, Martin Marovski and Viktor Varoshkin made the first ascent of The Approach Line 5.10 A2 450m.
On Cerro Torre, Marcus Pucher attempted a winter solo in September, it was the second winter attempt after Haley in 2014. No one has soloed the route in virgin conditions, all solos come after ascents have cleared the way. Pucher made it to the Elmo before retreating.
Most of the season’s big sends have been on Torre Egger. Korra Pesce, Roli Striemitzer and Tomy Aguilo made the second ascent of Psycho Vertical 5.10 A3 900m. Their ascent was followed by Inaki Coussirat and Carlitos Molina’s.
Haley made the first solo ascent of Punta Herron and Torre Egger up Spigolo dei Bimbi 5.10 350m and the Huber-Schnarf 5.10 200m in just over 16 hours. Free soloing almost everything, he rope-soloed four pitches on Spigolo and four on the Huber. His roundtrip took 27 hours, a rope, some gear, three litres of water and no stove or bivy gear.
On the same day that I was climbing Torre Egger, a longtime friend of mine from Chamonix, @korra_pesce, was climbing Aguja Desmochada with local Chaltén badass Thomy Aguilo. Korra had a powerful-enough zoom and was thoughtful enough to snap some rad photos of me on the final pitches. Thanks for sharing the awesome photo, Korra! I was woken this morning with tragic news, however… The Chaltén Massif has a way of dishing out everything, the good and the bad, all at once. 😔
On Aguja Pachamama, Gediminas Simutis and Saule Simute climbed a 300-metre 5.10 and named it Ziggy Stardust in memory of the late David Bowie.
On Fitz Roy, Haley and Andy Wyatt made the fastest car-to-car summit with their fast send of the Supercanaleta. Also on the Fitz, David Bacci and Matteo Della Bordella made the second ascent of the Pilar Este 5.10 A3 1,200m.
There have also been new routes climbed on Colmillo Central, Aguja Dumba, Aguja de l’S and Hielo Continental.
With a number of strong climbers hoping for good weather and gearing up for new routes, we will surely have more news from the 2015/16 Patagonia season.