Patagonia Towers 2004 Reports
Patagonia 2004 Climbing Expedition- Live Reports
Scott Woolums and Allen will be down in Patagonia doing a short climbing trip into the Bader Valley of the Torres Del Paine. This is a perfect valley for climbing located between the Valle Frances and the Rio Ascensio. It has some of the best lower altitude granite routes in the Torres area and is within a natural weather shadow that allows more climbing days than the upper towers. We plan 14 days here doing a series of new routes on Cuerno Este, Hoja, Mascara, and Espada. Sort of whatever looks good. Should be fun. We'll send in reports and photos from our sat phone to be posted here. Stay updated here on our progress! See more information on our Patagonia Climbing Trips here!
Jan 29th, 2004- Off to Punta Arenas, Chile- Left Oregon for the summer down in Chile! Its the long connections down south, overnight on the plane, change in Santiago and onto Punta Arenas. Been super busy getting ready for this string of 3 trips in row. All of them should really be fun! Climbing in Patagonia, then a trek down here (the Torres and Fitzroy areas), then up to Northern Chile for Ojos Del Salado in March. Watch the reports for our progress!
February 1st, 2004- Puerto Natales, Chile- Arrived in Punta Arenas, met Allen yesterday, and were off to Puerto Natales today. Always fun to be down here in Patagonia. Pretty much at the end of the Earth, or at least South America! Were staying in Puerto Natales tonight, then off to Parque Torres Del Paine tomorrow morning. Natales is a beautiful fishing port, almost always windy, and the last real city before the Torres. We pick up a few supplies, sort things out, visit some friends here and just wander around town some. The climb is getting closer, that's all part of an expedition down here is just getting there! Its the journey and not the destination. But in our case the destination should be pretty cool too! More soon. Scott Woolums Reporting.
February 6th, 2004 Cuerno Este in the Bader Valley, Parque Torres Del Paine- We've had four days of perfect weather - blue skies, hot, sunny, and no wind. It's been great climbing in light gear with hardly any wind all day with the sun shining down on the white granite walls. Conditions like these are unusual for this valley. Over the last three days we've climbed six two-to-five pitch routes on Cuerno Este. There is another group here, one American and two Swiss, climbing Cuerno Este as well. We ran into some Italian climbers at base camp who had just returned from an unsuccessful attempt at climbing Torre Sur. Weather conditions up high are a bit icy. Tomorrow we're going to the upper valley to look at some different objectives up by Espalde. It'll give us a break from the intense climbing schedule we've been on. Camping in the trees has been great, but tomorrow we'll be breaking out above the tree line. Allen is doing great, climbing strong and staying focused. Climbing here is a blast!
February 8th, 2004 Camp 2 in the Upper Bader Valley, Parque Torres Del Paine- Five-star climbing today: two beautiful pitches on really good, clean rock! But then the winds kicked up... There was also a huge rock collapse somewhere nearby. It was out of visual sight, but we saw the dust cloud it created. The sound was thunderous. Millions of Tons of rock must have broken away; it had to have been catastrophic. We are at camp 2 for the night. It's right next to a pristine little alpine lake with a view of all the surrounding towers. Yesterday we hiked to the end of the valley and had a great view of climbers on the South Tower. We've already carried a load of equipment up to Cuerno Norte; but the weather isn't looking too promising... Looks like it may rain tonight. Scott Woolums Reporting
February 10th, 2004 Back at Base Camp Climbed another 5-pitch route today......had a few sprinkles, but it never really rained. Yesterday it was rainy and wet up high with the wind gusting to 70+ mph. Rather than stay up high and chance missing out on climbing time due to inclement weather, we decided to break up camp and get the loads down the valley to Cuerno Este. Cuerno Este is about 1000' lower in elevation, which usually translates to better weather conditions. So now we're back in the trees at base camp. This trip has been tremendous in terms of climbing and conditioning... every day we've been here we've had solid twelve-hour days, either climbing or packing big (50#) loads. The weather has been looking threatning with more wind today, but its staying ok.
February 12th, 2004 Hosteria Las Torres We are safe and sound, out of the Bader Valley and back at the Hosteria Las Torres now. It has been an amazing ten days of climbing with absolutely phenomenal weather conditions for most of the trip, especially in the lower valley. Today while waiting for our ride out of the park we jumped on a couple horses and went for a 2 hr. ride. Perfect day, we rode all around the Hosteria Las Torres and out to the closest lake. Always another adventure just around the corner!! We'll be back in Puerto Natales tomorrow. Punta Arenas the next day.
February 14th, 2004 Punta Arenas Back in Punta Arenas and the excellent Tierra Del Fuego Hotel here. Time for some good seafood and to repack things. Allen is out of here for more Adventures up in Bariloche, Argentina tomorrow while I am getting ready for our "Explore Southern Patagonia" treks. The weather has still been nearly perfect here, some early fog in the morning yesterday but today is very nice. Tomorrow our next trip starts!
Follow the reports Explore Southern Patagonia 2004 Reports. Scott Woolums Reporting. Ciao!