Go back to Los Arenales.
Go back to MNHCC.
For our final day, we made the long (2 hours from trailhead) slog up boulder gullies and loose scree fields to the base of the Campanile formation. Our goal was an area classic called Armonica
– about 6-7 pitches long and with climbing up to about 6a+ depending on variation. Though the face is ledgy, the individual pitches offer some very nice crack climbing. And of course there’s a cool summit. Quick and easy descent and an hour or two of soaking up the sunshine at the base (probably the hottest day of the trip) before we headed back down to camp and a dinner. I should mention here that we were always by ourselves on all the climbs we did there.
The following morning, we packed up our camp and drove back to Mendoza for some excellent ice cream, very good steak washed down by some Malbec, and the evening flight home…which of course involved more “technical issues” for both the Dallas (2.5 hour delay…”we’ll tell you in 10 minutes if flight is cancelled – happy New Year”) and the Portland (1+ hour delay) legs. Having only scratched the surface of the classic routes there, we’ll go back; especially since it’s such a logistically easy climbing destination.
Shirley enjoying a Los Arenales breakfast: 2-3K feet of scree and shifting boulders (Dec. 2016).
Shirley starting the first pitch of Armonica on Aguja Campanile (Dec. 2016).
Views of the impressive face of Aguja Charles Webis (Dec. 2016).
Higher on the same fun pitch (Dec. 2016).
Pitch 3 (our 2 actually) of Armonica (or maybe George De La Selva…not sure – the two are variations of each other). Best pitch of the route I think (Dec. 2016).
Higher on the same pitch (Dec. 2016).
El Cohete in profile as seen from high on Armonica (Dec. 2016).
I think this is an off-route pitch midway up Armonica. When we first saw it we were not psyched with the 30 foot OW (nothing bigger than a #3 with us)…turns out there’s a perfect hand crack on the left wall (Dec. 2016).
Shirley high on Armonica (Dec. 2016).
Shirley admiring the next splitter crack and her lead (Dec. 2016).
Shirley starting up another gorgeous splitter crack on Armonica (Dec. 2016).
Is that a short section of wide crack ahead?
View up valley (into the heart of the Andes) from Armonica (Dec. 2016).
OK, maybe just a wee bit of a wide section…
Leading the blocky finishing pitches of Armonica (Dec. 2016).
Summit block looms above (accessed via left)…we accidentally airmailed our one #4 slightly lower on the route. Shirley actually found it once we rapped off but it had developed a slight kink in the axel (Dec. 2016).
Views of Shirley and the Andes from near the top (Dec. 2017).
View of our tent and car from the summit of Aguja Campanile (Dec. 2016).
Shirley arriving on the summit (Dec. 2016).
Our last few trips were mostly bolt clipping and so with that mindset we forgot to pack the cleaning tool…in a pinch, there’s always a way (Dec. 2016).
A flower studded moss (Dec. 2016).
Scree skiing down from Aguja Campanile (Dec. 2016).
Views from the gully leading up to Aguja Campanile (Dec. 2016).
A gaucho in Los Arenales (Dec. 2016).
Packing up on our last day at Los Arenales (Dec. 2016).
An Italian ice cream store in Mendoza – highly recommended (by us & Tripadvisor apparently) and the highlight of our Mendoza time (Dec. 2016).
Mendoza. Church? Shelter? Not sure (Dec. 2016).
Strolling the streets of old town Mendoza (Dec. 2016).
Mendoza light rail (Dec. 2016).
Mendoza airport terminal. It was blazing hot outside and this friendly puppy (with much gray around his muzzle) found a bit of relief inside the air condition building. It was nice to see him not getting ejected.
Looking south during our short flight from Mendoza, Argentina to Santiago, Chile – the Andes stretch on (Dec. 2016).
Not Aconcagua; not sure what peak it is (Dec. 2016).
Santiago airport on the way home. Thought we’d be two hours into our flight by the time midnight struck (New Year’s Eve) but instead were kept in suspense as to whether our flight would be cancelled or not well past 1am. Three out of four AA flights on this trip were significantly delayed due to technical issues – AA stands for Avoid, Avoid…
Go back to Los Arenales