8/10/13 - Japanese climbers Masaru Noda and Yashushi Yamanoi have climbed a new route and the second ascent of another demanding route in Peru's Cordillera Huayhuash. First up was the unclimbed southeast face of Puscanturpa Este, a 17,750-foot peak that had probably only been climbed three times before. The Japanese pair climbed the 2,600-foot, rock face and mixed headwall in a day and a half and graded the route ED3 VII M5+ A1. They summited on June 16.
Yamanoi, 48, had been dreaming of climbing the east face for the past three years. The line lies to the left of a new route climbed in 2007 by Slovenians Pavle Kozjek and Grega Kresel for the mountain's second ascent. Yamanoi is one of Japan's foremost mountaineers and is obviously still a force to be reckoned with, despite losing five fingers and all of the toes on one foot during a climb in Tibet in 2002.
Yamanoi and Noda, 30, then climbed the right-hand couloir on the southeast face of Trapecio (18,579 feet), a 2,300-foot rock and ice wall soloed by Jeff Lowe (via the central couloir) in 1985. The Japanese climbed the right side in 14 hours on June 23, finding steep ice and difficult mixed ground in the upper face (ED3 AI6 M5).
As it turns out, this was the second ascent of this line, which was completed in 2006 by a Spanish climber after his partner died in a rappelling accident on the face. Alone, with no ropes, Miguel Angel Pita finished the climb alone to reach the easier descent route. Read more about this epic ascent and the history of both peaks in Lindsay Griffin's report on the climbs at the BMC website.
Dates of ascents: June 2013