Alessandro Beltrami, Rolando Garibotti, and Ermanno Salvaterra have climbed a new route on the northern side of Cerro Torre in Patagonia. Aside from ascending three ropes they fixed the day before their climb, the trio climbed the route in pure alpine style, a first for a new route on Cerro Torre. They reached the summit late at night on November 13 after two days of climbing, and then descended the following day.
The new route starts on the eastern flank of the peak and follows the dihedral climbed by Cesare Maestri, Toni Egger and Cesarino Fava in 1959, after which Maestri claimed the first ascent of Cerro Torre. Above what is now believed to be Maestri’s high point, they continued to the Col of Conquest, between Cerro Torre and Torre Egger, then ascended the Northwest Face for several pitches until they reached the North Ridge and North Face, which they followed until they could join the 1974 West Face route and continue to the summit. In all, they did 37 pitches to cover 1200 meters. The new route, called El Arca de los Vientos (“Ark of the Winds”), climbs much ground on or near Maestri’s claimed line, but the 2005 team did not find any sign of Maestri's climb above a gear stash very low on the mountain.
For an account and photos of the climb, visit http://www.colmar.it/, open the English version of the site, and click on the Patagonia 2005 logo.