First Free Ascent of the South African Route (5.12c/7b+), Torres del Paine, Chile

Photos by Nicolas Favresse, Ben Ditto and Sean Villanueva - The Belgian-American team of Nico Favresse, Sean Villanueva, and Ben Ditto have completed a 13-day, all-free ascent of the South African Route on the east face of the Central Tower of Paine in Chilean Patagonia. This is the first free climb on the 4,000-foot-plus east face. The South African Route was established during the winter of 1973-74 at 5.10 A4, and is believed to have been repeated only once before. Read More. Click here to read the trip report and see videos from the expedition.