Pico Austria & Glacier School

With the team so deep in the mountains, we get satellite text updates every day. Unfortunately for us here at home we don’t get to see many pictures yet. Those will come once they return from the mountains and we’ll be sure to post them to our blog and social channels.

On Friday, August 3 the team climbed Pico Austria. Standing at 17,438′ / 5315m this “little” peak is nothing to shake a stick at. It’s higher than any peaks here in the contiguous U.S. by nearly 3,000′ / 1000m! Our team however uses it as training to get acclimatized. The climb is not technical at all and is more of the hiking variety – a great test of altitude to get the climbers bodies ready to tackle the higher and more technical peaks to come in the near future.

Following their climb of Austria, the next day (Friday) the team did a day of glacier skills training learning about crampon technique, rope travel on glaciated terrain and ice axe work. Word from the team is the energy and stoke are high and they are ready to go climbing. Our lead guide Topo Mena reported that weather has been weird and asked us for an update. The report was for a pretty good storm to hit them the next day

Ice Climbing, Stormy Weather, Pequeño Alpamayo Tomorrow

Saturday, August 4 the team went out for some additional training and were able to do some ice climbing near camp. This training compounded on the skills they learned on Friday and served as more great training for the following big climbs they’ll be undertaking. Saturday night the storm arrived as expected with strong winds and snow. They received 1″ or 3cm of snow in camp while the glacier higher up received as much as 7″ or 20cm of new snow. Topo reported winds on Sunday morning were as strong as 30mph or 50km h.

Later on Sunday August 5 the sky cleared up and winds began to die down. Topo reports that tomorrow they will be attempting 17,618′ / 5370m Pequeño Alpamayo. This climb is not much taller than Pico Austria but it will be more technical. A fantastic climb awaits our team with good weather. Following their summit bid the team will come all the way back to La Paz to regroup for the next couple of climbs on the itinerary – Huayna Potosi and Illimani. Good luck team!

For more information on our Bolivia expedition, or any of our other international expeditions check out our website. For any questions call our office at 877-873-5376 or send us an email  info@alpenglowexpeditions.com. We hope to climb with you soon!