It’s been a whirlwind of a few days following our summit of Pisco on Friday. From the summit of Pisco onwards, we’ve been on the move, starting with a descent to Huaraz, a quick turn-around of packing, followed by a great celebratory dinner at our favorite Peruvian restaurant, Encuentro. Check out the photo of the feast that ensued, with props to Trey for going for the customary Peruvian dish, Guineau Pig (Cuy). He even ate it like a Peruvian, but we’ll omit a few details for our sensitive readers.
A long bus ride back to Lima on Peru’s Independence Day put us in position for our long overnight flights back stateside. I just landed in Los Angeles, and other members of the team are doing the same in other cities across the US this morning. It’s amazing how quick it feels between the time we’re standing on the summit of our final climb, and the time when we’re heading through customs in a blurry travel haze.
Our time in Peru, while it’s physically concluded, it’s a place that will certainly have a permanent impact on all members of our team. The mountains are very much unique on this planet of ours. The climbing is exquisite, the sunrises are the best in the world, the food rich, and most of all, the people are unbelievably welcoming and kind to us visitors. A big THANK YOU goes out to our guides and local staff down in Peru, including Alvorado Adventures guides William and Alfie, long time co-guides of RMI down in Peru. As well as our exceptional chef Emilio and his assistant Roger, who’s 5-star cooking was such a huge part of our experience and our success.
That’s all until next season. Thanks for following along blog fans. Enjoy a couple pictures from our final summit!
RMI Guide Robby Young and your favorite ESS-Peru Team
Robby ... thank you so much for all of the updates. You have some excellent writing skills! And thanks for getting everyone thru unscathed. Enjoy some downtime!!!
Posted by: Bridget on 7/30/2019 at 3:05 pm
We woke up to crystal clear skies last night, which hasn’t been the norm this season here in the Cordillera Blanca. But this beautiful night so happened to coincide with our climb of Pisco…just our luck! It was a really long day to say the least. It’s a tricky walk for the first several hours just to reach the glacier; up and over the moraine, across a boulder covered rock glacier, and up steep trail and slabs, all done in the dark. The stars were out which made for some wonderful views at breaks. A few more hours of dark while ascending snow and ice and the we finally saw some sun…which proved to be one of those classic Cordillera Blanca sunrises that are hard to describe. Just spectacular! A few more hours and we found ourselves just under 19,000’, on the summit of Pisco. We were above a thick cloud deck and the highest peaks of the Range were penetrating the clouds all around us. It was a special moment for this team who put in a lot of hard work and dedication into their climbing adventure in Peru. We stayed on top and soaked it all in for almost an hour before we walked down into the clouds for a long retreat back to Base Camp. All in all, 12.5 hours, Base Camp to Summit to Base Camp. We took the afternoon to get super tranquilo, as tomorrow, our journey back to civilization begins.
RMI Guide Robby Young, Alfie, William and Team ‘Fuerte’
What a wonderful read = can see the stars in the clear mountain air and the calm of the then broken by first light = so well written thank you for sharing God Bless
Posted by: Bobby Brown on 7/28/2019 at 8:12 pm
Congratulations to the whole team for an amazing climb! And thanks to Robby, William and Alfie for getting the team out and back successfully and safely!
Posted by: Barbara W on 7/27/2019 at 12:57 pm
July 26, 2019
Posted by: Robby Young
RMI Guide Robby Young checked in with us after their Pisco Oeste summit bid. They were able to summit and had a good day on the mountain. They are back at their camp for the night and will continue on to Huaraz tomorrow.
Congratulations and well done to all!!!
Posted by: Michelle on 7/26/2019 at 6:39 pm
Wonderful pics! Looks like an incredibly arduous accomplishment. Congratulations to all the team; proud of you and looking forward to hearing the stories!
Posted by: Barbara w on 7/26/2019 at 6:34 pm
Greetings from Pisco Base Camp,
The Spanish word of the day today is ‘Tranquilo’, meaning calm, easy, or chill. That’s what we did today here at 15,200’. We ate omelettes and then took a walk up to the top of the moraine to take a look at our route towards Pisco in the daylight. Back at camp, we dove into crevasse rescue skills in the grass before a ceviche lunch. Delicious as always! The rest of our day, we packed a little, and did some resting as the rain and graupel peppered our tents most of the afternoon. It’s clearing up as we bed down this evening after a chicken dinner and we’re hopeful we’ll see stars when wake up at 11:30 PM to start our climb. Not much else to report on a tranquilo day here at 15,200’. We’ll have more to rave about tomorrow if the mountain and weather allow! Stay tuned party people.
RMI Guide Robby Young, Alfie, William, and Team ‘Seeking Blister Tape Sponsorship’
Learned a new word today “graupel”. Hoping that it went away quickly. Cannot wait to get an update on the summit and more pics. Almost there :-)
Posted by: Bridget on 7/26/2019 at 6:04 am
And we’re back on the horse! We woke up early this morning in Huaraz and took in the last luxuries of hotel life before we loaded our bus and headed down the Rio Santo towards our final climb. It’s a long drive to Quebrada Llanganuco, where Pisco is located, but it’s a stunning sight to take in. We drove past some of the biggest peaks in South America on our way including Huascaran and Huandoy which tower up into the world of 21,000’. We dropped our bags with our donkey drivers and began our 2 hour approach around 11am.
Once we arrived at Pisco Base Camp we took in some warmth inside the Refugio as the snow fell off and on. Our guide team and cook staff got camp built here in this beautiful meadow and we spent the entire afternoon eating, no joke. After dinner finally was finished, we made our way to tents for a good nights sleep. Tomorrow, we’ll do some crevasse rescue training, take a short hike to the top of the morraine above camp, and pack for our big day on Friday. We’ll be in touch, as always.
RMI Guide Robby, Alfie, William, and Team ‘One-to-a-Tent’
Praying all of you make a safe climb. Go Trey!!!
Posted by: Phylis Craig on 7/26/2019 at 4:31 am
July 23, 2019
Posted by: Robby Young
Hello modern world!
We’re back in the bustling city of Huaraz after a week in the Ishinca Valley of the Cordillera Blanca Range. After any significant amount of time in the mountainous wilderness, even if just a week, it is certainly a shock to the system to return back to the modern world, especially when it’s in the form of the chaotic city of Huaraz. With that chaos, however, comes showers, cervezas, real beds, warm temps, and flip flops! I’d say that it’s nice to eat real food, but our reality is that we’ve been eating better in the mountains than most do in the cities (no joke)! That’s all thanks to our wonderful cook from Alvarado Adventures, Emilio, once a guide here in the Range, and now a mountain chef extraordinaire that has been taking care of RMI teams for as long as we’ve been climbing in Peru.
We had some great successes this week in the Ishinca Valley. We went through the (sometimes) painful process of acclimatizing our bodies to high altitudes, and we were able to successfully summit two beautiful mountains; Ishinca (18,143’) and Urus Este (17,782’). The mountains and glaciers here are quite dry this season, which made for more interesting climbing, and more challenging, than our other trips down here. Our team attacked that challenge with an ‘enthusiasm unknown to mankind’, and were able to accomplish some personal goals and set new altitude records in the process.
Tonight, we’re just relaxing city-side at the wonderful Hotel Andino. We’ve got a little bit of repacking to do, as tomorrow morning we set out for our third and final climb of the trip; Pisco Oeste. We’re looking forward to spending the next 4 days in the Llanganuco Valley and giving our bodies and minds another test of endurance as we look to approach the 19,000’ mark and climb the beautiful west ridge of Pisco. We’ll keep you updated on our progress. For now, enjoy some pictures from our most recents adventures in the Ishinca Valley.
RMI Guide Robby Young, Alfie, WIlliam, and Team ‘Showers and Flip Flops’
Looks like a tuff climb. I know you could do it Trey. You’re up to the challange.
Posted by: Phyllis Craig on 7/25/2019 at 7:48 am
Congrats Paul! I’m stoked you went back and looks like a summit or two. :) Enjoy Pisco! It’s amazing!
Posted by: Rue Beyer on 7/23/2019 at 9:30 pm
July 22, 2019
Posted by: Robby Young
Another day here in the Ishinca Valley, and another summit for your ESS-Peru Team! Around 9:00am this morning, we stood on top of Urus Este, around 17,800’, after a beautiful evening of challenging climbing where the team gave it a huge effort! It’s a lean snow year here in the Cordillera Blanca and the route was bit rockier than normal, but the team managed that challenging terrain exceptionally well. The weather was so nice on top that we were able to spend almost 45 minutes enjoying the views of the surrounding peaks and turquoise blue lakes that the Cordillera is famous for. We returned back to camp midday to a wonderful lunch, as usual, and took the afternoon to rest, recuperate, and enjoy our last day here in the Ishinca Valley after a week of calling it home. Dinner is almost served this evening, and we’re looking forward to catching a night back in the comforts of our hotel in Huaraz tomorrow evening. Shortly, we’ll find ourselves headed back to the hills for a closing climb to end our program with a bang! We’ll touch base from town tomorrow, and we’ll send some pics!
RMI Guide Robby, William, Alfie, and Team Summit!
Another summit conquerd. Congratulations Trey. Enjoy being back in civilization.
Posted by: Phyllis Craig on 7/23/2019 at 12:28 am
Love these posts! Congrats on another summit. Can’t wait to see the pics.
Posted by: Bridget on 7/22/2019 at 6:35 pm
July 21, 2019
Posted by: Robby Young
Greetings from Ishinca Base Camp,
Today was all about well-deserved rest. We all woke up feeling good, despite being a bit stiff from our big climb of Ishinca yesterday. As usual, our cook, Emilio, had us covered and treated us to fried eggs and bacon to get our joints all greased up and ready to do some training today. Bacon is obviously amazing, but bacon at 14,200’ is out of this world!! Sign up for Peru 2020 and you’ll see what I mean!
We kept moving today and covered some important climbing skills, including anchor building, rope travel and rigging, and finally took our game to the Base Camp climbing crag and learned how to rappel with an extension rig. We’re all happy for the day to recoup, and we’re now in the middle of an afternoon siesta as the daily showers have started pidder-pattering on our tent fabric. We’ll likely see another delicious feast for dinner tonight before an early bedtime in anticipation of our climb of Urus Este that begins tonight. We’re amped and ready!
We’ll let you know how it goes tomorrow!
RMI Guide Robby Young with Alfie, William and Team ‘Papas Fritas For Life’
July 20, 2019
Posted by: Robby Young
Oh what a glorious day! Your favorite ESS-Peru Team summited Nevado Ishinca! The air was thin up at 18,143’, but we were prepped and ready for the challenge. The clouds draped over the surrounding 20,000’ peaks but we spent the whole day in the sun with just a light breeze that kept us in puffy layers. We had a great day and enjoyed about an hour on the summit before we made our way back to our Base Camp where a feast awaited us. The team enjoyed some Coca Colas and some foot soaks in the river this afternoon while we recovered and we’re now tucked into sleeping bags once again. We’re going to lay low tomorrow and train here at Base Camp before our second climb of the trip goes down on Monday. Until then, stay classy out there in the real world. We’ll fill you in tomorrow on our rest day.
RMI Guide Robby Young, Alfie, William and Team Pato Alpino
Congratulations! I can’t wait to hear about the next climb!
Posted by: Lindsey Fisher on 7/21/2019 at 1:44 pm
Thrilled you all made the summit and enjoyed the day. So proud of you Trey.
Posted by: Phyllis Craig on 7/21/2019 at 8:31 am
July 19, 2019
Posted by: Robby Young
Some good hard rewarding work went into our day today. We pushed our bodies up to a new altitude of 16,300’, with acclimatization in mind, as well as a goal to access some glaciated terrain to get our crampon and rope skills game on. We did a lot of breathing and a lot of moving around after an early start, with the intention of getting back to Base Camp by mid afternoon. A siesta was certainly in order because tonight, finally, we’re going for a summit (weather permitting)!! We’re excited the time has finally come, a week into our Peruvian adventure, that we can put the hard work and acclimatization to work. Ishinca has an 18,143’ summit and the route looked like a bunch of fun from our training site today. We’re getting up in the middle of the night tonight, but we’ll check in tomorrow and tell you all about it. For now, a hot dinner is on the table as usual, so we’re out!
RMI Guide Robby Young and Team ‘No tengo hambre’
Hope the weaher held so you all could get to the summit. Good luck!!
Posted by: Phyllis Craig on 7/20/2019 at 5:20 pm