Climbing at the Cordillera Blanca
Located in the department of Ancash,
the Cordillera Blanca, held to be the Peruvian mountain
climbing capital, rears up on the eastern flank of the
Santa River Valley, in the Callejón de Huaylas
valley. The mountain chain features the largest number
of spectacularly beautiful peaks in the country. The
best-known include: Mount Huascarán (6,768 masl);
Huandoy, with three peaks, all over 6,000 meters; Chopicalqui
(6,354 meters); Chacraraju (6,112 meters); Alpamayo
(5,947 meters) and Copa (6,118 meters).
Some of the advantages of this mountainous area include
the climate (the ideal time for climbing is between
May and October) and access to its mountains, which
give climbers the chance to tackle several summits within
a short space of time.
Climate:Heavy rains from
December to March and a markedly dry season from May
to October, where sunny days post temperatures of 25°C
and freezing nights.
Access: From the city Huaraz,
one can drive to the towns of Carhuaz (32 km / 30 minutes),
Yungay (39 km / 40 minutes) and Caraz (67 km / 50 minutes),
towns which lie at the foot of the massif.
Services: Nearby towns
provide a full range of services, including guides,
porters, rescue services and climbing equipment. Huaraz
features several hotels, restaurants and travel agencies
that organize climbing expeditions.
Climbers can get information in Huaraz on recent climbs
and learn about snow conditions on the mountain. Climbers
are advised to pack plenty of winter clothing, as the
cold and winds are intense in the evening.