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South African route

First ascent: F.A. Paul Fatti, Roger Fuggle, Art McGarr, Mervyn Prior, Mike Scott, Richard Smithers, 1973/1974. FFA: Nicolas Favresse, Sean Villanueva & Ben Ditto, 02/2009
Area: Patagonia, Group: Torres del Paine, Peak: Central Tower East Face, Height: 2460m, Country: Chile, Region: Paine

The striking 30 pitch South African route takes the clearcut dihedral up the East Face Central Tower, Paine, Chile. First climbed in 1973/74 and graded A4/5.10, it was freed in February 2009 by the Belgian climbers Favresse, Villanueva & Ditto. The trio spent 13 days freeing the route  and stated that the 1200m line contained some of the most amazing free climbing in their big wall career.


Reach the Parque Nacional Torres del Paine from Puerto Natales. From Puerto Natales various bus operators offer open-ended return tickets to the park, almost 120km away. Buses depart at around 7 am and take over 4 hours to reach the park. The main entrance is Guardería & Rifugio Laguna Amarga, at the northern end of the park; all tourists are brought here and they must purchase a park permit and register before entering. Buses then continue to the Sede Administrativa Lago del Toro, from where most depart in the early afternoon for the return trip to Puerto Natales.


From Guardería Laguna Amarga walk to Campamento Torres and then the Torres del Paine Lookout. Details of the trek.


Full trad rack.


- Read the full interview here

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1200m (30 pitches, many 50m long)


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