Huayna Potosi is a complex mountain with a number of sub peaks. Access to the eastern side is very easy from the road over the Zongo pass. Refugios close to the pass offer basic accommodation, food and guiding services – see the Huayna Potosi Area page for details. There are also several high refugios on the normal route, the most prominent being at the high camp and the new Casa de Guias up the rocky ridge from high camp.
The western side is more remote but still easily accessible via the road from Mulluni to Tuni, which crosses 2 high passes. There is a camp in the valley below the pass (Campamento Maria Lloco, 20bs per person) or get dropped off at the 2nd pass and follow an aqueduct up valley. From the Campamento Maria lloco it is possible to drive close to the glacier under the west face via a private road – pay 50bs per vehicle at the campamento and they’ll open the gate for you.
Huayna Potosi Eastern Aspect Overview
1 Route to high camp
2 Normal Route AD- R Dienst, O Lohse 1919
3 South Ridge AD+
4 French Route AD+ T Cardon, A Mesili 1974
An alternative finish for the normal route is:
5 East Face variation AD-
The SE ridge, the next ridge north from the high camp ridge, was climbed in May 1973 by A Daly, N Gillette & J Miller.
Pico Mesili (5596m)
6 Mesili Route TD A Mesili May 1978
Normal Route Finish from the NW
South Summit Routes
1 French route AD+ T Cardon, A Mesili 1974
2 La Vantanita de La Paz D+ V Rimac Dec 2012
3 Bordas-Muñoz AD+ E González, J Hevia, E Rey, J Vázquez 1990
4 South Ridge AD P Barker, F Hendel 1963
Note: This is the left hand skyline in this picture and can be accessed by continuing to traverse from the normal route, below the French Route, or by climbing from the Milluni valley – see route 1 South Face, below.
The first ascent of the face may have been in May 1973 by A Daly, N Gillette & J Miller but their route is unknown.
Pico Mesili and North East Ridge
1 Bicophobia TD+ L Réni, M Beneit, B Vincent August 2010
North Ridge and NE side routes
1 Aspirante AD+ R Gomez, E Unzueta, A von Ungern, S Rojas,J Señoret, J Condori May 2016
North side routes
1 North East ridge upper section. See Pico Mesili and NE ridge route above for the starts.
2 North West ridge AD+ H Ertl, G Shroeder Aug 1972
3 North West face gully route TD+ A Mesili, W Dorf, P Lafargue, H Doisnau Sept 1979
North West and West Face Routes
1 Northwest Face TD A Mesili, W Dorf, P Lafargue, H Doisnau 1979
2 Laba-Hudson Route D+ J Hudson, R Laba 1969
3 Yugoslav Route D+ B Jereb, M Pogacar 1983
4 American Route D- D Harthorne, A Harvard, J Janney, T Thompson 1970
5 Primorska Route ED M Cernilogar, J Humar, S Sveticic, Z Trusnovec 1983
6 French Route D J Affanasief, M Affanasief 1978
7 Vía Del Triangulo D- H Haztler, A Mesili 1971
8 Argentinian Spanish Route D+ C Godó, H Godó, M Pagani, A Enriquez 1990
9 Minero Dynamite D+ G Fuchs, D Osswald July 2015
Note: The Primorska Route climbed directly through the large ice cliff in the centre of the face, possible in the ’80’s but inadvisable now. Most of the West Face routes are probably a little harder in general now with less snow on the face than in the past.
South Face of Pk 5600
1 South West Ridge Route D-
2 Baked D+ A Baker, G Beisly June 2011
3 Happy Meal M4+ TD J Stock, B Cusick Aug 1999
4 The Wormhole M4 WI4 TD C Clarke, R Rauch, G Beisly June 2014
5 Monasterio Route D E Monasterio, G Monasterio 1998
6 Normal Route AD
7 East ridge AD
Italian Peak/Pico Italia Aka Pico Italiano
1 Normal Route AD
2 Little South Face route AD
3 Daniela D+ J Churata and D Evitale 2010, climbs the rock to the snow field to the left of route 4, crossing a big gully and chimney to the snow. Exact line unknown.
4 Beisly-Monasterio Buttress 6b+ TD+ E Monasterio, G Beisly 2012
5 Al Fondo Hay Sitio TD+ R Rauch, R Lobo June 2016
6 Arthritis 6a+ TD+ E Monasterio, G Beisly Aug 2013
A link up of note was the 2016 solo climb of Robert Rauch of Arthritis, carrying on to ascend the South Ridge of Huayna Potosi and descending the normal route in a day.
West Side of Pico Italia
1 Finland route AD+ T Grönlund June 2017
Map of Huayna Potosi Routes and Peaks
View Huayna Potosi Routes in a larger map