Expedition, mountains, routes

Bolivia 2001

Bolivia is located in the centre of South America. The western part is in the Andes mountains, with countless peaks. This area is also called the New Himalaya. In the south there are many volcanoes, with their characteristic cone shape. Sajama is one of them and with 6,549 meter also the highest peak in Bolivia.

Around La Paz, in the north, you can find the Cordillera Royal, with a lot of high peaks, steep faces and razor sharp snow and ice ridges. The Sajama is the only mountain we have planned to climb outside the Cordillera Royal, the royal mountainrange!


We (Boris and Ramon) will head for Bolivia on the 5th of July. After 3 flights (total flight time 18 hours), we will arrive early in the afternoon in Bolivia. We will not fly straight to La Paz (at 4000 meters altitude), because of the risk of altitude sickness. That is why we will stop in Santa Cruz. Santa Cruz is located more to the east and is on a much more pleasant altitude than La Paz. From here, we will go to Sajama. This relative straightforward climb, should make good acclimatisation possible. And we hope that success on Sajama will be a good mental boost for the other mountains.

Afterwards we will go the Cordillera Royal, close to La Paz. The list below shows the planned sequence. We took the location of these mountains in account. Some of them, can be climbed from the same base camp. We also took the technical difficulty in account. We want to start on the easiest routes and then gradually shift to the more difficult routes. We have added the Chachacomani to the list, just to have an alternative in case an other climb turns out to be impossible.

Mountains & Routes

Mountain Height Route Grade * Wall
Sajama 6,549m normal II  PD 45°
Illimani 6,439m normal II PD 50° 1,000m
Huayna Potosi 6,088m E-wall III AD+ 55° 300m
Chachacomani 6,074m S-wall II AD 55° 800m
Chearoco 6,127m SW-pillar III AD+ 60° 1,300m
Ancohuma 6,427m W-wall II AD 60° 650m
Illampu 6,368m SW-ridge III- AD 65° 800m


* Explanation of the difficulties:

  • II = +/- 50 to 60 degrees steep ice (American valuation)
  • III = +/- 60 to 70 degrees steep ice (American valuation)
  • PD = Peu Difficile, fairly simple route (French valuation UIAA)
  • AD = Assez Difficile, fairly difficult route (French valuation UIAA)