Huaraz is one of the few places we have encountered in South America where rock climbing is not only done, but is prevalent. So you can imagine the level of excitement when I realized that there were tons of Sport/Trad/Top Rope climbs in the Andes, countless bouldering spots, and even a climbing wall at our hostel. Sha-WING! Papi like.
We linked up with 3 other American dudes from our hostel, and headed up to Laguna Lllaca early in the morning. Holy sweet moses was this place incredible. Over the course of 3 days, we climbed on these huge granite slabs, cooked tasty camp food (read: many cans of cold tuna and apples), told some lies around the campfire, gazed at some incredible southern hemisphere stars, and woke up to find thick frost on our tents. This amazing spot was conveniently located above 15,000 feet, making sleeping, hiking, climbing, and even thinking that much more difficult. Dan, Belinda (our Aussie traveling buddy, recently nicknamed ‘BaGrundle’) and I decided to hike out the last day, and found ourselves descending through an incredible canyon, hemmed in on both sides by towering granite walls that were dwarfed by a host of snowcapped peaks. This trip, my friends, did not suck.