Friday, January 29, 2016

Colin Haley Completes First Solo Ascent of Torre Egger in Patagonia

American climber Colin Haley continues to add impressive accomplishments to his resume. As both a skilled rock climber and mountaineer, he has completed some of the toughest routes in the world in Patagonia and the Himalaya. But on January 19 he only added to his growing list of accomplishments when he managed to complete the first solo ascent of Torre Egger, one of the most iconic and difficult towers in the world.

Located in Argentina's Patagonia region, Torre Egger is a sheer rock face that stands 2685 meters (8809 ft) in height. It is considered one of the crown jewels of rock climbing, often mentioned in the same breath as El Capitan, Trango Towers, or Torres del Paine which is also located in Patagonia. On January 19, after months of planning and preparation, Haley set out to solo that massive tower in what would become an very long day in the mountains.

Alpinist has all the details of the ascent, including the exact route Haley took to the summit, and some of the challenges he to overcome along the way. As you can imagine, it was not an easy climb, requiring 16.5 hours to complete the route. But even after reaching the summit, Colin faced more difficult on the descent. At one point his rope became hung up, and he had to spend several hours bouncing on it to get it to release a few inches at a time. Eventually it gave way, and he was able to finally finish his descent.

The solo of Torre Egger wasn't the only impressive climb Haley finished in Patagonia this month. Alpinist says that he and fellow American Andy Wyatt also completed a speed ascent of Monte Fitz Roy (3405 m/11,171 ft) on January 6, completing that challenge car-to-car in 21 hours and 8 minutes. According to the report, that would be the fastest known time for a round-trip ascent on that peak as well.

These are some impressive accomplishments over a span of just a couple of weeks. Congrats to Colin (and Andy Wyatt!) on a job well done.

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