Nico, Seán & Ben Free the East Face of the Central Tower of the Torres del Paine via the South African Route
"Patagonia." It’s a very commonplace word in my life these days, but I get particular satisfaction hearing and speaking of it in the context of our company’s namesake, and with so many great stories drifting our way from that wind-battered microcosm of the alpine climbing world this winter, I can’t help but feel how inspirational a place it truly is.
Many of our ambassadors make the journey south every winter, to El Chalten and Bariloche, then into Fitz Roy, the Torres del Paine and many other hidden gems in the Patagonia region. This season, Colin Haley managed an impressive solo ascent, Kate Rutherford and Mikey Schaefer discovered a new route, and, today, we're stoked to share the news that Nicolas Favresse and Seán Villanueva, along with Salt Lake local Ben Ditto, pulled off a first free ascent of the East Face of the Central Tower of the Torres del Paine via the South African Route. To quote the proclamation of the team, “Free South Africa!” Here's Nico with a recap of the climb:
We (Nicolas Favresse, Seán Villanueva and Ben Ditto) just came back from Torres Del Paine National Park where on the 2nd of February we summitted the central tower via the South African Route. Our ascent is possibly the third ascent of the route and the first free ascent of the east face of the central tower (1200m). We spent 13 days on the wall accompanied by our trusty mandolin, tin whistle and harmonica.