Mount Everest Foundation
Supporting the exploratory

Chacraraju East

The original plan of this expedition was to make the first ascent of the E face of Chacraraju East (6,001m) in the Cordillera Blanca. However, on arriving in Peru, they learned that the route had already been climbed in 2000 by two Slovenian climbers, who had then both been killed in Nepal before reporting their success. The SE ridge was apparently still unclimbed, but when two very scary days on loose rock and wobbly overhanging ice had only got them two-thirds of the way up, retreat was deemed preferable to death. Powell then returned to the UK so Bullock decided on a solo attempt of the Jaeger route (ED1) on the S face of the mountain. At Pisco base camp he met Kovacs who had exactly the same aim, so they agreed to 'simu-solo' side by side, thus making the best use of the very limited gear that they both carried: 40m of 5mm cord, 50m of 7mm cord plus a limited collection of pegs, wires, krabs and tat. They made good progress, and in a 20-hour single push, they climbed the route, adding a 3-pitch direct finish to the ridge (VI/7) which they called 'Running on Empty'.

June - July 2004
Nick Bullock initially with Al Powell, then with Adam Kovacs from Sweden

Other expeditions nearby