Ueli Steck, a famous Swiss climber, known as The Swiss Machine for his numerous speed ascents all over the world, is considered as one of the world’s top mountaineers. Last month he came to the Cordillera Blanca with his wife Nicole to acclimatise in preparation for their trip to the Himalayas where they aimed to climb Mount Shisha Pangma, one of 14 mountains in the world over 8,000 metres, known as eight-thousanders.
During their stay in the Huaraz region Ueli and his wife spent some time rock-climbing at the Hatun Machay forest of rocks in the Cordillera Negra, as well as completing The Sphinx, the classic 1985 route in the Paron Valley. They also successfully climbed some snowy peaks, such as the world-renowned and challenging Alpamayo, and the easier Pisco, and attempted Artesonraju where they got caught in an avalanche. En route to Pisco, Ueli Steck was refused entry into the Huascaran National Park by the park because he couldn’t produce his Alpine Club Membership Card, and he had to send someone back to his hotel in Huaraz to get the card in order to be allowed to enter the park. Usually we criticise people for not doing their jobs properly, however, in this instance we applaud these guards for enforcing the rules.