Climbing Aneto (3.404m) Pyrenees – Estasen Gully (Petit Black route )
Aneto is the highest mountain in the Spanish Pyrenees and in Aragon, and Spain’s third-highest mountain, reaching a height of 3,404 meters. A team of 4 climbers met in Benasque Saturday PM in order to climb the Estasen Route from the Coronas Glazier.
On Friday night just arriving in Benasque from Lleida, I found that one of my close fiends and climbing partner, was there to compete in the next morning Mountain Marathon, so we met for dinner and somehow he managed to convince me to run with him the marathon the following morning. I agreed to start with him and run half of it, because I thought this was a nice warm up for the afternoon approximation walk to the Coronas Lakes (a 3 hour climb to the base of the Gully). We went to bed early and wake up at 05:00.
Breakfast (quick one) and we were ready to run by 08:00 AM – because I wasn’t registered in the race I did join the group a kilometer down the trail…and we went together for a couple of hours until I realized the rest of the climbing team was already waiting for me back in Benasque with all the climbing stuff, tent and food – ready to start the aprox to the base of the wall.
Back in benasque and re-grouped after a quick shower! and with very tired legs as well.
We left the village by 14:00 and we drove up the Valley all the way up to the start of the trail (Banos del Hospital) where we left the car and hit the trail by foot. Within 3 hours we (and our heavy rucksacks) arrived at the base of the Coronas glazier to set camp for the night. Two tents 5 people and the best views of the Valley. The Aneto peak with the Teampestades ridge on one side and the Maladeta on the other, with a frozen lake (Ibon) in the middle.
Early dinner and chatting and back in our tents for an early start.
04:00 AM – alarm clock goes off and by 05:00 we were already walking. The group of 5 split in 2 and I teamed with Iker to climb the Petit Black route to the Aneto.
By 08:00 aprox we summit. We were the first ones in the Gully and we did a fast ascent without rope, because the ice was in great condition.
Then rather to descent by the “normal” route – where the infamous Paso de Mahoma +4A it, we agreed to descent the Gully using the same ascent route. So, in less than an hour we arrived to our camp.
This was a very light and fast ascent but something we did because the fantastic conditions of the route.
You can follow my training in Strava
Elbrus 2016 Expedition is Sponsored by: