East Face of Central Tower of Paine Free Climbed

South African Route
Climbing.com has some details on a team consisting of Belgian and American climbers who put up a free climb along the South African Route of the East Face of the Central Tower of Paine in the Patagonia region of Chile. It is believed to be just the third ascent of this route since it was first established back in 1973-1974. It is also the first time that the 4000 foot East Face has been free climbed at all.

The three men, Nico Favresse, Sean Villanueva, and Ben Ditto, spent 13 days on the wall, and according to a post on the expedition’s website, all but two of those days were spent climbing. The weather was bad enough on those two days to confine them to their tent, and it wasn’t a whole lot better the other days either, but they still managed to make progress along a wall that is amongst the most challenging in the world.

For a small sense of the fun they had wile climbing, not to mention some scary views from their portaledge, checkout the video below. Looks like they had a great, time, but watch that last step… Congrats guys!

Kraig Becker

3 thoughts on “East Face of Central Tower of Paine Free Climbed”

  1. Yikes! That “Mason and Pete” video (on the bottom after this one is over) where he plays the banjo while his feet hold him on the rock is a big “wow” as well. True talent!


  2. Yeah, I had a few beers with Nicolas Favresse in december, he loved my idea of bringing chocolate to the everest.
    He first thought he could use my iridium but in fact he didn’t needed it as he wouldn’t be that long without comms.
    He’s a funny guy and I think still amongst the 20 or 30 best rock climbers. Google search on his previous adventure “pakistan project” or “patagonia dreams” with his name, you’ll find more about him.

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