La Esfinge (The Sphinx) is a 2000ft granite formation high on the northern side of the beautiful Quebrada Paron (Paron Valley). This is by far the most popular rock climbing in the Cordillera Blanca. The original 1985 route is by far the most popular route however there are many other quality routes on the formation.
Like most big walls there is a variance of rock qualities however in general la Esfinge is known for its quality granite climbing.
Most climbers attempt routes in the winter (north american summer) dry season. Since it's location is close to the equator the days do not vary much but the summer brings more precipitation in from the Amazon basin during the rainy season.
Most climbers begin expeditions in Huaraz where ample supplies and climbing goods can be purchased. From there it is possible to either take collectivos and/or taxis into the Paron valley.
From the Paron lake you begin walking back down the road toward town for a 100 yards or so. A faint climber's trail will head off right (north) over a water drainage ditch. There are several paths that weave their way up through the pampas grass. The burros cannot travel up these trails but porters are available for hire in the valley.
A 2-3 hour hike will get you to basecamp just as the formation comes into view. The basecamp is a nice large flat area with water available about 50m away. From there the base of the wall is a relatively flat 45 minute hike through a boulder field.
Descent: (1-2 hours)
Walk down the ridge from the summit to a low spot in the ridge marked by white quartz cairns. 3-5 rappels. It appears there are rappel stations for single rope raps however some of these are very poor bolts and slings. Double rope raps would probably be recommended. Below the raps make your way to skiers left to access a loose talus slope.
1 Total Routes
['4 Stars',1],['3 Stars',0],['2 Stars',0],['1 Star',0],['Bomb',0]
Browse More Classics in La Esfinge
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for La Esfinge:
Featured Route For La Esfinge
The Original Route 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ E3 5b
: South America
: ... : La Esfinge
By far the most popular route on the formation, this route offers generally good rock in a spectacular setting. There are some dirty sections and climbers should think of this as more of an alpine route than a Yosemite style free route. It also has several pitches where protection is sparse and poor but this is generally on easier terrain. Traditionally the route receives a rating of 5.11c however many climbers including this poster believe the grade to be much lower.Pitch 1: 30m 5.8 Climb up...[more] Browse More Classics in International
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BETA PHOTO: La Esfinge from Basecamp
BETA PHOTO: Descent requires from 3-5 rappels from low point o...
60 sec exposure from La Esfinge basecamp. The Huan...