Karl Egloff and Daniela Sandoval have the best times on the normal route, while Nicolás Miranda has the mark on the 360 degree route. Daniela Calapiña tried in 2017 to be the youngest woman to climb to the top.
The Aconcagua, the ‘Roof of America’, the highest mountain on Earth outside the Himalayas in Asia, will always be a challenge for mountaineers all over the planet. In said colossus, three Ecuadorians make history, one of world records.
The “pichinchanos” Daniela Sandoval, Karl Egloff and Nicolás Miranda have related their names to the meaning of the word deed. The first in that category was Karl Egloff, who on 19 February 2015 pulverized the time that in the speed climbing mode (climbing speed) left the Spanish Kilian Jornet, in a climb-descent by the normal route. The Catalan used 12 hours with 49 minutes (12h49m) to leave his stamp, which in less than two months the Quito broke, covering the route in 11h52m.
Jornet acknowledged the Ecuadorian’s capacity, congratulating him after commenting: “The records are to be broken”. It was the second time Egloff beat him, since in August 2014 he improved the 7h14m Jornet did in Kilimanjaro (Africa) in 2010.
Four years later the ‘equinoccial’ clocked 6h42m. The conquest not only gave the South American the confidence to continue with this type of challenges, but also encouraged others to carry out challenges of this nature. Nicolás Miranda is a very particular case, it was he who drove Karl to venture into mountaineering speed and in tune with that he set a record in the 360 route of the Argentine massif.
This route consists of almost 110 kilometers when linking the Pole Crossing, the Ameghino Crossing, the Guanacos Valley Route and the Normal Route. Miranda did it on February 12, 2017, running in 27h58m what the hikers take more than 15 days at a normal pace and with adequate breaks. “Without a doubt this record in the Aconcagua is the most momentous event in my sports career, after many years of training,” said the capital after signing the feat, an achievement that left behind the 32 hours used by the Argentine Willie Benegas.
And if Nicolás has reason to be proud, the same can be said of Daniela Sandoval, the protagonist of the most recent feat; On Tuesday of this week she recorded the new speed record in Aconcagua. Dedicated to ultramarathons, the Quito was attracted by the performance of Nicolás Miranda and Karl Egloff, from whom she took the inspiration to immerse herself in speed climbing; it is precisely Nicolás who saw the potential in her and convinced her to dare to impose a new female world record in the king of the Andes mountain range.
“It’s a dream that came true, but at the beginning there were many things that were difficult; I had a failed attempt, the weather did not help us, the first time there was a storm cloud; the second time, winds of more than 75 kilometers per hour … a very big challenge, very nice, of a lot of learning “, said the mountaineer to EL TELÉGRAFO.
In his anecdote he includes the celebration of his 27th birthday on January 18, already in Mendoza, ready to fulfill the project together with his mentor, Nicolás Miranda. With a less hostile climate than in the first attempt, made last weekend, last Tuesday he got the reward for his effort and in 20h17m he surrounded Aconcagua from top to bottom, scoring the new women’s world record.
This time is better in two hours and 35 minutes than the one made by Brazilian Fernanda Maciel on February 21, 2016, when she stopped the clock at 22h52m. In the case of Ecuadorian exponents, the enterprises are many, especially because they do not have budgets as high as the athletes of other countries. Fernanda Maciel, for example, is an athlete backed by Red Bull.
Something to overcome in terms of speed hauls is to climb the south wall of Aconcagua, a purpose that Egloff and Miranda did not manage to crystallize. Two weeks ago because of the bad weather conditions. For now that brand is still in the hands of the Frenchman Bruno Sourzac, who in 2002 needed 22 hours to reach that goal. Another pending challenge is that of Daniela Calapiña, who aspires to be the youngest Latin American woman to rise the Aconcagua.
In February 2017 he made his first attempt, but he declined to less than 6,000 meters. The teenager, now 16, has not tried again due to lack of resources, but the project still stands. Now, moreover, he has more experience. Calapiña was born on January 20, 2002 in the San Andrés parish of Guano canton in Pulinguí, is indigenous to Chimborazo and grew up at the foot of the highest mass of Ecuador. He started in mountaineering at age 11; It has crowned the peaks of Carihuairazo (5,018 meters), Cayambe (5,790 meters), Iliniza (5,248 meters) and, obviously, the Taita Chimborazo (6,268 meters). (I)