The suc­cess­ful exped­i­tion Monte Buck­land 2012 led us in January/​February into one of the most inhos­pit­able and least explored moun­tain ranges of the world: the Cor­dillera Dar­win. Cor­dillera Dar­win is loc­ated on the south­ern tip of the South Amer­ican con­tin­ent and is part of the archipelago of Tierra del Fuego. The highest moun­tains includ­ing Monte Dar­win* (2.469 m), are loc­ated in the east­ern part of the moun­tain range and have been climbed suc­cess­fully in the 60s and 70s. Due to bet­ter access­ib­il­ity from the start­ing point in Ushuaia (Argen­tinia) respect­ively Bahía Yende­gaia (Chile) this part of the Cor­dillera is more often vis­ited by exped­i­tions than the west­ern part. The west­ern part of the Cor­dillera is almost unex­plored. The main peak of Monte Sarmi­ento (2.246 m) saw until now only one suc­cess­ful ascent in 1956 (Maf­fei, Mauri).

The primary object­ive of our exped­i­tion was to climb Monte Buck­land (1.746 m). Nearby Monte Sarmi­ento, the moun­tain is situ­ated on a remote pen­in­sula only access­ible by boat. Monte Buck­land was suc­cess­fully climbed in 1966 by an italian exped­i­tion, lead by Carlo Mauri, and was never vis­ited again. Our team reached that fas­cin­at­ing sum­mit by a new alpine-​style north face route, fur­ther we ascen­ded two minor peaks of the range formerly unclimbed. The con­stantly incon­stant weather was without any doubt, besides the com­plex logist­ics and the ori­ent­a­tion in the mostly unknown ter­rain, the biggest chal­lenge within this expedition.

* The moun­tain is also named Monte Shipton, in regards to its first ascent. The cited elev­a­tion var­ies between 2.469 m and 2.580 m asl.

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