FKT: Jenny Abegg - La Vuelta al Hielo (Chile, Argentina) - 2022-02-23

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Total time
15h 29m 58s
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What a rad day! I had perfect, windless weather (albeit a bit too hot at times) and very exposed glacier conditions, with just a little fresh snow left over from the last storm. My gear consisted of a pair of running shoes, trekking poles, BD microspikes, wind pants, a wind jacket, emergency down jacket, hydration bladder, lightweight harness and carabiner (and a backup), and inReach. And of course, all the snacks. 

I felt confident doing this route as a solo mission, but I think it's important to say that it's safest done as a team. And it might be important as well to say that I am more of a mountain athlete than a trail runner, with years of experience climbing in alpine environments, including the North Cascades, the BC Coast range and Bugaboos, and the Alaska Range. What's more, I had spent two seasons in El Chalten as a climber before coming to attempt La Vuelta al Hielo. Of course no experience is a perfect safety net, but I trusted my ability to judge whether or not to continue each step of the way—and it's always possible to turn around. I also brought an inReach and had rescue insurance from the Austrian Alpine Club (much more reliable than what the AAC provides), although the goal of course was to not have to use them. I write this because I don’t want to take anything away from anyone who chooses to complete this route in a less “disaster style” style—going as a roped party on the glacier is completely respectable and impressive, especially given the extra weight of the gear and the need to coordinate your speed with your partner's. To each their own!