A First Ascent In Northern Patagonia

Last week, Italians Paolo Marazzi and Luca Schiera made the first ascent of Cerro Nora West, via its north face.

This peak erupts from the northern Patagonian Icefield in Chile. Cerro Nora West’s north face is two kilometers wide and features more than 800m of vertical granite.

One of the most difficult things about this area is the approach. Mountain guide and photographer Giovanni Ongaro, Patagonian resident Andrea Carretta, and a gaucho accompanied the two Italians to the mountain. It took almost a week for the party to reach the base camp of Cerro Nora West.

The pair are currently on their way home and we have no details of the climb itself. Even Cerro Nora West’s elevation is unknown. But adjacent 2,460m Cerro Nora was first ascended two years ago by Isidora Larena and Nadine Lehner via the southeast face. You can watch a short documentary about their climb here.

Paolo Marazzi and Luca Schiera at Colonia Lake in Patagonia.

Paolo Marazzi and Luca Schiera in Patagonia. Photo: Ragni di Lecco


The Northern Patagonian Icefield is the second largest in the world outside the polar regions. This large expanse of rock and ice extends 120km from north to south in Chilean Patagonia and has an area of 4,200 sq km. The region still contains a lot of unexplored mountains.

Marazzi and Schiera have been climbing partners for the last decade and had visited Patagonia several times before. They also shared climbs in the Karakoram, the Garhwal Himalaya, the Pamirs, and Greenland.

Kris Annapurna

KrisAnnapurna is a writer with ExplorersWeb.

Kris has been writing about history and tales in alpinism, news, mountaineering, and news updates in the Himalaya, Karakoram, etc., for the past year with ExplorersWeb. Prior to that, Kris worked as a real estate agent, interpreter, and translator in criminal law. Now based in Madrid, Spain, she was born and raised in Hungary.