On the list of the Seven Summits, Aconcagua is second only to Everest in height, but it is one of the less technical mountains to climb. This peak also has one of the richest histories of the Seven, at one time named Ancocahuac, or “White Sentinel,” by the ancient Incas. Inca remains have been found as high as 17,000 feet on Aconcagua, though whether Incas ever reached the summit remains a mystery.
An attempt of Aconcagua is an exceptional way to learn how one’s body reacts to “extreme high altitude,” as heights over 5,500 meters are defined by medicine. At 22,841 feet (6,962 meters), the summit of Aconcagua has approximately the same oxygen density as the top of Denali, or Camp II on Mt. Everest. Yet on Aconcagua’s Normal or Polish Glacier Route, all of this altitude can be gained without the monster crevasses of Alaska or the otherworldly permit fees of the Himalaya.
This is a perfect trip for those who aspire to climb Denali or other Himalayan giants. Aconcagua is slightly less physically straining than expeditions to heavily glaciated mountains, and we will be unhindered by ropes, harnesses, or sleds full of gear. But an expedition of this magnitude is still a great challenge of fitness, endurance, patience, and mental stamina. For many climbers, Aconcagua is both a lifelong goal and a stepping-stone.
Mt. Aconcagua rises out of the desert plains of the Andes, right along the boarder of Chile and Argentina. A two-day hike to Base Camp is all it takes to enter a true high-altitude mountaineering environment. Team members will get lots of experience with expedition logistics and packing, camp building, cold weather climbing, and acclimatization. Using the practice of climbing high and sleeping low, we will ferry gear from base camp up to three higher camps, allowing our bodies to adjust to the thin air by taking a slow, safe pace.
Please contact us if you would like to setup a custom Aconcagua climb.