Aconcagua Normal Route 15 Days Trek

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Aconcagua, the highest peak in South America and widely known as highest trekking peak in the world is a popular choice for climbers. Despite the fact that it is not technically demanding peak, the difficulties of the ascent lies in extreme altitude. The best time to climb Aconcagua is during the high season, from mid-December to the end of January. This period usually offers the most stable weather on the mountain and lots of opportunities for successful summit.

Day 1: Arrive Mendoza Airport

The team will meet you at Mendoza airport and transfer you to your hotel.

Day 2: Free Day in Mendoza

Day perfect for exploring the city of Mendoza, which is the centre of wine-making in Argentina. The city is easily explored on foot, with plenty of shops and restaurants, but with siesta time is 14:00-17:00 expect everything to be closed. After the fun day in the city, you will spend the night at the hotel.

Day 3: Mendoza to Los Penitentes

  • Elevation: 700m to 2580m
  • Drive time: 3 hours

Today we transfer you from Mendoza to Los Penitentes, where you may start to feel the effects of altitude. We advise some gentle exercise around the town. You will spend the final night in a hotel before we begin our trek.

Day 4: Los Penitentes to Confluencia

  • Elevation: 2580m to 3400m
  • Time: 4-5 hours

Today we drive from Los Penitentes to the Horcones Valley (2950m) where our permits are checked at the ranger station and we begin our trek by following Rio Horcones to the campsite at Confluencia (3400m).

Day 5: Confluencia to Plaza De Francia to Confluencia

  • Elevation: 3400m to 4050m to 3400m
  • Time: 7-8 hours

Today’s main goal is acclimatization, as we trek the Horcones Inferior Valley to Plaza de Francia, the base camp for all the South Face routes. After that we will return to Confluencia camp for the night.

Day 6: Confluencia to Plaza De Mulas

  • Elevation: 3400m to 4350m
  • Time: 7-8 hours

The hardest day of this trek begins with walk alongside Rio Horcones and by crossing couple of tributaries, en route our base camp at Plaza de Mulas. The final portion of the climb to the Plaza de Mulas campsite is very steep, and therefore quite challenging. This will be our base for our summit attempt.

Day 7: Acclimatisation at Plaza De Mulas

  • Elevation: 4350m

This is the day for resting from the hard climb on the previous days, but also to adjust to the high altitude. You sure you drink a lot of liquids and eat well. The nearby Hotel Refugio Plaza de Mulas, the highest hotel in the world, has showers available, as well as a pay phone.

Day 8: Ascend Cerro Bonete, Return to Plaza De Mulas

  • Elevation: 4350m to 5004m to 4350m

This is the second day of acclimatization at Plaza de Mulas. Today we climb Cerro Bonete (5004m) that will give us a clear view of the route almost all the way to Aconcagua. We will return to Plaza de Mulas for overnight.

Day 9: Equipment Carry to Camp Canada, Return to Plaza De Mulas

  • Elevation: 4350m to 5050m to 4350m
  • Time: 5-6 hours

Today’s goal is to reach camp 1, Camp Canada (5050m), and on this trek we will pass the Conway Stones, named after a 19th century English mountaineer. This trail is particularly hard and steep, as we will carry some of the expedition gear and food to the Camp Canada before return to Plaza de Mulas.

Day 10: Rest Day in Plaza De Mulas

  • Elevation: 4350m

This is the last day of acclimatization at base camp, and it is advisable to finalise your gear and prepare yourself for before we begin our ascent of Aconcagua.

Day 11: Plaza De Mulas to Camp Canada

  • Elevation: 4350m to 5050m
  • Time: 2-3 hours

Beginning of our ascent of Aconcagua starts by moving to Camp Canada. This time is should be much more easy because we already shifted our gear, and we should feel the benefits of two days of acclimatization at base camp.

Day 12: Camp Canada to Nido De Condores

  • Elevation: 5050m to 5560m
  • Time: 4 hours

Today we are heading to a place known as El Nido de Condores (The Condor’s Nest, where we will setup the camp 2. On this path, we will be assisted by porters, who will be carrying most of our equipment.

Day 13: Nido De Condores to Berlin

  • Elevation: 5560m to 5930m
  • Time: 3-4 hours

Today we will climb to camp 3, the Berlin camp at 5930m. This will be our last campsite before attempting the summit.

Day 14: Berlin to Summit to Berlin

  • Elevation: 5930m to 6962m to 5930m
  • Time: 10-12 hours

This is the Summit day. We start early morning, climbing the north ridge to reach the Independencia Refuge (6250m), and from there we follow the route up to a Cresta del Viento ridge. Further we cross the top of the Gran Acarreo to reach the base of the Canaleta. After an hour of extremely climbing we will reach the Cresta del Guanaco, the ridge that connects the south summit (6930m) to the north summit (6962m), and follow the track to the north. On a clear day the view from the summit is amazing, with Tupungato mountain spreading to the southwest. The time we can spend on the summit depends on the weather and the time of day when we reach it, so that we can have safe descend. We will return by the same trail to the Canaleta and camp 3 at Berlin for a celebration and well-earned sleep.

Day 15: Contingency Day

We have included two contingency days in case of bad weather, to be able to reach the summit.

Day 16: Contingency Day

Our second contingency day.

Day 17: Berlin to Plaza De Mulas

  • Elevation: 5930m to 4350m
  • Time: 3-7 hours

Today we descend from Berlin to base camp at Plaza de Mulas. After 3 to 7 hours of walk, the crew will welcome us back with a celebration dinner.

Day 18: Plaza De Mulas to Los Penitentes to Mendoza

  • Elevation: 4350m to 2580m to 700m
  • Trek Time: 7 hours
  • Drive Time: 3 hours

Today we are heading back to Los Penitentesby hard 7 hours walk to reach the park exit. From there we catch our vehicle back to Mendoza and checking into your hotel.

Day 19: Departure

You will be collected by our driver from your hotel and transferred to Mendoza airport for departing flight.

Included:

  • Hotel accommodation in Mendoza as indicated in the itinerary, based on double occupancy. Climbers descending early will incur extra hotel fees
  • 1 night of lodging in Penitentes (dinner and breakfast included)
  • Full board during the expedition (all the meals while in the Park, meals in Mendoza not included)
  • Services of experienced english speaking guides and high altitude porters for shared equipment carries (Guide-client rate: 1/3 – 2/7 – 3/11)
  • All shared equipment for the expedition (Tents, stoves, etc.)
  • Complete base camp services (dining tents, bathrooms, meals, storage)
  • All the transfers in licensed, private shuttles
  • Pack mules for common and personal loads, to and from BC
  • Permanent VHF radio communication
  • High altitude porters for common gear carries. One every four pax
  • We provide all our guides with a professional first aids kit and pulse oximeter for daily updates of acclimatization progress
  • Aconcagua climbing permit
  • Free Internet at BC (limitations apply)

Excluded:

  • International airfares and taxes
  • Personal porters from base camp to high camp and back
  • Meals and drinks in Mendoza. Drinks in Penitentes
  • Personal gear, medications, ground or air evacuations, room services, laundry, beverages, phone communications and items of personal nature, insurance liability, hospitalization or medication of any kind, any other service not mentioned in this condition sheet
  • Any cost incurred by a climber if she or he leaves the trip early (such as mules, transfers, guide, etc). We strongly recommend all participants to buy trip cancellation insurance
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