Aconcagua Adventure

South America > Argentina

A 19-day expedition to climb the highest point in the Americas

The Aconcagua Adventure is the ultimate mountaineering experience. From the moment you land in Mendoza, Argentina the views are unlike any other place on the planet. Once we arrive in Mendoza we will spend the first night enjoying this quaint little city along with the unique culture and cuisine it has to offer. We will stay at the Hotel El Portal Suites in Mendoza and have a program brief that evening before we depart for the mountain.

The following morning we will be picked up in our private transfer and travel to the permit office where we will obtain our permits and register for our climb. We will then travel to Penitentes 2,580 m (8,465 ft.) to coordinate our logistics and begin acclimating at the Hotel Ayelen.  Day two will be short; climbing up from Horcones to Confluencia Camp where we will further our acclimatization. The following morning will be a hike to Plaza Francia to see the South Face of Cerro Aconcagua. On day four we will have a good breakfast and make our way to Plaza de Mulas. This is our hardest day of hiking, 23 km (12.2 miles), and will get us to our final base camp at 4,350 m (14,500 ft.) We will spend 3 nights here prior to making our ascent on the summit. During this period we will continue to acclimate and summit Cerro Bonete at 5,004 m (16,417 ft.)

Day nine will take us to Camp Canada at 5,050 m (16,568 ft.) and return to Plaza de Mulas. A rest day at Plaza de Mulas and hot showers. Then we hike to Plaza Canada where we set up our first camp. Then to Nido de Condores at 5,560 m (18,241 ft.). We will then make our way up to Camp Berlin 5,930 m (19,455 ft.). At Camp Berlin we will only make our summit bid the following morning. We will leave between 4-5 am and expect to be on the summit at 6,962 m (22,841 ft.) by 12 noon. We will make our way back to Camp Berlin for another night and then back down to Plaza de Mulas. There are 2 additional days inserted in case of bad weather and to insure the success of the expedition. The following morning we will make our descent down the mountain and meet our private transfer to take us back to Mendoza for a well-deserved dinner and time to celebrate. The final morning, after a good breakfast at the hotel, we will depart for the airport and our flights home.

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Day 1: MENDOZA, ARGENTINA

Once you arrive in Mendoza, Argentina you will be met and transferred to your hotel. We will stay at Hotel El Portal Suites in the heart of the city close to bars and restaurants. The first day in Mendoza is to relax after the long international flight.

Overnight Hotel El Portal Suites (Bed & Breakfast)

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Day 2: MENDOZA, ARGENTINA

After a nice breakfast at the hotel we will transfer into the city to obtain our permits for the climb. The park service requires all members of the party to sign their own permit form and fill out the appropriate information. This day is also a good day to rent plastic boots and crampons if you have not brought your own. In the afternoon there is a climb briefing and meet & greet at El 23 Gran Bar.

Overnight Hotel El Portal Suites (Bed & Breakfast)

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Day 3: DRIVE TO PENITENTES

After we obtain our permits we will transfer to Penitentes, approximately 4 hours away, via private transfer where we will give our bags to the mule service.
We will stay at Hotel Ayelen at the base of Penitentes Ski Resort situated at 8,900 feet.

Overnight Hotel Ayelen – Twin Share (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 4: HIKE TO CONFLUENCIA

After a good breakfast at Hotel Ayelen we will transfer to Horcones and sign in with the park service. From here we will begin our 10 km, 6 mile, walk towards Camp Confluencia situated at just below 3,390 meters (11,300 ft). After we arrive at camp we will have a good portion of the day to rest while we continue to acclimate. The camp has spectacular views of the surrounding peaks and is our first chance to appreciate the altitude in this arid environment.

Overnight Confluencia Camp (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 5: HIKE TO PLAZA FRANCIA

After breakfast we will make our way to Plaza Francia, approximately 4,050 meters (13,287 ft), and a view of Aconcagua from the imposing South Face. There is a great viewing area for pictures and we will have lunch here at our maximum elevation. The South Face has only been climbed by a select few and its treacherous avalanches can be seen from Plaza Francia. This will be a long trek where we will take our time and adjust to the ability level of the group. We will arrive back to camp no later than 4pm and have a chance to rest before we eat dinner prepared in our dining tent.

Overnight Confluencia Camp (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 6: HIKE TO PLAZA DE MULAS

With an early start, we will grab a good breakfast and begin our long trek towards Plaza de Mulas. This will be our longest day and will require the entire group to be prepared with ample water, snacks, and sunscreen due to the extreme aridity of this terrain. The trail follows the Valley de Los Horcones along rocky terrain as we slowly gain altitude throughout the day. We will have lunch on the trail at an unused camp site known as Refugio Ibanez. After approximately 22 km (12.2 miles) we will reach our destination of Plaza de Mulas where we will enjoy hot water, nice rooms, and good food at our dining tent in Plaza de Mulas.

Overnight Plaza de Mulas (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 7: REST DAY

This will be a complete rest day. We encourage everyone to get out, walk around for while, and get the legs moving, but there will be no acclimating or trekking today. We will have breakfast, lunch, and dinner, all prepared in the dining tent.

Overnight Plaza de Mulas (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 8: ACCLIMATIZATION HIKE TO CERRO BONETE

After a good breakfast we will trek up a local peak, Cerro Bonete (16,417 ft) to get further acclimated and begin our preparation for our summit push. Breakfast will be served in the dining tent, and lunch will be packed to take on the trek, and dinner will be provided upon return.

Overnight Plaza de Mulas (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 9: ACCLIMATIZATION HIKE TO CAMP CANADA

Today will be our fist look at the mountain and the terrain we will cover once we depart from base camp. We will climb up past Camp Canada and progress to a higher elevation to further acclimate.

Overnight Plaza de Mulas (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 10: REST DAY

This day is dedicated as another rest day where we will have one last night in Plaza de Mulas before we begin our summit push. If desired there is a day hike for anyone who feels strong. All meals will be in the dining tent and we will pack our gear the night before.

Overnight Plaza de Mulas (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 11: CLIMB TO CAMP CANADA

After a good breakfast we will leave Plaza de Mulas and climb up the scree slopes to the pinnacles surrounding the flat promontory of Camp Canada situated at 5,050 m (16,568 ft.) Hiking time is usually 3 to 4 hours. We will spend the night here and prepare for our next day to Nido de Condores.

Overnight Camp Canada (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 12: CLIMB TO NIDO DE CONDORES

Today we will make our way up the mountain to Nido de Condores and will stay the night here. Nido de Condores is a large flat area with some large rocks that provide wind breaks. The view to the south, across a vast scree field called the Gran Acarreo, reveals the famous Canaleta Couloirs and the summit of Aconcagua. This will take approximately 4.5 hours with plenty of switchbacks before we reach Camp 2 at 5,560 m (18,241 ft.).

Overnight Nido de Condores Camp (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 13: CLIMB TO CAMP BERLIN

This will be the group’s last high altitude camp before attempting to the summit.

Overnight Camp Berlin (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 14: SUMMIT DAY

From our high camp we depart between 4-5 am where the route continues along the Northwest ridge, passing the highest refuge in the world, Refugia Independencia, at 21,476 ft. From these ruins we continue climbing up and right, crossing the Cresta del Viento (Windy Crest). From here we traverse the upper part of the Gran Acarreo, which leads to the Canaleta, the most famous and challenging part of the entire climb. The Canaleta is an approximately 30° scree gully that rises 500 m (1,500 ft) and requires great patience and stamina. Above the Canaleta, we will find ourselves on the Cresta del Guanaco, the ridge that joins the lower South Summit to the higher North Summit. We follow the ridge crest to the 6,962 m (22,841 ft.) true summit, where an aluminum cross marks the highest point in the Western Hemisphere! The 360° views from the summit are awe-inspiring as you gaze out towards the numerous 6,000 m peaks of the Andes. Summiting and returning to high camp takes between 10-13 hours.

Overnight Camp Berlin (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 15: EXTRA SPARE WEATHER DAYS

These days are extra in case of bad weather.

Overnight Camp Berlin (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 16: EXTRA SPARE WEATHER DAYS

These days are extra in case of bad weather.

Overnight Camp Berlin (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

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Day 17: DESCEND TO BASE CAMP

Today we descend back to Base Camp and have a celebratory dinner, the option for a hot shower, and plenty of rest before we make our way back to Penitentes.

Overnight Plaza de Mulas (Full Board)

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Day 18: RETURN TO MENDOZA

In the morning we will have the opportunity to descend in two different fashions. 1) Anyone who wishes to hike the remaining 25 km will depart at 8:30 with your guide and meet the party back at the trailhead around 15:30 pm; or 2) we can descend via helicopter departing around 15:00 and arriving around 15:30 to the trailhead.

Overnight Hotel El Portal Suites (Bed & Breakfast)

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Day 19: RETURN HOME

Have breakfast at the hotel and transfer to airport for our flights back home.

(Breakfast)

Accommodations

HOTEL EL PORTAL SUITES

the impotent beauty, delicious wines, ski centers and strategic location as the ‘hub’ of the Mercosur network, all make Mendoza such a unique destination. The exclusive attention of the highly trained staff, the spacious and illuminated suites, and the close proximity to banking and finance centers, simply demonstrate the service was conceived thinking about guests.

The suites offer spacious rooms, wifi, telephone, air conditioning, heaters, cable, bathroom, desk, kitchenette, bar, and fridge.

HOTEL AYELEN

After our departure from Mendoza we will spend one night in Puente del Inca at Hotel Ayelen 2,720 m (8,900 ft.) to work out logistics and begin acclimating.

The hotel is situated at the base of the Penitentes ski resort and offers bunk style accommodations, group dining and double share accommodations.

CONFLUENCIA and PLAZA de MULAS

are both expedition style accommodations with group dining tents for all meals. We will have bunk style sleeping arrangements which have a maximum capacity of 10. Each camp has a camp manager that will coordinate our meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) and help make out stay more enjoyable. We will have a private mess tent for our team where we will conduct our daily briefs and be able to relax during the daily down time or rest days.

There are private toilets for our camp located adjacent to the mess area and are available to use at any time of the day.

* Please note there is a hot shower at Plaza de Mulas that can be used for $5 per shower.

CAMP CANADA, NIDO DE CONDORES, and CAMP

will be our high camps before our summit attempt. Our tents will be set up at each camp when we arrive and are three person North Face tents. At both Camp Canada and Nido de Condores we will have a small toilet set up for our group.

  • 3 nights of lodging in Mendoza. Hotel El Portal Suites.
  • 1 night of lodging in Penitentes (meals included).
  • All the meals during the expedition (except in Mendoza).
  • Bilingual professional guide.
  • All shared equipment for the expedition (Tents, stoves, etc).
  • Complete base camp services (meals, accommodation, etc).
  • All the transfers in private vans.
  • Mule transportation of the equipment.
  • Permanent VHF radio communication.
  • We provide all our guides with professional first aids kits and pulse oximeter for daily updates of acclimatization progress.
  • High altitude porters for common gear carries. One every four pax.
  • Assistance with climbing permit procedure.
  • Personal porter
  • International round-trip airfare to Mendoza
  • Personal gear (clothing)
  • Alcoholic beverages & all meals not included
  • Excess baggage charges and airport taxes
  • Personal items
  • Charges incurred as a result of delays beyond our control- including extra hotels if climbers choose to opt out of any climbing portions
  • All expenses incurred in the event of early departure (evacuation fees, transport, extra hotel nights, etc)

Pricing starts at:

$4,995

Pricing

$4,995

per person ($800 PER PERSON extra for Park permit subject to change)