The next morning I woke up determined to begin the ordeal of the final climb. I was totally sorry for having undertaken this adventure. For me, Aconcagua was already good. I just wanted to get to the top and interview Garrido, fulfill my journalistic goal. I couldn’t fail. I reached the “Independencia” refuge, once called “Eva Perón”, which was cataloged as the highest refuge on Earth. It is just a kind of kennel for large dogs, without a roof and full of Fernando’s things, at about 6,500 meters. The temperature has softened a lot and I only register 15 degrees below zero. I resumed the ascent making a long flank towards the west and leaving the route of the “canaletas” on my left. Going up, climbing a succession of easy rocks, seeing the ridge above me Aconcagua Ascents, I realized the ordeal I was experiencing and that more or less all those who manage to reach the same summit suffer. Sometimes he sensed that he would not be able to climb another meter. The mind remained empty, without being able to make any decision. In these moments, and it is something that I have already verified on more occasions, it is the subconscious that rules; You are in the world of dreams. I tried to demand an extreme mental concentration and so I climbed fifteen or twenty meters.Sometimes, I thought with the tranquility of someone who is placidly dreaming or I don’t know if even screaming, that I was lost, seeing hallucinations and absolutely without strength. I am nothing but exhausted matter. In Aconcagua you are in the last meters, on the border of the beyond, and this, I am sure, has been felt by most of the adventurers, curious and climbers who have tried to reach the summit, whether they remember it or not.What would the experiences of Garrido, who had been at the top for almost two months, be like? Aconcagua ArgentinaI could remember, between mists of memory and past hallucination, my days lost and unconscious on the slopes of this mountain, in 1970, and my terrors were reborn only when I returned to see the ravines and glaciers through which I traveled.I finally reached the ridge and was able to see the southern peak of Aconcagua very close and, just below, the enormous frozen precipice of the southern slope, from which an ice avalanche was falling at that time. It took me almost two hours to walk the ridge and climb the last few meters to the northern peak, the highest. I was already more recovered. I photographed myself without any illusions next to the cross and saw the summit different from how I remembered it from my two past visits. I wasted no time and began to descend east through the snow. There, about a hundred meters below, there was a small blue tent, inside which Fernando Garrido, a resident of Aconcagua, living near the top, testing his spirit, hoped to break the strange “record” of surviving.Life inside the tent, all day in the sleeping bag because of frostbite on the feetEvery morning and every afternoon I have to write down my medical data in some graphs despite the tremendous laziness that it causes meI survived the pet that Maribel gave me and that I always have hanging on the ceiling of the storeexcept when the wind blows itIn a very small blue tent, mounted on the edge of the Poles Glacier, about a hundred meters below the top of Aconcagua, is Fernando Garrido. He pokes his head out of the round hole in the doorway with a smile.When he leaves, we hug and take some photos. He is a boy of about twenty-six years old, tall and very sporty looking. I find him very well despite the enormous punishment of spending almost two months in this cosmic prison, absorbing so much radiation, which seems to be one of the causes that makes Aconcagua a dangerous mountain. AconcaguaFernando is very happy to see me and that I am staying with him tonight. During these days, many mountaineers from different countries have passed through the summit, and many also from Spain – it has been the year of Aconcagua -, seeming as if they had all previously agreed. However, there have been very few who have gone down to where Garrido is. He normally reaches the top in very precarious physical conditions and is not available for visits.Here, so high up, and under this special atmosphere, Fernando and I started a cross-conversation, while he, with a piece of ice, while a pot, dirty from weeks of soups, to make a coffee with milk.Fernando is tall, he has clear eyes, and you can tell that he is a person of strength and courage. He is wearing a balaclava and is usually in the sleeping bag. Inside the store he makes a strong smell that, instantly, is already normal. On the ceiling, a small ID photo of his girlfriend.I’m looking forward to them, he says. Maribel will stay, however, in “Plaza de Mulas”, although her Chilean friends will climb to the top to help her.Since December 8, Fernando has been in the 7,000 meters, although until the 12th he did not will start
Matthias Zürbriggen was born in the year 1855 (1856 according to other sources) in Saas Fee, Switzerland. When he was two years old, his parents took him to Macugnana (Italy).At the age of thirteen, trying to escape the life of the poor, he worked in Switzerland and in different countries, such as Italy and France. He tried the most diverse jobs, he was a carpenter, he worked in the post office, then in the railway, he was a hunting guide in Algeria.Due to his travels he became a polyglot. He spoke German, French, Italian and Hindustani.Very young and in a short time, he became a perfect mountaineer, skilled in the work of ice and rock.The feared and famous East Wall of Monte Rosa (the highest and largest in the Alps) was his first success as a guide, accompanying Prochasca, on August 7, 1886.From that moment on, Matthias Zürbriggen was pressured by clients, and he guided on routes and hills that until then he had only known by reference, such as the Matterhorn (Italy), Jazzi (Italy), as well as other summits and traverses.The year 1892 begins and Sir William Martin Conway prepares the first great expedition to Baltoro, in the Karakorum. He sought the collaboration of Charles G. Bruce, A. D. McCormick, Oscar Eckenstein, J. H. Rondebush and the special participation, as guide, of Matthias Zürbriggen and Colonel Lloyd Dickin, along with four Sherpas, who complete the group. How to Climb AconcaguaThis English expedition sailed from Europe to India, traversing the Kashmir chain on foot through the Burzil Pass. His first successes were the first ascents of Pioneer Peak (6,890 masl), buttress of the Golden Throne and the small Cristal Peak.In the years 1894/1895, another Briton requested his services: this time it was Edward Fitz Gerald, who took him as a guide to New Zealand. There he ascended Mount Sealy, Mount Tasman, Silberhorn, and Haidinger; and after two attempts he overcame Mount Sefton.He alone completes the ridge that bears his name to Mount Cook.Matthias Zürbriggen on AconcaguaWith Fitz Gerald he sets off in 1896 in search of the Roof of America. He investigated and discovered the ascent route and on January 14, 1897, he alone achieved the first ascent of Aconcagua (6979m / n.m.).On April 12, 1897, together with Stuart Vines, he achieved the first ascent of Tupungato (6,550 masl).He then travels with Borghese to the Tian Chan. Mount AconcaguaIn the year 1899 and in 1902, he again investigated and explored the Karakorum, with the American couple Bullock-Workmann. He climbs Koser Gunge (6,400 meters above sea level) and other peaks near Skoro – La.His only son emigrates to the United States, which plunges him into a depression. His last reported ascent of him is the Matterhorn, in 1911.He leaves his wife and gradually becomes an alcoholic.He ends his days by committing suicide by hanging in the city of Geneva, on June 21, 1917. The curious news that a Spaniard had set out to achieve the record time of two months on top of Mount Aconcagua, at 6,956 meters, made me remember my adventures on those slopes. My desire to return to the summit experience was immediately reborn, and instead of preparing my ascent of Mount Kenya, as I had planned, I thought of climbing, sixteen years after my first ascent, the famous mountain to interview Fernando Garrido, whom he knew by reference.Location of Aconcagua, Mendoza, Argentina.Aconcagua is a mountain that, like any other, is inextricably linked to my life and my history. In it I lived one of the most terrible and grandiose experiences being lost on its western slope for five days, when they had already prepared my plaque in the Puente del Inca cemetery. Despite this, I returned to its summit a year later, when circumstances forced me to bring the summit book from there, which led to a bitter controversy. I am, to some extent, one of the greatest promoters of such a special mountain, and it was reasonable that the curious and admirable survival of Fernando Garrido was not alien to me, and I would like to learn more about it. And, without thinking too much, I went to Aconcagua, ready to remember old experiences. Life – I thought – is a constant decline.Only these moments of danger, hardness and exaltation stop the vital ramp. Fernando Garrido is a young mountaineer from Aragon, of whom I already knew that he had only been able to climb Annapurna 111 °, a Himalayan peak of 7,500 meters. That time, Garrido intelligently rose above a difficult summit, following and taking advantage of the tracks of a Catalan expedition that did not, however, reach the top. He wrote a simple story in which he spoke of his efforts and the loneliness of so many days. Garrido, a ski teacher at La Molina, had the project of breaking the “record” for permanence at high altitudes, held by the Frenchman Nicolás Jaeger, a French alpinist doctor who, in 1979, had spent 59 days in the Collado del Huascarán, of more than 6,300 meters. Jaeger had based his doctoral thesis on the behavior of man at such heights and later wrote a book on loneliness. Fernando Garrido chose a mountain that was tougher in climatology and higher. If he endured the days he had planned, he would overcome-as it has-the strange but very interesting Cerro Aconcaguaexperience of Jaeger.I set out on the road to Aconcagua when the Spaniard had been at the height for more than fifty days. He had no time to lose if he wanted to carry out the highest journalistic mission in the world: an interview at 7,000 meters. He remembered the extreme hardness of the ascent to Aconcagua and could not arrive on time if I neglected or Fernando gave up on his adventure.
From the viewpoint of Aconcagua on the edge of National Route 7, at 2,800 meters above sea level, it can be seen. It clearly looms from the bottom like a colossus among huge mountains that surround it. However, he stands out with his eternal snow, with his lineage of “the greatest”. In the photo it looks small, just an optical illusion, it is enormous, and even more enormous if you see it as we did with binoculars.Indeed, the Aconcágua is the “Roof of America” and measures 6,962 meters, a height that corrects the previous mark of 6,959 that still persists as an indicative sign on National Route 7 at the point of the viewpoint.Entirely in Argentina, Aconcagua also holds the record for being the highest mountain outside the Asian continent where the giants of the Himalayas are.To the north and east it is bordered by the Valle de las Vacas and to the west and south by the Valle de los Horcones Inferior. The mountain has several glaciers, the most important being the northeastern or Polish glacier and the eastern or English glacier. The view of these photographs is towards precisely the first of these, these being one of the most fearsome and difficult routes to climb together with the south wall.It is located within the Aconcagua Provincial Park, and it is a mountain very frequented by climbers from all over the world, this year again the influx of visitors has set a new record: more than 8,000 permits to ascend. Aconcagua Mountain GuidesGeological studies place the rise of Aconcagua between 200 and 280 million years ago. The hill was created by the subduction of the Nazca Plate under the South American Plate during the Andean orogeny (Tertiary, therefore geologically recent). The origin of its name is unclear: it is disputed whether it comes from the Araucanian Aconca-Hue or the Quechua Ackon Cahuak. This last name means “Stone Sentinel”. We are about to begin a journey that is going to elevate you. So much so that they will be on the second highest mountain peak in the world. Let’s go to the Aconcagua Provincial Park in Mendoza and get ready to meet and ascend Cerro Aconcagua TrekkingThis place is one of the eleven protected areas of Mendoza. Located about 53 kilometers from Uspallata, it is beautiful wherever you look at it, in its more than 71 thousand hectares. Surrounded by the rivers of the Vacas and the Horcones, it also has the Cathedral hill, the Cuerno and the Bonete. This place is desired not only by tourists, but also by climbers and mountaineers. It is that such a number of meters implies a challenge since the 19th century, when the first one who wanted to climb it was a German -Paul Gussfeldt- who did not reach the top. Only in 1942 a group of Argentines, ventured to the ascent.The ascents are controlled by park rangers, who distribute information brochures and bags for waste. It is best to arrive several days in advance, to adjust to the weather and altitude. Quite a challenge…
The Aconcagua (6,961 m) will receive this month an illustrious visitor with an uncommon goal. This is Yuichiro Miura, 86, who will try to climb the highest mountain in America and ski down it. As revealed by The Asahi Shimbun, the octogenarian Japanese adventurer is not ready to hang up his skis yet and this dream has been marked as “the last mountaineering adventure of an old man who receives geriatric care, with the support of an elite expedition ” , as he ironically defines himself.A definition, however, that is still absolutely realistic. Yuichiro Miura’s expedition to Aconcagua is made up of six members, one of whom is Dr. Kazue Oshiro, a specialist in mountain medicine. And it is that the main difficulty of the company will be the health of the octogenarian, who suffers from the heart. He has been operated several times due to arrhythmia problems, and also fractured his pelvis in a skiing accident in 2009.In this sense, Dr. Oshiro points out that Miura “needs Climbing Aconcagua to carefully adapt to the height, from the early stages where the height is not so high; we also want to pay attention to dehydration.” In addition to the doctor, the expedition has an impeccable mountaineering team. Guide Hiroyuki Kuraoka will lead a mountain that he has climbed more than 10 times. In addition, he will have the support of Muneo Nukita, who has climbed Aconcagua 4 times. Along with them, the Aconcagua Climb will be the mountaineers Kazuya Hiraide and Kenro Nakajima, recent winners of the Piolet d’Or 2018 for their opening on the Shispare (7,611 m). Hiraide had already won the Piolet d’Or 2009 for the opening of Samurai direct with Kei Taniguchi at Kamet (7,756 m), in the Indian Himalayas.In addition to all of them, there will also be Yuichiro Miura’s second son, Gota Miura, 49, who has already accompanied his father on the three occasions in which he has climbed Everest, in 2003 at 70, in 2008 at 75 and again in 2013 with 80. The 2003 and 2013 ascents set the records for the oldest ages on Everest’s summit. The last one is still valid today. Trekking Aconcagua Although these longevity records are obviously media achievements, Yuichiro Miura probably already had a feat on his resume for which he will be remembered on his own merits. Well, in 1970 he was the first person able to ski down from more than 8,000 meters on Everest.He did it from the South Col (8,000 m) in an adventure of epic proportions for the time. He descended some 2,000 meters in 2 minutes and 20 seconds and fell 400 meters down the steep Lhotse Wall. He was wearing a parachute to slow down his descent and stopped less than 100 meters from a huge crack that would have been fatal.
For this investigation, it can be said that the name Aconcagua comes from the Quechua language, being a compound word of Akún, which means very high summit, Ka in the same language is an adverb other or another. As for the ending Gua, it is applied to all Aconcagua Guided Climb, which is related to fear or admiration, so the name Akún-Ka-Gua, correctly translated into the Spanish language, is another of the very high peaks, feared or admired”.“The Cuyo Indians -mainly the Huarpes- and also the Mapuches, generally called the mountain range Akún-Ka-Gua, but upon the arrival of the Spanish conquerors, said compound name was deformed in Aconcagua, to refer only to the highest hill After finishing this simple story about the Colossus of America, it is worth reflecting on why the settlers who released the water from Aconcagua transcend in the Aconcagua Expedition narratives as giants, is it possible that it is due to the fact that for challenge a god (Apus) and win, do you have to be? After the Swiss Matthias Zürbriggen reached the summit for the first time on the Aconcagua hill, on January 14, 1897, the area of Puente del Inca began a series of of transformations, which would turn it into an outstanding center for high-mountain sports.The arrival of the Trasandino Argentino Train in 1902 and the construction of the Puente del Inca Thermal Hotel in 1903 witnessed a large influx of people. The rest, the thermal baths and the practice of mountain sports, among which the Climb Aconcagua mountaineering, skiing, hockey and ice skating, dog sledding and horseback riding, walks to Christ the Redeemer of the Andes, etc.; they delighted the passengers.During the 1920s, as the arrival of climbers from different latitudes increased, the services of a Chilean guide, Mario Pastén, were incorporated, who during the following two decades and thanks to his great performance, would gain international prestige and fame, as guide and rescuer.The Trasandino Argentino train station, the international route and the proximity to the hotel infrastructure, complemented climber could arrive from Buenos Aires or Chile, rest in the hotel and a few days later, reach the summit of Aconcagua hill. . a Laguna de Horcones, is located in the homonymous valley, and extends from RN 7 (south), to the Confluence of the Horcones river and El Durazno stream, on Almacenes hill Morro to the north; and from the east bank of the Horcones River, to the main edge of the Agua Salada hill (4,155 masl), to the west.
I was with José Luis in Plaza Francia, in February 2002, where they made the base camp, and from where they attacked the summit, I assure you that the vertical and imposing nature of that mass of stone and ice is impressive and I thought a lot about them and the magnitude of his feat with the clothing of that time, then I returned to see the south wall from the summit and I was even more impressed by the wall and the feat.What a group of men is capable of doing when they set out to do “the impossible.” My humble but sincere tribute to this very special class of men and women who make things happen and are not satisfied with seeing things happen.Trekking AconcaguaBetween January and February 1966, a team of Argentine climbers, made up of Jorge Aikes and Omar Pellegrini, faced the fearsome South Wall again, opening a variant on the route traced by the French, for which they crossed the right part of the wall diagonally. wall and reached the exit ramp of the French route.In the same season, the Argentine José Luis Fonrouge and the Austrian Hans Schonberger , a member of the Expedition led by Fritz Moravec , achieved a lightning ascent of the South wall , and inaugurated a variant in the lower part that joins the route of the French below the sandstone areas.The Austrian Reinhold Messner, in January 1974, again overcomes the southern wall, making an interesting variant from the Upper Glacier, point from where he reached the northern summit from the South (Messer variant) prior to arrival at the Filo del Guanaco, a ridge that join both peaks.Aconcágua In January 1978, Argentine climbers Guillermo Vieyro, Edgardo Porcellana, and Jorge Jasón opened the so-called “Argentine Route” through the East Glacier or Glaciar de los Ingleses, located to the left of the Glaciar de los Polacos, then surpassing the edge that delimits the Horcones Inferior and Los Relinchos valleys and reached the northern peak through the upper part of the Glaciar de los Polacos.Aconcagua has also been the scene of diverse and important scientific and technical studies. In this aspect, the German Expedition led by Dr. Albrech in 1966 should be highlighted.Aconcagua Mountain GuidesIn 1978, studies were carried out on the acclimatization of the human body to high altitudes and its effects on the bloodstream by a team led by Luis Parra, who broadcast live from the summit, this being the third time that the reached.In 1993 Doctors Gustavo Irusta and Adolfo Gambarte, both from Mendoza, carried out a research work, with effort tests at height, where climbers from all over the world participated, present at that moment in the mountain, the work was awarded by the Federation Argentina of CardiologyAn Expedition led by Fernando Santamaría reaches the summit with eight other members of the Andinista Club of Mendoza.And the story continues… humbly, this is my review of the first expedition of the Mountain Circle, belonging to the Medical Circle of Mendoza.
The captain of the British Army, Bazil Marden, of the Bengal Lancers Regiment, breaks in in mid-July 1928, in a solitary, winter and ski attempt, a daring attempt, to call it some way, cost him his life. corpse was found 5 months later above 4800m.The first Argentine to reach the summit was Lieutenant Nicolás Plantamura, on March 8, 1934, in the company of Italian mountaineers Pablo Ceresa, Pedro Ghiglio, Renato Chabon and Chilean muleteer Mariano Pasten.On the same day, several hours later, a Polish mountaineering team made up Konstanty Narkiewicz, Victor Ostrowski, Stefan Daszinski and Stefan Osiecki summited. This Expedition opened a new route, through the northeast glacier, which has been called since then and in his honor “Glaciar de los Polacos”, before it was called “Las Vacas.”The first lady to reach the summit was the French Adriana Bance, on March 7, 1940, in the company of the German Juan Linky, the members of the Club Andinista de Mendoza, Pablo Franke, Pablo Etura and Juan Semper.In December 1946, Alfredo Magnani leads an expedition reaching the summit at the age of 16, becoming the youngest climber to achieve this goal.Climb AconcaguaThe first winter ascent to the north summit, by the normal route, was achieved by the Argentine soldiers Emiliano Huerta, Felipe Godoy and Humberto Vasalla, at the beginning of September 1953.During the summer of 53/54 a strong French expedition, led by Rene Ferlet, reached the bottom of the “Horcones Inferior” ravine on the edge of the Glacier of the same name. There they set up their base camp, in what is now known as Plaza Francia ( 4100m) ready to besiege the vertical wall of the great mountain. After acclimatizing and carefully studying the slope, they chose as a route, the great spur that borders on the right, the gigantic central avalanche channel of the wall. This spur is relatively protected from the frequent landslides of rocks or ice. Towards the end of the second third, it bursts to give rise to a large bacon of ice called “Glaciar Superior”. This is a cutting glacier that pours its ice cascades into a void of almost 2000m, Climbing Aconcagua main dangers in the ascent of this spectacular, almost vertical, wall of ice and stone. They used more than a month of acclimatization and preparations, during which they equipped fixed ropes, in the most difficult sections, close to the spur. In February 54 (last year they were at MZA celebrating 50 years of the feat) they launched themselves to the top. The Group was made up of: Guy Poulet, Pierre Lesseur, Adrian Dagony, Edmund Denis, Lucien Berardini and R. Paragot, the best French mountaineers of the moment, which was to say in the world.For seven days they struggled between unstable rocks and ice, sleeping for a few hours practically hanging, with the abyss on their backs, severely affected by the cold, they manage to reach the summit, several Aconcagua Climb of them suffered frostbite on their hands and feet that in some cases ended in death. amputations. There was then talk of a “heroic bravado”. Undoubtedly the French created some of the toughest routes in the world, being at the time, the most difficult wall, with the greatest slope and height, above sea level, that avant-garde mountaineering managed to climb.
In ancient times, various aboriginal peoples lived in the vicinity of Cerro Aconcagua, among which the Araucanians, Huarpes and Pehuenches stood out. Later came the Inca Empire. , coming from the North, imposing its culture, its Quechua language and its religion. As you will notice, the empires always did the same.The extreme altitude, harsh climate and roughness of its steps made access to the region considerably difficult, as well as crossings through it. It is attributed to these circumstances, the few legends that link the great mountain, with the life of the peoples that surrounded it, in clear contrast with other hills such as the Mercedario, where important archaeological sites have been found generically called “Sanctuaries of Height”. All this group of great mountains, was the object of veneration by the primitive peoples that surrounded them, locating in them the residence of their gods, considering them great natural temples, depositing in them offerings, and remains of their most beloved and respected dead. .Only in the 19th century, historical events in direct relation to the Colossus of America began to be recorded. In 1817 General José de San Martín, “First Mountaineer of America”, overcomes the high border crossings between Argentina and Chile, through the Andean giants Aconcagua, Mercedario and Tupungato. To the north and south of the first, he crossed an army of 5,300 men, with 9,280 mules and 1,600 horses, through passes over 4,000m, a true feat for the time. Mount AconcaguaBetween the months of February and March 1883, the German explorer Paúl Gussfeldt has the great merit of being the first, who, in the company of some muleteers and laborers, carried out the first known exploration of Cerro Aconcagua. He entered through Chile, following the course of the Putaendo River, Valle Hermoso, Volcán River and Portezuelo de Penitentes, accessing the northwestern edge of the mountain, reaching up to 6200m.Gussfeldt disclosed his expedition through various publications, and made it known that it was the highest mountain in America, since at that time it was believed to be Chimborazo (6310m) located in Ecuador. In his honor, the Glacier was baptized with his name. located north of Aconcagua Guided Climb . The Swiss guide Mathias Zurbriggen, a member of the expedition led by the English mountaineer Edward Fitz Gerald, reached the summit of Aconcagua alone for the first time on January 14, 1897, by the north or normal route, which he accessed by Horcones Valley, days later Stuart Vines and Nicolas Lanti, members of the same expedition, reached the summit along the same route.Juan Stepaneck, an Austrian, and Miguel Gossler, a German, residents of Mendoza, attempted a new ascent of Aconcagua by the normal route at Aconcagua Expedition the end of January 1926. Exhausted his work license, Gossler descends, continuing Stepaneck alone and never returned. He is the first known victim of Aconcagua. Her body was rescued in a remarkable state of preservation, 20 years later, at 6600m, by the expedition led by Lt. First Valentin Ugarte.
In January I also find out that for different reasons José Luis, Sergio and Hugo cannot be in the game. I felt it especially, because from Lanín, we climbed several hills together and I know how they regretted giving up this project, especially José Luis, my dear friend. Sergio lent me the red dubet jacket, Meli, José Luis’s wife made me the polard gloves and Climb Aconcagua Cheap leggings that were so useful. In the end I only had to rent 1/3 of the elements I needed, the tent shared with Mario and Eduardo, the double boots, the crampons and the pickaxe. The waterproof jacket belongs to my dear son Pablo, he has practically donated it to me for my mountain activity. I bought the sea bag to send clothes and food on the mules and the red waterproof pants, with which I complete the team. The thick blue fleece was a gift from my cousin Lía, to whom she dedicated a summit photo for her birthday. Finally I bought the list of meals made by Constanza, in the supermarket and I end January with everything ready for the great adventure.Situation of Aconcagua:The Aconcagua hill, is located entirely in the Republic of Argentina, province of Mendoza, Department of Las Heras. It does not constitute an international limit. Its coordinates are: 69-59 degrees west longitude and How to Climb Aconcagua 32-39 degrees south latitude. It is included within the Aconcagua National Park. It limits to the west and south-west with the lower Valle de Los Horcones and to the northeast with the Valle de las Vacas. In the surroundings there are several peaks that exceed 5000m. In the Upper Horcones Valley are the Cuerno (5450 m), Catedral (5200m), Bonete (5100), Dedos (5000m) hills, in the Lower Horcones Valley: the Mirador (5800m), Ibáñez (5200m) and Almacenes (4800m). In the Valle de las Vacas rise the hills Ameghino (5800m), Fitz Gerald (5300m), Santa Maria (5100m) and all those that form the Cordón de los Penitentes.Geology and Glaciology Cerro Aconcagua It is a volcanic structure, a paleovolcano, that was active approximately 10 million years ago. It is accompanied by five main glaciers: Horcones Superior (to the west) with an area of 4.5 km2, Horcones Inferior (to the south) with an area of 7.7 km2, Gussfeld (north slope of Cerro Cuerno) with an area of 12 km2 and of the Poles (North-West of Aconcagua) which has an area of 19 km2.
At that time I had begun to climb hills with the Regatas group, directed by Gustavo Cunietti, my dear and admired friend, who, among other things, reached the summit in Aconcagua, climbing the South Wall, the one that has 3 vertical km of pure ice, in the middle of winter, what’s up !!! My goal at that time was El Plata, a 6,000m hill that always attracted me and that I see daily from home. I already tried twice without success, maybe next year. Aconcagua AscentsMy friend José Luis and my friend José Luis had planned to attempt Aconcagua in January 2003, but another beautiful project arose, which was the ascent of the Lanin Volcano in Neuquén and touring that beautiful National Park by bicycle, in February 2003. It was a beautiful and rich experience in all sense. I got to know a wonderful place, I climbed a spectacular volcano and I became friends with Sergio, Hugo, Jorge and Nino.In March 2003, we started training for Aconcagua with José Luis, Sergio and Hugo, thinking of January 2004. I contacted Fernando Santamaría at the Italian Hospital. He was a medical visitor and told me about his project at the Circulo de Montaña in relation to with the Medical Circle.We began to go to meetings and climb foothills with an established Aconcagua Argentina program that culminated with El Plata in December and Aconcagua in January 2004, later moving on to February, in the first fortnight. The Mountain Circle group was large, between 10 and 15 people who completed 80% of the established program: Fernando, Constanza, Esteban, Graciela, Belén, Eduardo Morales, Eduardo D’Angelo, Mario, José Luis, Sergio, Hugo, Gladys myself and others, whose names I don’t remember now. Several of them were in the Mountain Guides School.For reasons of schedule and work I trained alone. From March to October I ran the road with Jack, my beloved German Shepherd, 10 km twice a Aconcagua week, biked 20 km once a week and swam 40 pools in Races (1 km) once a week. As a group, we climbed a hill between 2,000 and 5,000 meters per month and we climbed Cerro Arco once every fifteen days where we went with José Luis, by bike from his house. From November to january, he ran three times a week, biked twice, swam once, and climbed the Arch every Sunday. Therefore for three months he trained every day!!! I think this was the key to my performance. I came across many who ran, but 80% were under 30 years old, at that age everyone runs, the merit is to continue doing it after 50. In January Dr. Carlos Esterlich performs a very demanding ergometry on me at the Regatas club , giving me the go-ahead for the attempt. He also contracted life insurance, so that my children could maintain their current standard of living until they graduated, if something happened… as you can see, I am not so unaware
This short story, which I was writing day by day, in what was one of the most important experiences of my life, and which I am convinced, has marked me forever, by making a dream come true with great effort.It is not intended to be a technical paper on mountaineering, nor an “adventure” book, but rather the feelings, thoughts and emotions that I felt at the age of 54 when I climbed the highest mountain in the West.I have also added in quotes comments from other climbers, whose concepts I fully share, having felt or thought of them at some point during this extraordinary experience.“There are men for whom the unattainable has a special attraction. They are not usually experts, but their ambitions and fantasies are strong enough to corner the doubts that more cautious men might harbor. Determination and faith are their best weapons. they are considered eccentric at best, insane at worst…”“In Aconcagua, which in the Aymara language means “The Stone Sentinel”… with its inhuman slopes, where ice and wind are sovereign, extremes are often touched: the beginning and the end of the road; success and failure; the life and death.Mythical mass that raises its top towards the stars, while its shadow is projected from the desert to the ocean. Scene of unusual stories, of great gestures of courage and heroism. Also revealer of vanities and fears. In this demanding environment, man shows himself as he is, there is no room for lies.How far is it worth risking your life to reach the top of it?The answer only fits up there. No one, lounging in the warmth of a Aconcágua timorous life, can judge the one who wastes his own vitality. High-altitude mountaineering involves serious risks and whoever decides to practice it must be absolutely responsible for their actions.Mountains as alpinistic objects only exist in the imagination of man, in his fantasy. Ascension is conceived as if it were a problem and a playful solution is sought for it.The game consists of cleanly overcoming the greatest difficulties with the help of the least possible technological means, with the highest degree of skill, training and audacity. Mountaineering as a means for the human being to grow.Aconcagua Mountain GuidesYou should not fight against nature, but adapt to it, understand it, respect its rhythm and try to assimilate the power it contains. Only in this way will beautiful solutions be achieved for the “big problems” of mountaineering. And only through this vision of the game, whoever plays it cleanly, will have access to unsuspected dimensions of their own being and of the whole world”Actually all this started several years ago, when for the first time I saw the Aconcagua hill from above, traveling to Chile by plane. While the rest of the passengers gave signs of admiration, I made a firm promise to Aconcagua Trekking myself to climb that great mountain that fascinated me for its size and incredible beauty, overshadowing the great peaks that surround it.
Aconcagua is the highest peak in America. Its 6962 meters of height rise majestically between the Principal mountain range, which is part of the Andes and separates Argentina from Chile.Although it is widespread that the mountain is shared by Chile and Argentina, the truth is that it belongs entirely to the Argentine side, where the entrance to the Park is and where the best views are obtained.The closest city to Aconcagua is Mendoza. The capital of beauty and Malbec wine, lives away from the glamor of this mountain, because it cannot really be seen from the city. You have to travel part of National Route 7 to see the top for the first time, surely covered in snow.During the first kilometers it is possible not to see the mountain clearly, since sandstorms are common and the air is not clean. Aconcagua trekYou have to keep in mind that the entire region surrounding Mendoza is desert. If you get there by plane you will see it right away. There is very little vegetation, so the water is really well used. The entrance to the Aconcágua Provincial Park is about 185 kilometers from Mendoza and comprises more than 70,000 hectares that protect and conserve the fauna and flora of the area.Trekking AconcaguaFrom the first moment you will see impressive images. Each mountain is different from the next, they have dozens of colors and different shapes. In addition, the meltwater river has formed impressive vertical walls over the years.It’s hard not to want to stop at every corner to take photos or videos. In addition, you will immediately discover a train track, which is no longer used. That road accompanies the road all the way, sometimes very close and others in the distance, but they never separate.One hopes that at some point a train will pass by, but ends up disappointed when one sees the track invaded by stones or cut by some landslide. In El Puente del Inca you will pass over the tracks. Due to the distance and the fact that the road has innumerable curves, it is important to leave Mendoza soon. The journey, without stopping, is almost three hours. You can do it on a previously contracted excursion, at the hotel or at any agency, by bus or on your own.Excursions usually include stops at outstanding places such as El Puente del Inca or the Potrerillos reservoir.The Buttini company makes the route between Mendoza and El Puente del Inca (just a few meters from Aconcagua) every day, making the first departure at 6 in the morning and the last return at 8:00 p.m. You can buy the ticket online.Aconcagua Mountain GuidesThe trip runs entirely along National Route 7 and is not heavy, since the landscape is spectacular. Of course, doing it in summer is not the same as doing it in winter, when it can become dangerous or impossible, depending on the state of the road.
To do the trekking and ascent to Aconcagua it is mandatory to register online, request the permit and pay the entrance fee at: www.aconcagua.mendoza.gov.ar– For the walk to Laguna los Horcones, online registration is not necessary. Payment is made at the provincial park visitor center.– For the Horcones – Confluencia one-day trek, online registration is not necessary. Payment and permission are made at the Horcones Visitor Center.aconcagua activitiesActivities in Aconcagua Climb AconcaguaTo take into account: For the trails it is mandatory to bring your ID or passport, sports shoes, a coat, sun protection, food and drinking water.Note: There is no food for sale in the park.What to do and activitiesIn the Aconcagua Park you can take walks along trails, trek through the mountains and climb to reach the summit.easy hikeValle de los Horcones interpretive trailThis one-hour circuit is the easiest to complete. Along a well-signposted interpretive trail, you can visit the Laguna Espejo, geological formations, fossil remains, the viewpoint of Aconcagua and Laguna Horcones. trekking trailsTrekking trails are divided into three types:1 – One day trek2- Short trek of 3 days3 – Long trek of 6 daysValley of Horcones Climbing AconcaguaDay circuit:Horcones – Confluence (3-4 hours)- Horconesshort circuit:1st day: Horcones- Confluence (3-4 hours)2nd day: Confluence- Plaza Francia (5 hours)- Confluence3rd day: Confluence- HorconesLong Circuit:1st day: Horcones- Confluence (3-4 hours)2nd day: Confluence- Plaza Francia (5 hours)- Confluence3rd day: Confluence Aconcagua Expedition4th day: Confluence- Plaza de Mulas (10 am)5th and 6th day: Plaza de Mulas7th day: Plaza de Mulas- Horcones (8 hours)cow valleyDay circuit:Cows- Pampa de Leñas (5hs)- Cowsshort circuit:1st day: Punta de Vacas- Pampa de Leñas (5 hours)2nd day: Pampa de Leñas- Casa de Piedra (6 hours)3rd day: House of Stones- Punta de Vacas (8 hours)Long Circuit:1st day: Punta de Vacas- Pampa de Leñas (5 hours)2nd day: Pampa de Leñas- Stone House (5 hours)3rd day: House of Stones- Plaza Argentina (5 hours)4th day: Argentine Square5th day: Plaza Argentina- Stone House (4 hours)6th day: Stone House- Pampa de Leñas (4 hours)7th day: Pampa de Leñas- Punta de Vacas (4 hours)Aconcagua Park pricesTo carry out the treks, you must pay an income and permit, the price of which depends on whether the trek is for a day, short or long. Rates also differ for residents of Argentina, Latin America or the rest of the world.
Located 185 kilometers from the city of Mendoza, Argentina, Mount Aconcagua is 6,962 meters high, which makes it the highest in the Western Hemisphere and second in the world after the Himalayas.It makes up the Andes mountain range where it reaches the highest point in America, with numerous peaks that exceed 5,000 m. In Aconcagua Guided Climbaddition, it preserves glaciers that give rise to rivers and meadows of natural beauty visitors from all over the world. It has two main peaks, the north summit of 6960 meters and the south summit of 6930. To the north and east it the Valle de las Vacas and to the west and south the lower Valle de los Horcones. Several glaciers traverse its slopes; the most important are the Northeast or Polish Glacier and the East or English Glacier.Some geological studies place the rise of Aconcagua some 200 to 280 million years ago. The mountain was created by the of the Nazca under the South American plate during the Andean orogeny (tertiary, therefore geologically recent). The hill is within the Aconcagua Provincial Park, a protected area located on National Route 7, in an international corridor that connects Argentina and Chile. It has incomparable natural landscapes. Aconcagua ExpeditionThe park has the particularity of having a marked temperature range with temperatures ranging from -2º at night to 30º during the day in summer and -15º at night to 10º during the day in winter; conversely, as altitude increases, the temperature begins to decrease. The Park offers a landscape of mountains of immense proportions, with long and deep valleys that contain wide open spaces and infinite views that are lost in the distance. It also provides fast flowing rivers and sparkling white water streams that run down the slopes feeding small prairies and wetlands of green grasses. Climb AconcaguaThe different geological formations offer a chromatic variety of gray, brown, reddish, white and veined rocks. These form the various mountains that flank the vast valleys. The mountain range presents great unevenness between the base and the distant and high peaks. Aconcagua Park is 185 km away. from the city of Mendoza and is reached by Route 7 (the same one that reaches the Cristo Redentor tunnel and the border with Chile). The route is in good condition and has many curves and cornices, so it is recommended to drive with extreme caution. During the winter the snow can cut off the road and make it impassable.To get there by micro, you can take a bus from the Transporte Buttini company. The buses and buses that travel to Las Cuevas or Santiago de Chile also pass through the park.
The following day should start early, it is advisable to leave after 6:00 am, since this will be a very long and tiring day of walking between 8 and 11 hours (approx. 28 km), which requires greater physical effort, taking into account that you can begin to feel the symptoms of altitude. Starting from Confluencia along the marked and signposted path, 10 minutes away you will find the division of the Climb Aconcagua roads that lead to Plaza Francia and Mulas, the course of both is signposted so there is no confusion about which one to take. The road goes down to a small plain called Inferior Confluence (old camping place) where the Horcones is crossed by a small bridge to go back up the slope bordering the river. This slope you enter the so-called Playa Ancha, a wide and picturesque flat ravine that is not difficult but makes you feel its slope at the end of its journey, you can follow several paths that go along the right bank of the Horcones Superior River. Approximately three hours away is Climbing Aconcagua Piedra Ibañez (3790 masl), a large rock that serves as a stop where you can take your first break, eat something and hydrate. An hour after the last break, continuing along the trail, Playa Ancha ends, Cerro Dedos marks its end and the changes its appearance, the narrows and the trail begins to climb steep slopes that make themselves felt, as a backdrop observe the Cuerno hill and the Horcones glacier, at whose base Aconcagua with your hands, since the west face of the massif accompanies the journey. Continuing about 3 hours and a half approx. you arrive at an old military refuge (4050 masl) destroyed by an avalanche, the last place to regain strength and face the end of the route, the so-called Cuesta Brava, which lives up to its name, Aconcagua Climb taking into account the hours traveled and the height gained. After the slope, where you have a panoramic view of the glacier and the Aconcagua base camp.Going up the moraine, you reach Plaza de Mulas (4,350 masl), a small city of tents in the Cordillera, base of the normal route of the Colossus, fully equipped with accommodation.