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16-day Ojos del Salado (6,890m) expedition from Catamarca in northern Argentina

Ojos del Salado ascent expedition
Ojos del Salado ascent expedition
Ojos del Salado ascent expedition
Ojos del Salado ascent expedition

Climb Ojos del Salado (6890m), the highest stratovolcano on Earth, located in the Andes mountain range, with this 16-day expedition starting from Catamarca, Argentina.

Private

Andes

16 Days

Jan - Apr, Oct - Dec

High

Intermediate


Highlights

* Climb Ojos del Salado, the second highest peak in the Western hemisphere

* Discover the unique landscapes of the Puna de Atacama

* Experience an amazing mountaineering ascent along an expert guide

Description

Reach the summit of the highest stratovolcano in the world, with this 16-day expedition to Ojos del Salado (6890m), in the Andes mountain range, starting from the Catamarca province in northern Argentina.

Ojos del Salado is located on the border between Argentina and Chile. Lying at 6,891m, it is also the second highest mountain in the southern and western hemispheres, being only surpassed by the Aconcagua (6,962m).

This gigantic volcanic complex is located east of Copiapó, in the Atacama region, and west of Fiambalá, Catamarca. Its main block culminates in 3 peaks, which have a west-east alignment. In that order, these summits are called West (6721m), Central (6752 m) and Main or Principal (6893m).

The Main summit is also known as the Bifida summit, because it ends in two rocky towers of almost equal altitude, which are distanced by about 50 m in a straight line and a slope of 30 m deep. These two maximum levels of the Main peak are called West tower and East tower, also known as Chilean summit and Argentinean summit, although both are bordering peaks.

Due to its location in the Puna de Atacama, the mountain has very dry climatic conditions, with snow only during the winter period and only in the upper levels. Although there are fumaroles around the top, there have been no eruptions in historical times.

We will start from the city of Fiambalá, in the province of Catamarca in Argentina, located at an altitude of 1550 meters above sea level. It is accessed through the San Francisco International Pass, covering a route of 230 kilometers, completely paved, to the limit with Chile. You can check the day-by-day itinerary below.

Logistically, it is more difficult to access the summit of the volcano through Argentine territory, since vehicular routes are further away from the top, although specialists have pointed out that, as a counterpart, on the Argentinean side the climb itself is wilder, more inhospitable and interesting.

If you want to join me on this amazing expedition to Ojos del Salado, just contact me and book your trip! You will experience an unforgettable mountaineering adventure, surrounded by unique landscapes in the Andes.

I also offer other mountaineering ascents in the Andes. Check them out!

Price includes

- Accommodation included

- Guiding fee

- Breakfast

- Lunch

- Dinner

- Transportation start and back

- Porters

Price details

The price includes: Transfer La Rioja / Fiambalá / La Rioja.

Transfer of your personal equipment by Mules and 4 × 4 vehicles.

Camps: Full meal service.

Lunch for trekking.

All shared equipment for the expedition (tents, stoves, etc.)

Professional bilingual guides with many years of experience in the park.

Permanent VHF radio communications from all camps.

First aid kits, oxygen tube and pulse oximeter for daily updates of acclimatization progress.

SERVICES NOT INCLUDED IN THE PRICE: All expenses arising from the abandonment of the trip.

Meals, drinks and other expenses not mentioned in the itinerary.

Personal insurance.

Porters for personal height equipment.

Personal Team.

Personal Medication.

Air and land evacuations.

Internet, telephone and satellite communications, personal elements.

Liability insurance.

Hospitalization or medication of any kind.

Any other service not mentioned in "Price Includes" section.


Itinerary

Day 1: Catamarca (1.385m)

The guide will be waiting for you at the Catamarca Airport, to accompany you to your Hotel. This day your mountain equipment will be checked and we will accompany you to rent whatever is necessary for the expedition. You will stay at  one of the best Hotels in Catamarca. (Meals not included)

Day 2: Catamarca / Fiambalá (1.505m)

The group will travel by private transfer to the city of Fiambalá. This day will be dedicated to rest after the long trip and to talk about the expedition. Hotel accommodation. (Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner).

Day 3: Fiambalá / Quemaditos Refuge (3.600m)

After breakfast the group will travel by truck the 131 Km that separate Fiambalá from  Quemaditos Refuge, at the Cazadores River gorge. Here the first camp will be installed. (B-L-D).

Day 4: Quemaditos Refuge / Aguas Calientes Camp (4.165m)

After the first night on the mountain, we will leave early in the morning to the Aguas Calientes camp, the last place with water. We will take water from a spring from the Cazadores River (B-L-D). Walking time: 7 hours

Day 5: Aguas Calientes Camp / Aguas de Vicuñas Camp (5.050m)

This day starts very early. After breakfast, the trek will begin towards the next camp called Aguas de Vicuñas. Once we arrive at the place we will install the camp. (B-L-D). Walking time: 7 hours.

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Day 6: Aguas de Vicuñas Camp / Base Arenales Camp (5.200m)

In the morning the last day of approach to the mountain will begin. We will reach the Arenales Base Camp. The camp will be installed and you can explore the surroundings of this wonderful place. (B-L-D). Walking time: 7 hours.

Day 7: Rest Day at Arenales Base Camp

This day we will rest at the Arenales Base Camp. You can contemplate the beauty of this region. (B-L-D)

Day 8: Ascent to mountains near Base Camp (up to 6,700m)

This day will be used to acclimatize to the altitude and recognize neighboring mountains such as Tres Cruces (6,700 m), Cerro del Nacimiento (6,493 m), Incahuasi Volcano (6,698 m ), among others. (B-L-D)

Day 9: Rest Day at Arenales Base Camp

This day we will make a last equipment check and rest to build up forces for the next days of expedition, which require more effort. (B-L-D)

Day 10: Base Arenales / HIgh Camp (5,800)

We will start the ascent to the High Camp, located at 5,800 m, very early. Once in place, and after a break we will start settin up the camp. You will enjoy wonderful views and a unique landscape. (B-L-D). Walking time: 7 hours

Day 11: Rest Day at High Camp

We will take some rest today, preparing ourselves for the summit attempt the next day. (B-L-D).

Day 12: High Camp- Ojos del Salado summit (6,864m)- High Camp

We will have breakfast very early in the morning in order to avoid the wind and start the first summit attempt. The climb to the summit takes about 8 hours, depending on the physical conditions of the expeditionaries and especially on the weather factors. On this day it is necessary to have equipment to withstand temperatures from -25ºC to -30ºC and winds over 80 Km / hr, including front lamp for night running, crampons to cross a snowfield with 35º inclination of 100 m long at 6,550 masl, poles and / or marching piolet. In addition, each participant must have a personal thermos to bring water on the day of the summit, this must have a capacity of not less than one liter.

This ascent is carried out by a very well marked footprint and through sandy terrain with slopes that vary from 15º to 40º of inclination. After 6 hours of walking, we reach the crater of the volcano. From there we walk towards the summit on large rocks where we must face the final climb: 30 m to 6,860 meters above sea level 5.6 on the American scale. Our company supplies ropes for the nevero crossing and final climbing. The summit can accommodate approximately 6 people.

After being at the summit for 15 minutes, we begin the return to High Camp. It will take us around 4 hours. (B- L- D). Walking time: 12 hours approx.

Day 13: High Camp / Arenales Base

After breakfast, we will dissamble our camp and enjoy the last images of this amazing landscape, continuing the descent to the Base Camp. The loads will be prepared to be transported by mules the next day. ( B-L-D)

Day 14: Arenales Base Camp /Aguas Calientes Bamp.

The base camp will be disarmed and after having breakfast we will start the descent,  trekking to the next camp: Aguas Calientes. Our thoughts will be immersed on the days we lived in this great mountain, experiences and experiences that you will never forget. (B-L- D)

Day 15: Aguas Calientes Camp / Quemaditos Shelter

As usual, the day starts early, putting off our camp and starting the trek in the direction of the last camp, on the Quemaditos Refuge. Once we arrive, we will be able to toast for the success of this great expedition to the King of the Desert. (B-L-D). Descent time: 5 to 6 hours.

Day 16: Quemaditos / Fiambalá

After breakfast, we will transfer to the city of Fiambalá, where you will be staying at the Hotel. We will enjoy a farewell dinner at a restaurant, offered by the company. (Breakfast-Dinner)

Day 17: Fiambalá / Catamarca City

Transfer to the city of Catamarca, staying at a Hotel (B)

Day 18: Catamarca Airport Transfer (Breakfast included)

 

Details

More info

We will send you a detailed Equipment List upon booking

Meeting point

Fiambala, Catamarca

About the guide

Guide profile image

Luciano

4.50

(4)

Mountain Guide

EPGAMT Mountain Guide from Mendoza, Argentina.

I always enjoyed the mountains, and started with mountaineering activities since a young age, so it was natural for me to become a mountain guide. I’ve been working for more than 15 seasons in Aconcagua, first as porter, then as Mountain Guide assistant, and now as Mountain Guide.

I climbed a lot of peaks all along the Andes mountain range, in Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Peru, including Aconcagua (6.962 mt – 27 ascents, through different routes like the North and the Polish glacier-), Co Plata (6.000 mt), Ojos del Salado (6.780 mt), Mount Pissis (6.850 m), C° LLullaillaco (6.723 m), C° Incahuasi (6.450 m), Vn Sajama (6.550 m), Vn Bonete Chico (6 750 m), Co Junción (5000 m), Toclaraju ( 6036m), Pisco (5750m), and the three summits of Tres Cruces 6.780m. I recently did my first expedition in the Himalayas, where I reached the summit of Mt Lhotse (8.516 mt).

I usually enjoy organizing expeditions to wild, off-the-beaten-track destinations, that need a complex logistic that you won’t find easily elsewhere.

I am fluent in Spanish, English and Italian.

Languages

Italian | English

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What people are saying about this trip

Frank

5.00

Luciano was excellent. His local knowledge showed as he was able modify the itinerary of the trip as circumstances - such as weather - changed in order to ensure the expedition was a success. He is a deeply experienced mountaineer with sound judgement prepared to provide advice whilst ensuring you have fun. I would highly recommend his services.


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