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Aconcagua ascent via the northwest route

If you are a true mountaineer the Aconcagua ascent must be an adventure in your list. Guillermo, AMGA guide, will take you up via the northwest route in 22 days.

Mountain RangeAndes
Duration22 days
Offer periodJan, Feb, Mar, Dec
Skill LevelIntermediate
Fitness LevelFit
Type of tripPrivate and Group

Description

Culminating at 6963 meters, Aconcagua, in the Central Andes, is the highest peak in the Western Hemisphere. It is without a doubt a very popular destination for mountaineers. I invite you on this Aconcagua ascent adventure in 22 days. 

I planned an ascent through the Normal Route. It is ideal if you are looking for a major adventure but you don’t necessarily have much experience in high-altitude mountaineering. In general it includes trekking on trails, but we will use crampons and an ice axe on summit day.

We will ascend through the Normal Route, along the Northwest ridge. This climb is not technical, but it is physically demanding and you need to have basic mountaineering skills. The main challenges are the high altitude as well as the weather conditions. But the reward is priceless! Join me and let’s reach the highest point in the West Hemisphere.

For the detailed program, check the daily itinerary below. There, you will find information about how much we ascend each day and how I will make sure you get proper acclimatization. Besides, you will of course get to see what our objective is for each day!

Bear in mind that proper acclimatization is a key factor for an ascent as intense as this. Being in an excellent physical shape will increase your acclimatization ability. In addition, I designed a program to allow you to acclimatize progressively. You also need to be careful with nutrition, hydration and warmth during the expedition.

Dare to embark on this exciting Aconcagua ascent? Then wait no further, book this trip and we will start planning!

And if you also want to join me in Nepal, check out this 19-day trek to Everest base camp.

Accommodation

Hotel, mountain hut, camping.

Disclaimer

The itinerary is intended to be a guideline only, weather days and necessary extra rest days are always a possibility whilst on a climbing expedition.

More info

- You can hire a porter for an extra cost. - The guide ratio is 4, I can take up to 6 people with another guide.

Meeting point

At Mendoza.

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Photos


Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Mendoza

Transfer from Mendoza airport to your hotel. Free evening to allow for some rest after your trip.
Altitude: 740m

Day 2: Mendoza to Vallecitos

We meet at 9AM at the hotel. We check the equipment and get the necessary permits.
In the afternoon, drive to Vallecitos valley (2hs). We will spend the next 2 nights at a typical mountain hut (2850m).
Short acclimatization hike to Las Veguitas (3200m), with views over El Plata valley.
D+/-350m (hiking)

Day 3: Acclimatization: ascent of 3-4 summits

Today we will attempt to ascend 3 or 4 of the peaks of La Cadenita: Lomas Blancas (3850m), El Estudiante (3900m), Caucaso (4050m). The views are amazing!
Typical BBQ (“asado”) for dinner back at the hut.
D+/-1200m

Day 4: Refuge to High Camp

Ascent to the camp at Piedra Grande (3500m). From here the views over the valley are beautiful. Overnight camping.
D+650m

Day 5: Ascent to Adolfo Calle Peak (4300m)

We leave early in the morning to enjoy a full day and acclimatize. We ascend to the summit of Adolfo Calle through rocks and snow, and return.
D+/-800m

Day 6: La Hollanda

Acclimatization hiking up to La Hollanda camp (4600m), and return.
D+/-1100

Day 7: Transfer to Penitentes - Rest

2 hour transfer to Penitentes. Overnight at a hotel (2590m).
D+260m (driving)
D+650m (hiking)

Day 8: Penitentes to Confluencia, Aconcagua National Park

Today we enter the Aconcagua National Park. Mules will take our equipment, and we will transfer with a pick-up as far as possible along the Horcones jeep road. We will hike up the Horcones valley until the camp at Confluencia (3414m).
D+365m (driving)
D+450m (hiking)

Day 9: Confluencia to Plaza de Mulas base camp

We continue trekking, from Confluencia to Plaza de Mulas base camp (4350m), on top of a glacial moraine. We will be beneath Aconcagua west face. It is a very comfortable base camp.
D+936m

Day 10: Rest day at base camp

Rest and acclimatization day. It is normal to feel the altitude at this point.

Day 11: Carry the load to Camp 1

We hike up to Camp 1 (4938m, Plaza Don Fernando), carrying belongings. We return to base camp to spend the night.
D+/-588m

Day 12: Camp 1

We hike up to Camp 1 carrying the rest of our equipment. This is where we will spend the night.
D+588m

Day 13: Move to Plaza Don Benegas

We hike up to Plaza Don Benegas (5609m). We set camp and rest.
D+670m

Day 14: Rest

We take this day to rest and acclimatize.

Day 15: Move to Camp Plaza Caluba

We hike up (3,5 hours) to Camp Plaza Caluba (5974m). We are less than 1000m in altitude from the summit!
D+366m

Day 16: Summit day

This will be a very long but immensely satisfying day. We leave at 6 or 8AM, depending on the weather. We will reach the summit through Central Canaleta. The views along the way are outstanding. We will finally reach the metal cross which marks the summit of Aconcagua. I can’t even start to describe the views! Let’s hope for a clear day to enjoy them fully. Return to Camp Plaza Caluba.
D+/-988m

Day 17: Descent to Base Camp

Returning to Base Camp, we will go through Camp 1 where we will pick up the equipment that we left there.
D-1674m

Day 18 to 19: Stand by days

To allow for flexibility (due to weather and route conditions, as well as your acclimatization, strength and health) I planned extra days. In this way, we will have plenty of time!

Day 20: Trek out from Base Camp

Walk from Base camp to the trailhead at Punte del Inca (6-7 hours). We arrive to the hotel in Penitentes: hot shower, fresh clothes, celebratory meal).
D-365m (driving)
D-650m (hiking)

Day 21: Travel to Mendoza

My services end with the transfer back to Mendoza, to your hotel.

Day 22: Departure

Flight back home.


About the guide

guide profile img

Twin brothers Damian and Willie Benegas are two of the most respected climbers and mountaineers that Patagonia has produced. They boast an impressive 20 years' experience climbing and guiding expeditions in the Seven Continents, including tailor-made trips and group tours.

Benegas Brothers Expeditions' track record is proven by its outstanding safety and summit rates and the fact that clients keep coming back year after year.

It was their father's love for mountaineering and the outdoors that inspired Damian and WIllie as children to pursue their own adventures. Aconcagua and the mountains in northern Patagonia became their training ground and the place where they established themselves as world-class alpinists.

BBE was founded in 1992 and over the course of 20 seasons has guided clients from all over the world around the 4 corners of the world. The Benegas Brothers offer personalized adventures by prioritizing small groups in which family values and environmentally-friendly policies are of essence.

Join their expeditions in Patagonia, the Andes, the US and all over the world!


For booking assistance

Have any doubts? Talk directly with an Explore Share assistant.
The Concierge service is a great tool for when you still haven't decided what kind of Adventure you're looking for and you're open to suggestions


Prices per person

Group of 2

USD 7578 each

Group of 3

USD 7011 each

Group of 4

USD 5980 each

Group of 5

USD 5980 each

Group of 6

USD 5980 each

Want a different number of travellers?

Price includes

• Guiding fee

• Accommodation

• Transport during the trip

• Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Price details

• Mule supported trek to Plaza de Mulas base Camp (maximum 30kg per person) is included. The hotel upon return to Mendoza and the meals in Mendoza are not included. Additional hotels, meals & transportation should the climb end early are not included.


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