At the West of the province of Catamarca, in Argentina, you can find the impressive ‘seismiles’. This is a group of more than 20 mountains above 6000 m that belong to the Andes.
Nowadays, this peaks are very popular among mountaineers all around the world. However, the place was considered a high altitude sanctuary in the past. Native people called these mountains ‘Apus’, which means ‘home of the guardian spirits’, to whom they offered gifts and sacrifices.
This 12-day expedition in Catamarca is also a fantastic opportunity to discover the Puna, which is a large unexplored high desert.
Salt flats, amazing lagoons and colorful mountains are part of the stunning landscapes.
As a matter of fact, the summit of Cerro San Francisco (6016 m) offers a unique view. This volcanic mountain lies in the border between the Atacama region (Chile) and Catamarca (Argentina).
Besides, it is in the center of a volcanoes avenue, that includes Tres Cruces, Incahuasi, El Fraile, El Muerto, Ojos del Salado, Cerro Solo and El Condor.
Cerro San Francisco is an ideal choice for those who want to be at 6000 m for the first time.
To start this expedition we have to travel to Fiambalá. This is actually the last Argentinian city on the 60 road that leads to Chile.
Then, we begin our trek, and stay in mountain huts or camp for the night.
For more details about this trip, you can check the program below.
If you want to discover this isolated region of the Andes, please contact me. I will be happy to be your guide in this adventure.
La Rioja - Fiambalá
Arrival to La Rioja airport. Meeting point in the airport. Transfer and night in Fiambalá.
Fiambalá - Hotel Cortaderas
Transfer from Fiambalá (1.600 m) to Hotel Cortaderas (3.200 m). Acclimatization trekking around the place.
Trekking to Cerro Coquena (4.100 m) and Pastos Largos (4.000 m). 6/8 hours.
Transfer in 4WD to Las Grutas (4.050 m). Trekking around the area and thermal baths. Preparation talks for the ascents and night at mountain refuge.
Ascent to Falso Morocho (4.600 m). 4 hs. Night at mountain refuge in Las Grutas.
Ascent to Cerro Beltrán (5.275 m). 5 hs. Night at mountain refuge in Las Grutas.
San Francisco refuge.
Transfer Las Grutas – San Franciso international border (4.700 m). Ascent to San Francisco refuge. Night at refuge or tent.
Optional resting date.
Summit day - Las Grutas refuge.
Ascent to Cerro San Francisco (6.016 m). Descent to Las Grutas refuge.
Extra day in case of bad weather.
Las Grutas - Fiambalá
Transfer Las Grutas (4.050 m) – Fiambalá (1.600 m). Afternoon in thermal baths. Farewell ‘asado’ at night.
Transfer Fiambalá – La Rioja.
Price per person