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Polish Glacier Route to Aconcagua

Polish Glacier Route
Polish Glacier Route
Polish Glacier Route
DAY 2

Join Rodrigo, a certified IFMGA guide, on an 18-day ascent through the Polish Glacier Route to the top of Aconcagua. Experience a technical route for skilled climbers.

Group

Andes

17 Days

Jan - Mar, Nov, Dec

Very high

Advanced


Description

The Polish Glacier Route to Aconcagua is a more technical way to summit this great mountain!

This Polish Glacier Route allows you to enjoy a more wild and remote area. Because less than 15% of the climbers come this way, it will be a more solitary ascent. Also, this way up is appreciated for its beauty and technical difficulty. Therefore if you want to try this route you need prior high altitude experience. In addition you have to know how to use an ice axe, crampons and be familiar with belaying techniques.

With more than 30 years guiding in the area I know this route like the back of my hand. And I have successfully guided it many times. I'll take you to the Polish Glacier through the Ameghino – Upper Guanacos Valley. Then we'll traverse the mountain to use this fascinating glacier ending right below the summit.

In the way up you'll find yourself in unbelievable places. Like our Camp I -Plaza Canada- (4928 m) which has an impressive view of the north face of Aconcagua and alpine Cerro Cuerno. Or the unusual rock formations that surround Camp III -Piedras Blancas- (5852 m).

Due to the different conditions on the mountain I will choose a line once we get there. Hence, if we encounter lots of penitentes (snow pinnacles) in the lower part of the glacier, I will take us through the right hand side. Also I will choose between a steeper direct route -safer due to fewer ice traverses- or the old route, not so steep but more exposed.

So contact me and I take you safely through this amazing Polish Glacier Route to Aconcagua! And if you are looking to summit some other great mountains check out some of my other trips: 12-day Nevado Juncal and 20-day Tupungato Volcano.

Price includes

- Accommodation included

- Guiding fee

- Breakfast

- Lunch

- Dinner

- Transport during the trip

- Luggage transfer

- Mules and horses

- Camping equipment tents

- Camping equipment cooking utensils

Price details

The price does not include:

- Round-trip flights to and from Mendoza, Argentina

- Aconcagua climbing permit fee ($700 to $900 depending on season) which you will pay in Mendoza, accompanied by your guide. South Americans pay about half of this amount and Argentinean Citizens about 1/4 of that amount.

- Meals in Mendoza

- Personal equipment

- Passport

- Personal items and services (laundry, snacks, drinks, tips, etc.)

- Expenses incurred in the case of a rescue or early departure from the expedition

- SAT phone charges


Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival

Arrival at the Mendoza Park – Hyatt Hotel. Team meeting and individual equipment check. Exquisite Argentinean cuisine and wine for dinner.

Day 2: Transfer to Penitentes

Permits at the Aconcagua Park Service office. Drive to Penitentes. Lunch stop in Uspallata on the way. Optional afternoon hike (recommended).

Day 3: Hike to Confluencia

Hike through Horcones Valley. Camp in Confluencia (3322 m). Mules carry your gear.

Day 4: Acclimatization climb

Hike to the base of the majestic South Face of Aconcagua (3962 m). Return to Confluencia.

Day 5: Ascent to Plaza de Mulas

Hike to our Base Camp in Plaza de Mulas (4200 m).

Day 6: Acclimatization Day

Rest and acclimatization day at Base Camp (4200 m). Practice of snow and ice techniques.

Day 7: First ascent to Camp I

Hike to Camp I, Plaza Canada (4928 m) carrying some gear. Return to Base Camp (4200 m).

Day 8: Move to Camp I

Ascent to Camp I (4928 m).

Day 9: First ascent to Camp II

Hike to Camp II, Nido de Cóndores (5431 m) carrying some gear. Return to Camp I (4928 m).

Day 10: Move to Camp II

Ascent to Camp II (5431 m).

Day 11: First ascent to Camp III

Hike to Camp III, Piedras Blancas -High Camp- (5852 m) carrying some gear. Return to Camp II (5431 m).

Day 12: Move to Camp III

Ascent to Camp III (5852 m).

Day 13 to 15: Summit Day!

Summit (6962 m). We leave several days for our summit day in case of poor weather.

Day 16: Descent to Base Camp

Descent from High Camp to Base Camp in Plaza de Mulas (4200 m).

Day 17: Hike down to Penitentes

Hike through the Horcones Valley. Mules carry the gear. Afternoon arrival to Penitentes. Quick shower and transfer to Mendoza. Night at the Park Hyatt.

Day 18: Departure

Leisure day in Mendoza.

 

Details

More info

Level: You need to have previous high altitude experience, and be very familiar with the use of ice axe, crampons, and belaying techniques.


  1. NON-STOP FLIGHT OPTIONS FROM LONDON TO MENDOZA (*)

From London to Buenos Aires:

  • Airline: Norwegian Air UK LGW-EZE (13 h 40 m) US$774 round trip
  • Airline: British Airways LHR-EZE (13 h 50 m) US$1,216 round trip

From Buenos Aires to Mendoza:

  • Airline: Aerolineas Argentinas AEP–MDZ (1 h 55 m) US$115 round trip
  • Airline: LATAM Operated by Latam Airlines Argentina AEP–MDZ (1 h 52 m) US$117 round trip
  1. NON-STOP FLIGHT OPTIONS FROM NEW YORK TO MENDOZA (*)

From New York to Buenos Aires:

-Airline: United EWR–EZE (11 h 5 m) US$1,005 round trip

  • Airline: American - LATAM Operated by American Airlines for Latam Airlines Argentina JFK–EZE (10 h 44 m) US$1,083 round trip
  • Airline: Aerolineas Argentinas - Delta JFK–EZE (10 h 55 m) US$1,270 round trip

From Buenos Aires to Mendoza:

  • Airline: Aerolineas Argentinas AEP–MDZ (1 h 55 m) US$115 round trip
  • Airline: LATAM Operated by Latam Airlines Argentina AEP–MDZ (1 h 52 m) US$117 round trip

(*) Total price includes taxes + fees for 1 adult. Additional bag fees and other fees may apply.

Meeting point

Mendoza Park Hyatt Hotel.

FAQs

What experience and skill level do I need to have to join this Polish Glacier Route to Aconcagua expedition?

In order t join the Polish Glacier Route you need to have previous high altitude experience, and be very familiar with the use of ice axe, crampons, and belaying techniques.

Which are the departures for the 2023-24 season for the Polish Glacier Route?

We have the following scheduled expeditions for the 2023-24 season:

Dec 2 – 20, 2023

Dec 9 – 27, 2023

Dec 17 – Jan 4, 2024

Dec 27, 2023 – Jan 14, 2024

Jan 6 – 24, 2024

Jan 12 – Jan 30, 2024

Jan 20 – Feb 7, 2024

Jan 27 – Feb 14, 2024

Feb 3 – 21, 2024

What's NOT included in the price for this tour?

The following items and services are NOT included in the price:

-Round-trip flights to and from Mendoza, Argentina

-Aconcagua climbing permit fee ($700 to $900 depending on season) which you will pay in Mendoza, accompanied by your guide. South Americans pay about half of this amount and Argentinean Citizens about 1/4 of that amount.

-Meals in Mendoza

-Personal equipment

-Passport

-Personal items and services (laundry, snacks, drinks, tips, etc.)

-Expenses incurred in the case of a rescue or early departure from the expedition

-SAT phone charges

What kind of food will we have during the expedition?

Food during the approach and at base camp is quite gourmet, with a barbecue on approach, fresh salads at base camp, meat, pizza, eggs, pancakes, etc. We have a Chef at base Camp!

Up high from base camp up food becomes more Spartan (mountain food).

Cereals, Granola, oat meal, for breakfast.

Snack food for Lunch (more like the entire work day) , Nuts, candy bars, enregy bars, cheese, salami, bread, crackers, dry fruit, etc.

Dinners up high are prepared by the Guides, each guide has a different style but they try to be quite creative with ingredients and flavors some simple dishes like Pasta , Rice, Quinoa, Couscous or Polenta can be done tastefully with a touch of fresh paremessan, mushroom sauce, pesto sauce or curry rice with chicken or Tai food as well.

Vegetarian and vegan as well as any other specific diets we can accommodate.

What's included in the price for the Plosh Glacier Route to Aconcagua?

The following services and items are included in the price:

-Professional Mountain Guides

-2 nights hotel accommodation in Mendoza at the Mendoza Park Hyatt Hotel with breakfast buffet (1 night at the beginning of the expedition and 1 night at the end of the expedition)

-All land transportation

-Mules

-All expedition food

-All group gear such as: tents, stoves, state of the art Base Camp, cooking gear, medical kits, satellite phones, radios, gamow bag, pulse-oximeters, etc.

Are porters available for hire for the ascent?

Yes, you have the option to hire porters at the Base Camp (keep in mind this is not inculded in the price). Porter fees range between $160 and $300 for each load, varying according to the altitude they transport goods to. Should you opt for a porter for every load and movement during the ascent and descent of the mountain, a total of 5 to 6 load carries will be required between Base Camp and High Camp, incurring costs of approximately $1,200 USD for the entire round trip.

How many clients can go with 1 guide?

1 guide can take up to 3 clients on this route, and groups are usually formed by 3 guides with 9 clients. We also have staff at base camp like cooks, mule drivers for the base camp approach and porters available to hire on the higher sections.

How heavy will my backpack be durign the ascent?

For the approach to base camp, mules carry the heavier weight, so you'll only carry around 12 pounds/ 6 kilos.

Above Base Camp, about 40 pounds/20 kilos. If you decide to hire a porter, you will carry less than 20 pounds/10 kilos

Are there vegetarian or vegan options available during the expedition?

Yes, we offer vegetarian and vegan options, as well as any other specific diets we can accommodate. You just have to let us know in advance.

What equipment (clothes and gear) do I need to bring for the expedition?

This is the gear and equipment list you need to bring for Aconcagua:

FEET

__ Socks – 3 pair thick outer socks, synthetic or wool, 3 pair thin inner liner socks, silk, synthetic, or wool (combo of 1 pr

thick & 1 pr thin or 2 pair thick & 1 pr thin), AND 2 pair lightweight silk, synthetic, or wool socks (for approach hike)

__ Plastic or synthetic-leather double mountaineering boots for above Base Camp, NOT SINGLE BOOTS

__ Lightweight hiking boots or sturdy approach shoes for hike to Base Camp

__ Gaitors (for scree, goretex type work well - NOT overboots)

__ One pair velcro-strapped rubber sole sandals (such as tevas or chacos) OR tennis/running shoes for river crossings

__ Lightweight running shoes for hike out last day (can also be used for river crossings on approach hike)

__ Booties, optional but highly recommended – lightweight down or synthetic with cordura soles

UPPER BODY – wear in layers

__ Lightweight synthetic or wool long underwear tops – 2

__ Expedition heavy weight synthetic or wool long underwear top – 1 (or 2 midweight long underwear tops)

__ Heavy fleece jacket (or similar weight synthetic or down micro-puff jacket)

__ Breathable windproof and water-resistant outer jacket, such as goretex, with hood

__ Heavyweight down or synthetic expedition parka with insulated hood (-20 F)

__ Synthetic t-shirts for approach – 2

__ Lightweight, breathable, long sleeved shirt for sun-protection on approach hike

LOWER BODY – wear in layers

__ Synthetic or nylon briefs or underwear - 3 pair

__ Lightweight synthetic or wool long underwear bottoms - 1 pair

__ Expedition heavy weight synthetic or wool long underwear bottoms - 1 pair

__ Soft shell synthetic pants for mid mountain – 1 pair (optional)

__ Fleece pants (full length side zippers recommended) for camp & summit day – medium or heavy weight

__ Breathable windproof and water resistant pants such as Goretex (full length side zippers recommended)

__ Shorts - 1 pair for approach hike

__ Lightweight synthetic breathable pants for sun protection on approach hike

HANDS

__ 1 pair thin wool or synthetic gloves - for lower mountain (windstopper, capilene, fleece, polypro)

__ 1 pair insulated, windproof, and water resistant fingered gloves, such as ski gloves, with longer cuff – for upper

mountain

__ 1 pair heavy insulated mitts for summit day

__ OR substitute for insulated mitts above: a combination of 2 pair mitts (fleece, or wool Dachstein) to fit one inside the

other with room AND 1 pair Goretex wind shells to wear over mitts

HEAD

__ Ski hat, wool or fleece

__ Balaclava, wool, fleece or capilene

__ Baseball cap for sun

SLEEPING GEAR

__ Down or synthetic sleeping bag rated to -20 ºF with compression stuff sack

__ 1 closed cell foam pad and/or 1 inflatable thermarest pad (full length). BOTH recommended

PACK

__ Expedition Backpack, 5000 - 6000 cubic inch / 80-100 liter capacity

__ Day and a half pack for approach, approx 2000 - 3000 cubic inch / 30-50 liter capacity

__ Extra large strong duffel bag w/ LOCK (about 7000 cubic inches/140 liter). THIS IS YOUR MULE

BAG. Must be able to fit all expedition gear & double boots in this bag for mule to carry on approach

__ 1 stuff sack w/ straps or lightweight daypack (15 liter) to use as daypack for hike out (If the top of expedition pack is

a removable fanny pack this can be used as well)

__ Combination lock for duffel left in BC (TSA approved so airport security can open it)

TECHNICAL EQUIPMENT - NEEDED FOR ALL ROUTES ON SUMMIT DAY

__ Crampons, 12 points non-rigid recommended. For Polish Glacier Route: rigid OK

__ Ski poles or sturdy trekking poles - adjustable preferred

__ Crampon bag for plane flight and mule load

For Polish Glacier Route only:

__ Climbing harness, to fit comfortably over bulky clothing

__ Carabiners, 6 regular, 2 locking

__ 1 ascender

__ 30 feet of 6mm perlon rope (for rigging your ice axe, ascender and harness)

__ Shorter ice axe - 60 to 65 cm (in place of longer ice axe used on other routes)

__ Climbing helmet

ESSENTIAL PERSONAL ITEMS

__ Non-breakable plastic bowl, LARGE insulated cup w/ lid, durable spoon & fork - NOT PROVIDED

__ 2 water bottles -1 liter capacity, wide-mouth (hard plastic)

__ 2 water bottle insulators (make sure they fit your water bottles)

__ Headlamp and extra batteries

__ Sunglasses - two pair (optional one as a spare)

__ Ski goggles for summit day & stormy weather

__ Sunscreen lotion SPF 30 or higher - 1 large or 2 small tubes (zinc oxide also recommended)

__ Sun screen lip protection - 1 stick / & 1 or 2 tubes chapstick for dry lips

__ Skin moisturizer - 3 oz.

__ Personal supply of mole skin, band aids, tape, second skin, throat lozenges

__ Pocketknife or Leatherman

__ Toothbrush and toothpaste

__ Toilet paper - 1 or 2 rolls, in a plastic bag (such as a ziplock bag)

__ Antibiotics - 1 cycle broad spectrum (for wound or respiratory infections)

__ Aspirin or Ibuprofen - 30

__ Disposable lighter (always useful on a mountaineering expedition!)

__ Stuff sacks 2-3, assorted sizes (also bring a compression sack to use as daypack on hike out)

__ Iodine or similar water purification tablets – 2 to 3 small new bottles

  • $300-$500 USD cash ($10 & $20 bills) for drinks, snacks, shower, internet in BC, tips, (more if hiring porters) / ($50 &

$100 USD bills for climbing permit)

__ Luggage name tags to label bags stored at Hyatt in Mendoza or in Penitentes

__ Small bag or duffel with shower essentials and clean clothes to be left in Penitentes for the return

OPTIONAL (some of these items may be left in Base Camp - will be taken back to Penitentes by mules)

__ 1 pair Vapor Barrier Liner (VBL) socks

__ Camera, batteries, small solar charger

__ Plug adaptor for hotels

__ Journal, pen/pencil, book, games, i-pod

__ Small towel and soap, baby wipes, foot powder (wet wipes are very handy)

__ Cotton bandana or buff for sun protection

__ Pee bottle -1 liter capacity, wide mouth, plastic nalgene-type bottle with lid (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED for upper

mountain, label w/permanent marker)

__ 1 lightweight, metal, mini thermos, 1/2- 3/4 liter capacity, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED for summit day

__ Your favorite energy bars (we provide full lunches), in original package for customs

__ Hydrating system, 2-quart capacity (i.e. camelback) Does not replace water bottles CAMELBACKS FREEZE - for

approach hike only

__ Portable water purification system (be prepared to share this item with your team) i.e. Katadyn, steripen

__ 2 large plastic garbage bags to use in sleeping bag stuff sack

__ Neoprene or windstopper facemask (for cold summit day), neck gaitor, buff

__ Warm vest or lightweight wind shell

__ Straps for outside of pack to carry crampons, sleeping pad, etc. (essential if pack is smaller)

__ Chemical hand warmers 2 pr - pack out with personal garbage

Is gear available for rent?

Yes, we can rent Sleeping Bags, Expedition Down Coats, Crampons, Ice Axe, etc.

There are also specialized rental shops in Mendoza that we can recommend.

Keep in mind that we do not rent double mountain boots. Double mountain boot rentals are available in Mendoza at local mountain shops for most sizes, although it may be difficult to find larger boot sizes. It is best to get your double boots before you arrive to Mendoza, if possible. Double boot rentals are approximately $160 USD. They need to fit properly & be inspected by you or your guide who will be happy to help you with that.

What's the meeting time and place?

We will meet on Day 1 at Mendoza Park Hyatt hotel.

When should I arrive to Mendoza?

Make sure you get to Mendoza around 3 pm on the first day of your adventure, at the latest. If you want, you can show up in Mendoza a day or two before the actual expedition kicks off. It's a chance to recover from your flight, soak in the Mendoza summer vibes, and maybe grab some last-minute gear. Just a heads up, any extra days or nights you spend in Mendoza aren't included in the price.

What makes this Polish Glacier Route different to other routes in Aconcagua?

The Polish Glacier Route is a more technical route, aimed at clients with previous high altitude experience, and who are very familiar with the use of ice axe, crampons, and belaying techniques.

It's also a quieter route (compared to the Normal Route that starts at Horcones valley), so since the start of the approach at Vacas and Ameghino valleys, you will experience a quieter mountain, with much less people on the trails and on the camps.

What are some recommended accommodations near our adventure location?

We understand that finding the perfect place to stay is an essential part of your adventure experience. To help you with this, we’ve curated a list of three highly recommended hotels that offer comfort, convenience, and a touch of local charm. These accommodations are well-suited for adventurers looking to relax and rejuvenate after an exciting day of exploration
Park Hyatt Mendoza Hotel Casino & Spa Mendoza Argentina
See rooms
Sheraton Mendoza Hotel Mendoza Argentina
See rooms
InterContinental Mendoza Mendoza Argentina
See rooms

About the guide

Guide profile image

-Rodrigo

5.00

(7)

Mountain Guide

An Internationally Certified UIAGM / IFMGA Mountain Guide, Rodrigo has been a guide for 30 years. He has led 24 expeditions to Denali and 28 expeditions to Aconcagua — the highest peaks in North and South America, respectively. He has been a member of expeditions to Shisha Pangma and Cho Oyu in the Himalaya, and his climbs in Patagonia include the North and Central Towers of Paine, Agujas Guillaumet and Poincenot, as well as Cerro Torre attempts. He’s made Patagonian Ice Cap explorations including the first east-west traverse of the northern Ice Cap. He holds first ascents in Antarctica, the Andes and Alaska; speed ascents of Denali, Aconcagua, and Juncal. He’s guided the Ellsworth Mountains and Mt. Vinson in Antarctica and has extensive climbing and guiding experience in Yosemite and the Alps, including Frendo Spur and the Grand Jorasses. He’s a former Technical Committee member for the American Mountain Guides Association and a Senior Guide at Exum Mountain Guides in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Rodrigo speaks fluent English, French and Spanish.

Certificates

ANGM | UIAGM

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What people are saying about -Rodrigo

5.00

Great guides, great equipment, amazed about how good food was. All round a very experienced and top end operator who know what they are doing and will maximise your chances of getting to the summit. Reaching top Aconcagua was one of greatest highlights of my life thank you Aventuras Patagonicas.

5.00

From the start Aventuras Patagonicas was welcoming, which set the trip up on the right foot. The guides, Wes, Lucia and Sebastian were all excellent and worked very hard to get the group of climbers safely up and down the mountain. The food was excellent and well organized. The gear provided on the mountain (tents) were also of good quality. I would climb again with Patagonicas.

5.00

I did a 20 day climb of Aconcagua with this company. The guides were excellent and made the trip as enjoyable as possible. We had hot meals every evening and morning. Aconcagua is a hard mountain and it takes a great deal of effort to reach the top. The guides at Patagonicas are committed to each client's safety on the mountain. I would recommend them over any other company on the mountain.


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