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ACONCAGUA EXPEDITION NORMAL ROUTE

Length Trip
18 days

Season
From November to January


Level
High


Style
Mountaineering expedition


DETAILS

Aconcagua, at 6962m / 22.841 ft, is the highest mountain on the American Continent. It is one of the Seven Summits, composed of the highest mountains on the seven continents. Aconcagua’s Normal Route, while requiring excellent physical conditioning, can be ascended by people who do not have a high level of technical mountain experience, enabling them to reach one of the highest points on the Earth.

Because of the low pressure of oxygen at altitude, some people feel sick, get a headache and in some cases, develop mountain sickness. Our itinerary is designed to reduce the possibility of suffering altitude related problems. Our ascension up the mountain is gradual and strategically combined with rest days.
SOME REASONS TO CHOOSE US:

  • We are expert Aconcagua guides (IFMGA-UIAGM)
  • Guide – client ratio (1:3) guaranteeing personalized attention
  • More than 18 years experience guiding on Aconcagua
  • Knowledge how to reduce of the symptoms and problems associated with altitude
  • Daily acclimatization monitoring and the ability to make necessary adjustments during the expedition to maximize the possibility of summitting
  • Best Base Camp service
  • Porters for group gear: One (1) porter for every three (3) clients
  • Better quality equipment: The North Face tents, pulse Oximeter, hyperbaric chamber, communication equipment.
ITINERARY

Flight to Mendoza
Santiago, Chile and Buenos Aires, Argentina are your two options for connecting with same-day flights to Mendoza.

Day 1: Arrival in Mendoza (2.493ft / 760m)
Your guide will pick you up at the airport and bring you, via private transport, to your hotel. At the hotel, you will gather with the guides and the rest of the group to go over the expedition plan and check your gear. In the evening, at a restaurant that offers typical Argentinean food, we will enjoy a Welcome Dinner.

Day 2: Mendoza/Penitentes (8.858ft / 2700m)
After obtaining Aconcagua Park Permits, we will travel by vehicle 112 miles/ 180 kilometers northwest to Penitentes. Along the way, we will see many vineyards and valleys as we follow and cross the turbulent waters of the Mendoza River. In Penitentes, we will stay at an Hotel. We will also use the hotel as our staging ground to organize the loads that will be transported by mules.

Day 3: Penitentes/Confluencia (10.826ft / 3300m)
On route to the Park entrance, we will have a brief view of Puente del Inca, a natural bridge formed by sulfur thermal waters. We will enter the Park via the Quebrada de Horcones, and from here, we will get a spectacular view of the South Face of Aconcagua. After approximately three hours of hiking, we will arrive at Confluencia and be rewarded with well-earned snacks and appetizers.

Day 4: Confluencia/Plaza Francia (13.123ft / 4000m) /Confluencia
A day of trekking on dark glaciers will bring us to Plaza Francia lookout where it is common to observe, in the distance, large avalanches on the South Face of Aconcagua. After lunch, we will start our return to Confluencia where, as part of our acclimatization program, we will sleep a second night.

Day 5: Confluencia/Plaza de Mulas (14.337ft / 4370m)
A beautiful 12,5 mi/20 km valley separates Confluencia camp and our Base Camp: Plaza de Mulas. In a long and demanding day, we will traverse Aconcagua’s west side. Crossing rivers will be part of our path across Playa Ancha (Wide Beach), an extensive flat and sandy glacial valley which permits us to slowly gain altitude.

After crossing Playa Ancha, the terrain becomes markedly steeper, allowing us to quickly gain altitude until we arrive at the Colombia Refuge, destroyed years ago by a winter storm.

A short break will allow us to recuperate enough energy for the final challenge of the day: the steep “Cuesta Brava”. Once this final section is complete, we will arrive at Base Camp Plaza de Mulas. This day takes approximately 8 hours.
Day 6: Rest Day at Plaza de Mulas
Adapting to altitude requires time to rest and recover your energy.

Day 7: Plaza de Mulas/Camp 1 “Canada” (16.568ft / 5050m)/Plaza de Mulas (14.337ft / 4370m)
Carrying our food and equipment to Camp Canada not only reduces the amount that we will need to carry up on Day 9, but also serves to further our acclimatization. Our efforts for this hard day will be rewarded with beautiful views of Mt.Cuerno, Mt. Plomo, Mt. Juncal and the other mountains surrounding us.

Day 8: Plaza de Mulas (14.337ft / 4370m)
This will be our second rest day at Plaza de Mulas. We will practice using crampons on the Horcones Glacier and, after lunch, we will prepare our gear for the ascent towards the summit.

Day 9: Plaza de Mulas/Camp 1 “Canada” (16.568ft / 5050m)
The ascent to Camp 1 Canada takes about 4 hours. The path zigzags over the northern part of the West Face and provides us with an incredible view of the entire valley and of the surrounding mountains.

With the help of porters, we will set up our camp and later we’ll rest, hydrate ourselves and enjoy a magnificent sunset while we eat our dinner.

Day 10: Camp 1 Canada/Camp 2 Nido de Cóndores (18.241ft / 5560m)
We will ascend to Camp 2 “Nido de Cóndores” (Condors Nest) in approximately 5 hours. The panorama is increasingly more intense as we progress and, at this altitude, you can see the Andean Cordillera from North to South.

We again will have the help of our porters to transport our equipment and to set up camp.

Day 11: Camp 2 Nido de Cóndores (18.241ft / 5560m)
It is important to continue with our acclimatization and gradual ascent. For this reason, we will concentrate on recuperating our energy for the last part of the expedition. This day will be spent taking a short walk to the summit of Mt. Manso 17.700 ft / 5400 m and to some other view points around Camp Nido de Cóndores.

Day 12: Camp 2 Nido de Cóndores/Camp 3 Berlin or Cólera (19.356ft / 5900m)
We will break down camp and head out towards Camp 3 “Berlin” or Cólera, a trek that will take approximately 4 hours. During this section of the journey, we will see how the smaller 5000 m adjoining mountains appear to have become smaller and smaller.

Day 13: Camp 3 Berlin/Summit (22.841ft / 6962m)/Camp 3 Berlin or Cólera
Before sunrise, we will begin our ascent of the Northwest Face.

The first rays of sun will hit us just as we are arriving at Independence Refuge (20.669ft / 6300m). We will continue towards Portezuelo del viento (Col of the Wind) where we can see the route we will travel to the summit.

“La Travesia” The traverse that crosses the “Grand Acarreo” big scree area will bring us to the base of the famous “Canaleta”, a steep and precise section. Reaching the Ridge of the Guanaco, the ridge that unites the South summit with the North summit, we will walk not far from the edge, with a close view of the South Face.

The landscape and the summit so close will inspire us to dig deep for the last steps. At 22.841ft / 6962m, we will be on the highest point of the American Continent, with an awe inspiring view of the Andean Cordillera.

Generally on summit day, from Camp 3 Berlin to summit and back to Camp 3 Berlin takes between 10 and 14 hours.

Days 14/15: Extra Days
We count these days of the expedition as extras days in case of poor weather or other circumstances that disrupt the normal schedule. These days are added in to increase the probability of summitting.

Day 16: Campo 3/Plaza de Mulas
The descent from Camp Berlin to Plaza de Mulas takes about 3 hours. We will retrace the same route we used while ascending.
We will finish off the day with a celebratory dinner and toasts with our expedition group members.

Day 17: Plaza de Mulas/Mendoza
After breakfast, we will organize the loads that will be transported by mules. This will allow us to travel lightly, with only a small backpack with water, food and an extra warm layer. We will descend via the Quebrada de Horcones.

Our transportation will be waiting for us at the Park entrance, ready to bring us back to the hotel in Mendoza.

At day’s end, we will have our final feast together and commemorate the experience with a certificate of achievement.

Day 18: Return Flight
Your guide will bring you by private transportation to the airport in Mendoza.

GEAR LIST
  • Comfortable  backpack  of  75  liters
  • Daypack  (op6onal)
  • Headlamp  if  possible,  light  and  small  (Tikka  type)
  • Sleeping  bag  expedi6on  type  at  least  -­‐20ºC  (-­‐4ºF)  (1  kg  of  down  preferred)
  • Ridge  Rest  or  Thermarest  sleeping  pad-­‐  full  length  and  repair  kit
  • Pocketknife,  plate,  cup,  spoon,  fork  (for  al6tude  camps)
  • Water  boMles  (two  1-­‐liter  or  one  2-­‐liter  boMle)
  • Camelbak  (Op6onal)
  • Thermos  (1-­‐liter)
  • Sunscreen  SPF  30-­‐40
  • Lip  balm  SPF  40
  • Personal  care  items  (Moisturizer,  wet  wipes,  etc.)
  • Personal  first  aid  kit
  • Hand  warmers  4  pairs  (op6onal)
  • Book,  music  or  anything  to  entertain  yourself  in  the  tent
  • Earplugs  (op6onal)
CLOTHING
  • (CoMon  blends  are  not  acceptable)
  • Long  sleeve  T  shirt
  • Lightweight  long  underwear  tops  and  boMoms  (2  pairs)
  • Expedi6on  weight  long  underwear  top  and  boMom  (1  pair)
  • Fleece  Jackets  (1  lightweight  and  1  midweight  to  heavyweight)
  • Insulated  down  or  synthe6c  jacket
  • Waterproof  &  breathable  jacket  (Gore-­‐Tex  or  so]-­‐shell)
  • Waterproof  &  breathable  pants  (Gore-­‐Tex  or  so]-­‐shell)
  • Fleece  pants
HEAD
  • Sun  cap  or  hat  and  bandana  to  protect  the  neck  and  head
  • Wool  or  fleece  hat
  • Balaclava  (midweight  to  heavyweight)
  • Sunglasses  with  UV  filter
  • Ski  goggles
  • *If  you  wear  contact  lenses  or  glasses,  we  recommend  packing  an  extra  pair
HANDS
  • Synthe6c  gloves  (2  pair  lightweight,  fleece  or  polypropylene)
  • Fleece  miMens  (1  pair)
  • Gore-­‐Tex  overmiMs  (Gore-­‐Tex  or  down  miMs  such  as  The  North  Face  Mountain  Guide  MiM
  • recommended)
FEET
  • Liner  socks  (2-­‐3  pairs  of  smooth  wool,  nylon  or  polypropylene)
  • Thick  socks  (3  pairs)
  • Sandals  or  any  light  and  comfortable  footwear  (op6onal)
  • Light  hiking  boots  or  trekking  shoes
  • Double/Plas6c  boots  (La  Spor6va  Span6k  type)
  • Gaiters  (large  enough  to  fit  over  the  boots)
TECHNICAL  EQUIPMENT
  • Crampons
  • Trekking  poles  (telescopic)
TRAVELING
  • Duffel  bag  (large  and  durable  enough  to  hold  your  equipment  during  mule  transport)
  • Small  duffel  bag  to  leave  extra  clothes  in  Hotel
  • Bathing  suit  for  swimming  pool  in  Mendoza
  • Travel  clothe

PHOTO GALLERY


Price per person
US$ -.


  • High Mountain Guides IFMGA / UIAGM, AAGM
  • All private ground transportation mentioned in the itinerary
  • Two (2) nights accommodation in an four-star hotel in Mendoza (breakfast included)
  • One (1) night accommodation in Hotel in Penitentes (breakfast and dinner included)
  • Assistance and transport to obtain Aconcagua Park Permit
  • All meals and beverages on the mountain. Base Camp, meals served in dining domes.
  • Welcome dinner on first night (does not include drinks)
  • Complete service at Camp Confluencia (max of two nights)
  • Complete service at Camp Plaza de Mulas (max of five nights)
  • Porters for group equipment (1 porter)
  • Mules to transport equipment (maximum 66lbs/30kg)
  • Tents (The North Face)
  • All cooking equipment
  • Communication equipment
  • First aid kit, oximeter
  • Oxygen tube, in case of emergency

NOT INCLUDED

  • Aconcagua Provincial Park permits
  • Costs associated with leaving the expedition early or emergency rescue
  • Medical and travel insurance
  • Personal porters
  • Other costs not specified in the list of included services


On request

ANDESCROSS
IS RECOMMENDED BY

70% RATE OF RETURNING CLIENTS FOR OVER 10 YEARS

The Andescross family comes back to Southamerica with us and also to Antarctica, Norway, Iceland and the Alps for more good times.

“Back in 2006 I decided I wanted to try backcountry skiing and soon after I ended up contacting Jorgito at Andescross, which was already a very respected guiding company in Argentina.”

The idea of climbing all the mountains and volcanos in patagonia in the winter time and skiing them on the way down sounded too good to be true. Our first trip with Andescross was to Frey Hut with a couple of my brothers. The skiing conditions were as bad as Patagonia can offer so we ended up 2 days stuck in the hut in the midle of a storm and one day skiing on pure ice… 

Marcos Q.Tigre, BA, Argentina

“About 10 years ago I contacted Jorge about doing a hut to hut ski trip in the mountains around Bariloche. I chose him because he was a fully certified International Mountain guide.”

This trip proved to be nothing short of fantastic. Jorge was professional, friendly, knowledgeable of the area we were traveling through and was a great travel partner. He took care of my travel arrangements in Bariloche, booked my room for me before and after the trip, and even picked me up at the airport. The next year, I returned for a volcano ski trip with Jorge. We were fortunate enough to ski from the summit of four volcanoes. In the last decade, I have traveled with him at least 8 times.  We have skied in Chile and Argentina numerous times, including a trip to the Patagonian Ice-fields.

Tomfriend more than client since 2005

“I have skied with Jorge and Andescross in the Andes and the Alps in Europe.   Simply put, the Andes Mountain range is Jorge’s backyard and he knows then well.”

In my view, I think it would be very difficult to find another South American based guide with comparable years of experience in the Andes, guiding credentials, and local knowledge.  Over the years, Jorge has gained significant knowledge of the Alps and many other mountain ranges in the world which he includes in his worldwide adventure trips.  He is able to quickly gauge conditions, make safe decisions, and find great untracked skiing.  

Peter Musziclient for first time in 2008

“Jorge se ha convertido con el tiempo en un amigo cercano más que en un guía.”

Hemos compartido muchas aventuras juntos en varias partes del mundo como los Alpes, Bariloche y Chalten, y siempre regresamos de cada viaje pensando en el próximo. Para que un viaje sea exitoso tiene que tener su cuota de riesgo y cautela, algo muy difícil de lograr pero que Jorge siempre ha sabido manejar. Seguramente les quemara la cabeza hablando de… Paciencia estimados clientes!!, nadie es perfecto.

Francisco J.San Isidro, BA, Argentina

“In just over a six year period, we have done five trips with Jorge and have committed to a sixth next year. We must like this guy! Jorge is THE guide for your Patagonia adventures…and beyond! ”

Our first trip with Jorge in 2010 was for backcountry skiing around Bariloche, Argentina. While we were temporarily weathered out of higher terrain due to high avalanche danger from tons of new snow, we never lacked for fun, challenging, and noteworthy alternatives. He shared with us his hometown stashes, something only a generous local guide could do. Jorge is a consummate mountain guide. He is completely client focused. He is a first rate professional. We trust his judgement, thrill in his ski adventures, and have been blessed to enjoy the beautiful outdoors around the world with him.

Larina & BobSeattle, WA, USA

“40 years ago I flew down to Argentina in my summer for downhill training in the Andes.
I was then racing on the World Cup circuit and so having 4 weeks on snow in summer was really useful training.”

I fell in love with Bariloche and returned the next year again. Sadly this was the last time I made to South America and then, when skiing in Iceland, I bumped into a friend of our guide, John Falkiner. We shared a few beers waiting for our airplane to fly home and John explained that his friend, Jorge, was a guide down in Argentina and that helped in Bariloche.

Konrad Bartelski A British Legend in Ski Racing in 1981

“Jorge and team helped with all the fairly complex planning and logistics for a supported backpacking trip across the Andes”

From Bariloche to Puerto Frias for our group of 10 people, and guided us safely along the route.  He and his guides were exceptionally competent, knowledgeable and professional, and everyone had a great time.  I would highly recommend Andescross!

Cheryl from The Mountaineers Hiking Club, Seattle WA

“I am currently travelling the world on a sabbatical, looking for amazing experiences. During a stop across south america, I wanted to rock climb in the Frey national park, near Bariloche.”

I found the Andescross team on the internet, and they teamed me up for 3 days with a world class guide instructor. I am a novice rock climber, and my guide Luciano not only provided me with amazing climbing coaching tips, but allowed me to push myself to go beyond my comfort zone, in all safety. And once the climbing was over (once summits were achieved and I could not feel my forearms anymore), it was time for some of the best hospitality I have found on the road this last year. Great dinners, food, friends and laughter to fill our evening, until the call of the rock would get us out of our sleeping bag the next morning.

Patrick , Ex-Google CFOSFO , USA

“Jorge has excellent personal skills and appreciation of my climbing abilities. ”

Brian climber from CanadaI had the pleasure of meeting Jorge in December 2008. My wife and I were in Bariloche, on holiday in Argentina. Jorge had been recommended to us by a climbing friend back home in Canada. I was able to contact him by phone and we worked out a rendez-vous at the Refugio Frey for a day’s climbing on the rock. His knowledge of the area and the realistic time needed to complete various options, made it easy for me to reach a decision. What followed was one of the best days in the mountains that I have experienced over a lifetime in the sport.

Brian, 65, IrishCanadian climbing legend of Squamish, Canada

“Had a FANTASTIC time and thank you so much for all your help and the great guides. Great meeting you!!!!”

We are in BA, but head to Brazil tomorow and am just going to eat, drink and sleep! Anytime you head to Europe, you always have a place to stay in London and hopefully we will be back SOON!”

SachaLondon, UK, January 08

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