|Aconcagua (6962m) via Valley Guanacos|
At 6962m Aconcagua is the highest peak in the Andes mountain range, and the highest mountain outside of the Himalayas. By taking the Guanacos Valley route, you will hike through landscapes that have few tourists and it allows you take another route up to the summit than the normal route. Although not technically difficult, the high altitude and ice conditions can make this a very challenging climb. You will have 14 days from arriving at base camp to make the summit before descending down the normal route.
Please check the gear list to see what you will need to bring for the trip.
Day 1: Mendoza (760m) – Penitents (2500m)
Transfer from Mendoza to Penitents which will give us an opportunity to see some of the amazing scenery of the area.
Day 2: Penitents – Pampa Leña (2800m)
This will be the first day of walking along the Vacas Valley, we will follow the river, enjoy the high desert scenery and make camp at Pampa Leña.
Day 3: Pampa Leña – Casa de Piedra (3200m)
From Pampa Leña we will need to cross the river Vacas, and then the valley will start to open up. This is an easy day following the same valley, with a gentle rise. We will also get our first view of Aconcagua, with the Polich Glacier.
Day 4: Casa de Piedra – Plaza Guanco, Base camp (3800m)
This will be our last day following the Vacas Valley, where we will need to cross serval rivers along the way but we will be rewarded with views of glaciers against the desert backdrop. Hopefully we may be able to see condors and other wildlife native to the national park. We will arrive at the base camp for Aconcagua and make camp.
Day 5: Base camp
Rest day in base camp and an opportunity to prepare for the following days of climbing.
Day 6 to 19: Climbing the mountain
There are 4 camps along the way, and these days will be spent moving from one camp to another, also enabling us to acclimatise to the high altitude.
Day 20: Colera, Camp 4 – Plaza de Mules (4200m)
We will descend the mountain by the normal route to finish the day in a different base camp - Plaza de Mules.
Day 21: Plaza de Mules – Penitents
Another easy days walk, we will follow the Horcones Valley to take us out of the National Park.
Day 22: Penitents – Mendoza
Transfer back to Mendoza.
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