Tuesday, January 15, 2013

2013 Aconcagua Expedition Underway

Our 2013 Aconcagua Expedition has gathered in Mendoza, Argentina at the start of their attempt to climb the highest mountain in the Western Hemisphere.  Jared Bonea will be leading the group and will be climbing with Ted Brown and Julia Debold.

Ted, Julia, and Jared in Mendoza

Jared arrived in Mendoza on Sunday and Ted and Julia arrived yesterday.  They are in the process of sorting out luggage that was misplaced by the airline (fairly common unfortunately) and will be headed toward the mountain as soon as everything arrives.

They will be climbing via the Polish Glacier side of the mountain and will spend one day in Penitentes, near the trailhead, and then will spend three days hiking from the trailhead of the Vacas Valley to their basecamp at Plaza Argentina.

This is their planned itinerary:

Jan 13 - Day 1 : Leave US and fly to Mendoza, Argentina.
Jan 14 - Day 2: Arrive in Mendoza in afternoon or early evening. (Night in Mendoza)
Jan 15 - Day 3: Drive to Penitentes (8200') pack mule loads, and spend night.
Jan 16 - Day 4: Drive to Vacas Valley (7,600'), hike to La Lena (8,850'). (7 miles/4-5 hrs.)
Jan 17 - Day 5: Hike to Casa Piedra (10,500') (8 miles/5-7 hours.)
Jan 18 - Day 6: Hike up Relinchos Valley to Plaza Argentina BC (13,800') (6 miles/6 hrs.)
Jan 19 - Day 7: Rest Day at base camp.
Jan 20 - Day 8: Carry to Camp 1 (16,200') (4-6 hours up) & return to base camp.
Jan 21 - Day 9: Rest Day at Base camp.
Jan 22 - Day 10: Move to Camp 1.
Jan 23 - Day 11: Carry to Camp 2 (18,200') & return to Camp 1. (5 hours RT)
Jan 24 - Day 12: Rest at Camp 1.
Jan 25 - Day 13: Move to Camp 2.
Jan 26 - Day 14: Move to Camp 3 (19,600')
Jan 27 - Day 15: Possible Summit Day
Jan 28 - Day 16: Possible Summit Day
Jan 29 - Day 17: Possible Summit Day
Jan 30 - Day 18: Descend to Plaza Mulas on Ruta Normal
Jan 31 - Day 19: Complete hike out and return to Mendoza.
Feb 1 - Day 20: Extra Day
Feb 2 - Day 21: Return flight to US
Feb 3 - Day 22: Arrive in US

Bear in mind that the schedule on these things is heavily dependent on things like the weather, how well everyone acclimates, and of course, your luggage arriving on time.  We will be posting updates as we get them from the mountain.  Remember that "no news is good news," and there will often be gaps between reports, particularly when the group is simply resting.

More information on Guided Aconcagua Expeditions.

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