Destination

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Duration
16 Days
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Tour Type
Adventure
Climb
Trek
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Group Size
12
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Tour Guide
1
Argentina, Perú

Ausangate to Aconcagua

An incredible 16-day trek & climb adventure in the Cordillera Vilcanota & Aconcagua National Park.

This is a trek & climb program designed to enable you to climb some of the best peaks in the Andes. Experience at altitude is strongly recommended; also, a period of acclimatization in Cusco or the Sacred Valley.

 

Peru

Starting in Peru you’ll begin your adventure in Peru; by trekking the circumnavigation of the Nevado Ausangate (6,400m).

Following then; is a stunning and diverse route showing you a part of Peru that is largely untouched by tourism. Communities here continue to live traditionally and without many of the modern utilities that are in use today. Collecting you early from Cusco by taking private transport; to meet up with our arrieros and mules at the starting point. They will accompany us for the duration of the trek and climb expedition. Following a trek of 5 days, you’ll transfer back to Cusco and rest for the night.

 

Argentina

Then; transferring to Cusco Airport for a series of domestic flights down to Mendoza, Argentina. On arrival you’ll spend the night before transferring to Penitentes for the start of your trek to Aconcagua.

Aconcagua Mountain is a part of the Andes mountain range, located in the province of Mendoza, Argentina. The summit is located just 15 kilometres away from the international border with Chile. It is one of the Seven Summits and the highest mountain outside of the Himalayas.

Following with a good climate, you’ll trek directly from Penitentes to the Plaza de Mulas (4,300m). From here you’ll begin your ascent to the summit via a number of high-altitude camps (Camp 1 – Canda, Camp 2 – Nido de Condores, Camp 3 – Colera). From the summit you’ll be able to enjoy an incredible 360° view from the summit that you’ll never forget: infinite mountains, white fields and glaciers, including the stunning peaks of Cerro Mercedario and Cerro Tolosa.

Descending back via the valley of Horcones, you’ll once more reach Penitentes. There is an option to spend the night here before transferring back to Mendoza for your onward flight out with plenty of time to reflect on an incredible adventure!

Mountain & Summit Stats
Altitude: 6,962m.
Route: Normal – North face
Difficulty: Non-technical & No risk of Avalanche.
Equipment: Expedition (Please refer to the videos below for equipment).
Requirements: Good physical condition and recommended prior experience at altitude.
Summit success: About 50%
Threats: Biggest threat is the cold (-20 to -30c) and altitude.
Summit Season: November – March

Safety & Security: Your safety and security is our main priority.
Radio Equipment: On the expedition we will have radios & access to a rescue helicopter if required.
Medical: We will have oxygen available on the expedition, oximetro (to read oxygen levels in your blood), diamox (to combat any bad effects of altitude sickness), along with a complete medical box set for the expedition.
Health: Your health will be checked at regular intervals along the route (e.g. at every camp). All of our guides are fully trained in first aid and mountain rescue.
Pacing: It is important to go at a pace you are comfortable with and our guides will help support you in this.
Insurance: It is vital that you have adventure insurance for this trip.

Park Entrance Fees
Entrance fees for Aconcagua National Park for summit expeditions in 2024 are $800 USD per person.
National Park Website

Included
Breakfast x 15
Lunch x 13
Dinner x 11
Private Transport – collection & drop-off
Professional bilingual high-mountain guide
Arrieros & Mules
All Camping & Dining equipment (Sleeping bags to hire + Trekking Poles)
One night’s accommodation in Mendoza
Domestic Flights from Cusco to Mendoza

Not Included
International Airfare
Hotels before & after (can be organised as part of trip)
Extension trips to Machu Picchu
Tips for crew
Crampons, Ice Axe, Harness, Helmet (can be hired as part of trip)
Adventure Travel & Evacuation Insurance
Entrance permits to the Aconcagua National Park (We will help you secure these permits)
Any additional extras


Joining Arrangements There will be a pre-trek briefing held usually the evening before departure, at your hotel, to go over the details of the trek and any specific requirements not already captured.
Food & Water Prior to setting off we recommend you steer clear of street food and only eat in good restaurants, to avoid any stomach complaints. Likewise with tap water, it is largely untreated, please only consume bottled water only or sterilised water if you have the right equipment.
Special Diets We’ll ensure that we cater for all of your dietary needs, at the point of booking we’ll collect this information from you. We can secure special menu requests also for your trek party.
Trekking Crew We are able to customise our treks to suit you, but usually our treks are guided by a professional bilingual guide, mountain cook, arriero (horseman) and mules to carry all equipment (passenger horses also available on request). They become a large part of your trekking expedition and it’s a great experience working together.
Acclimatisation
This is a really important part of your trip planning process, please find a link below which explains a little more about preparing for altitude. Altitude Preparation
Preparation
Attached below are a couple of links which will explain how to prepare for your trip & trek in advance of your arrival. We recommend being prepared in advance to save time & stress whilst you’re in Peru. Trip Planning | Trek Planning
Machu Picchu An excursion to Machu Picchu can be included as part of your trip, including professional bilingual guide, entrance tickets, return trip bus tickets, Huayna Picchu & Machu Picchu Mountains (mountain climbs to be confirmed on reservation) & your return train ticket to Cusco. To be confirmed on reservation.
Covid-19 (Coronavirus) We are working with the latest protocols issued by the Ministerio de Salud (Ministry of Health) to ensure our operations are safe and compliant for the future. We also have access to on-call health services for your time with us.
Covid-19 (Useful Links) World Health Organisation | World Health Organisation – Peru | Covid-19 Data – Peru | Covid-19 Daily Statistics
Available Discounts Throughout 2022 we’re offering a 15% discount for each member of a group larger than 4+
Reservation Please contact us to reserve your trek and we will send you our deposit & payment options.
Customer Service Please feel free to contact us at any point before your trip for any queries or problems.

 

Equipment

These videos highlight the best personal equipment to bring for the expedition.





5,0
Valorado con 5,0 de 5
5,0 de 5 estrellas (basado en 3 reseñas)
Excelente100%
Muy buena0%
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Andy (ENG) - Aconcagua Summit, Argentina

Valorado con 5,0 de 5
diciembre 17, 2023

In the lead-up, James always responded quickly and took an interest in individual circumstances and concerns. He subsequently proved to be an excellent facilitator for my trip and Edu could not have been a better guide and companion.

Avatar para Andy Hawkins
Andy Hawkins

Divya & Samira (USA) - Summit Aconcagua, Argentina

Valorado con 5,0 de 5
diciembre 17, 2023

Wonderful expedition! Unfortunately, I didn’t make it to the summit. Several mishaps prevented this, from a lost shoe to an injured leg, to bad weather. However, there are no regrets as I went to Camp Colera. My new record has reached 6000m, I’m very happy and I made wonderful memories and some great friends. It’s a life-changing experience James😇

Avatar para Divya & Samira
Divya & Samira

Bryan & Ryan (USA) - Summit Aconcagua, Argentina

Valorado con 5,0 de 5
diciembre 16, 2023

Aconcagua – Epic! This was an epic adventure, with all the elements necessary to make it an incredible challenge – Altitude, unpredictable weather conditions, mules & arrieros, health problems, and Alpine conditions!

Avatar para Bryan & Ryan Bach (USA)
Bryan & Ryan Bach (USA)

Details

Itinerary

Landing in Lima you'll transfer directly by domestic flight to Cusco. Accommodation: Cusco, 3* Hotel
Today is a free day for acclimatization at a lower altitude, to explore Cusco, Sacsayhuaman, and/or the Sacred Valley.
  • Accommodation: Cusco, 3* Hotel
  • Meals: Breakfast
You'll depart from your hotel in Cusco early this morning for a scenic 3-hour drive to the village of Tinqui (3,800 m), located at the base of the Vilcanota mountain range. Along the way, you'll observe local farmers and herders with their alpaca flocks. In Tinqui, you'll meet your crew of mules and their handlers, and start your trek by heading towards your campsite in Upis (4,400 m).
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The first day of trekking is relatively smooth and passes through hilly grasslands where you may encounter vizcachas (chinchilla-like rodents), condors, and foxes. Once you arrive in Upis, you will be rewarded with views of the Ausangate glaciers rising above the site. End the day with a refreshing soak in the nearby hot springs.
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Overnight: Upis
  • Meals included: Lunch, Dinner
Get ready for a day of more intense trekking. From your campsite in Upis, you will climb through the Arapa pass (4,800 m) before reaching Uchuy Pucacocha (“little red lake”), one of the several dazzling mountain lakes in the region. Marvel at its waterfalls, and continue onwards to Jatun Pucacocha (“big red lake”), where you will camp along its shores.
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Overnight: Jatun Paucacocha
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
After a hearty breakfast in Jatun Pucacocha, you'll start your journey to Ausangate Base Camp. You will cross two different passes today. The Apuchata pass (4,900 m) comes first, followed by a descent to the turquoise Laguna Ausangate Q'ocha. After taking some time to rest and enjoy the scenery, you will continue up Palomani Pass. At 5,200 m, this is the highest pass of the trek.
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The ascent is challenging and steep, but well worth it. Upon reaching the summit, you'll be treated to spectacular views of the snowcapped peaks of Tres Picos and Puka Punta. Now, you'll start the descent toward Ausangate Base Camp (4,510 m). Here, amidst the highlands meadows and icy moraines, you'll set up camp for the night.
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Overnight: Ausangate Base Camp
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
The last day of pass crossing begins with a tranquil hike from Ausangate Base Camp to Lake Ticllacocha. Along the way, more vizcachas and perhaps even rare camel-like vicuñas may be roaming the green grasses of the valley.
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Then, rise for your final challenge: Q'ampa pass (5,050 m). You'll see some strikingly beautiful glaciers as you tread over the snowy scree to summit the pass. Once you reach the top, you can see the towering Apu Salkantay.
After descending the pass, you'll set up camp for the last time at Pacchanta (4,360 m), and rest in the soothing waters of the site’s hot springs.
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Overnight: Pacchanta
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
This morning, enjoy an easy 3 to 4-hour hike downhill from Pachanta back to the village of Tinqui (4,237 m) where you'll eat lunch. After lunch, bid farewell to the muleteers, and transfer to your hotel in Cusco for some well-deserved rest.
  • Overnight: Cusco
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch
On Day 8, you'll take a series of Domestic Flights from:
1. Cusco - 2. Lima - 3. Santiago - 4. Mendoza.
  • Overnight: Mendoza
  • Meals: Breakfast
On Day 9, you'll finish the administration for your climb permit to Aconcagua in Mendoza.
  • Overnight: Mendoza
  • Meals: Breakfast
On arrival into Penitentes we'll load our mules with the equipment required for the high camps. Starting off from Pentitentes you'll trek for around 3-4 hrs. The trek paths are very dry and dusty, but always surrounded by the backdrop of the stunning range of Andean mountains. Glimpses of Aconcagua are present on the first day. You'll reach camp at Confluencia after only a few hours trekking.
  • Accommodation: Camping Confluencia
  • Maximum Altitude: 2,950 masl / 9678 fasl
  • Approximate Walking Time: 3-4 hrs
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Today it's a very early start with breakfast before departure. You'll begin the trek very early at around 7:00 am, today the estimated trekking time is 8-10 hrs. Today is a fairly long stretch, but always accompanied by mules being driven through the Horcones Valley. Lots of water, sunglasses, headwear and sunscreen is vital for this day. On arrival to base camp at the 'Plaza de Mulas' you'll have a place to stop and rest before the push to the summit.
  • Accommodation: Camping Plaza de Mulas
  • Maximum Altitude: 4,500 masl / 14764 fasl
  • Approximate Walking Time: 8-10 hrs
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Taking breakfast before departure. You'll initiate the ascent towards the direction of the first advanced camp, this is 'Plaza Canada'. The trekking time is from 3 to 4 hrs. Installation of Camp, the night will be cold but it's important to be prepared with very good equipment.
  • Accommodation: Camping Canada
  • Maximum Altitude: 4,910 masl / 16108 fasl
  • Approximate Walking Time: 3-4 hrs
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Taking breakfast before departure. You'll continue the ascent to the second camp, 'Nido de Condores'. An impressive sight awaits of the Andes mountain range. You are high enough (over three miles above the Pacific) to grandstand above the smaller part of the Andes. Trekking from 2-4 hrs. Installation of camp.
  • Accommodation: Camp Nido de Condores
  • Maximum Altitude: 5,450 masl / 17880 fasl
  • Approximate Walking Time: 2-4 hrs
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Taking breakfast before departure. Ascent to the third high field "Camp Colera". Time estimated from 2-4 hrs. Installation of the High Field camp. This is a very important day, to rest early in the evening and take a light dinner.
  • Accommodation: Camp Colera
  • Maximum Altitude: 5,870 masl / 19258 fasl
  • Approximate Walking Time: 2-4 hrs
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
This day begins at 4:00 am, with breakfast. You'll climb the North Edge up to the refuge Independence, located at around 6,450 m. It is in this place where the sunbeams reach us for the first time during this day. You'll encounter the " Portezuelo of the Wind ", where you must face strong winds even in days of relative calmness. From there voyaging on the top part of the West face and climb " The Canaleta ", a channel of 300 mts. that leads us to the summit edge. After The Canaleta, the " Edge of the Gump " represents an easy voyage up to the summit. The latter part normally takes us an hour. From the edge of the Gump we can observe directly under our feet the 3,000 mts. of vertical ice and rock of the South Wall of Aconcagua, considered to be one of the biggest walls of the world. At the summit is the ultimate prize: a sight of 360 º and the experience of personal feelings and indescribable emotions, which only are understood by experiencing it for yourself. The satisfaction of reaching your aim, coupled with the termination of the expedition, mean it is time to begin the ascent and make your way back to Mendoza. It is necessary to save some of your energy for the descent back to the 'Plaza de Mulas'.
  • Accommodation: Camp Plaza de Mulas
  • Maximum Altitude: 6,962 masl / 22841 fasl
  • Approximate Walking Time: 8-10 hrs
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Leaving early in the morning after a good breakfast you'll head back to Penitentes from the Plaza de Mulas, where transport will be waiting to transport us back to Mendoza for onward connecting flights.

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Base Price $5299

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