Argentina’s Mount Aconcagua: Travel Guides to the Aconcagua Peak

“The Sentinel of Stone,” Aconcagua, towers higher than any mountain range except the Himalayas. It is South America’s tallest peak and one of the Seven Summits, and it can be found in the western part of Argentina, right in the middle of the Central Andes.

In order of increasing difficulty, some paths lead up to the peak. Tour groups typically choose one of two simple paths for their Aconcagua expeditions.

·         Normal route

During the busy season, the normal way is rarely affected by ice. From Plaza de Mulas, climbers take a path that crosses Nido de Cóndores and Camp Berlin before facing the difficult Canaleta scree (33° slope, 400 m long) to reach the saddle between the northern and southern peaks. To reach the peak, climbers typically set up two or three high-altitude camps. From the starting point, one can see much of the path leading to the saddle.

·         False Polish route

  1. The Plaza Argentina camp on the mountain’s eastern flank is the starting point for the FalsePolish route up the peak. It takes three days to get from Punta de Vacas to Plaza Argentina via the Rio de las Vacas valley due to the city’s high altitude (4,200 meters). The glacier climb of the Polish route is avoided by taking the fake Polish way, which connects to the polar course at an altitude of 6,200 meters. The standard method of descending, the so-called Polish traverse, is doable.
  2. In 1935, a Polish team was the first to summit using the Polish route successfully. It follows the mountain’s eastern flank, which features a wall 800 meters high, slopes as steep as 55 degrees, and glacial climbing, and is considered the second most challenging way to reach the peak.

·         Pared Sur

The Pared Sur climbs the mountain’s southern face. At an altitude of 3050 meters, on the mountain’s least sunny side, the north face in the Northern Hemisphere, you can find ice and broken rocks in the Southern Hemisphere. One of the world’s most challenging climbs, it was first accomplished by a French team in 1954 after eight days of effort. You’ll also need extra paperwork to get permission to climb this route.

Camps On Mount Aconcagua

Vacas Valley route camps

  • Base Camp at Plaza Argentina

The Plaza Argentina base camp is a safe and comfortable place to stay. There are communal eating shelters, medical clinics where visitors must get their permits stamped to prove they are physically ready to continue climbing, and a thriving social scene.

  • Camp 1

You may find plenty of tent sites in Camp 1, which is spread over a vast, frequently snowy area. It is a clear path with potentially heavy winds. A water source is available.

  • Camp 2

Camp 2, called Guanacos Camp, is on the other side of the Ameghino Col at an altitude of 5,400 meters. It has running water, and other teams are setting up camp nearby to help.

  • Colera Camp

The highest point, at 5970m, is reached from Colera Camp. However, some Aconcagua expeditions also try to climb from Guanacos Camp, depending on the weather and the group’s strength.

Horcones Route camps

  • Base camp at Plaza del Mulas

At the height of the season, Plaza del Mulas (4600m) transforms into a vast tent city with all kinds of amenities like bars, showers, and souvenir shops.

  • Canada Camp

Located at 5,000 meters, Canada Camp is a rocky outcrop offering a panoramic view of the entire valley.

  • Nido de Condores

There is a park ranger service and ice pools you can break for water at Nido de Condores, located at an altitude of 5,500 meters.