Many mountaineers from all over the world set their sights on conquering Aconcagua. Every year, hundreds of mountaineers travel to the tip of Argentina in search of the continent’s highest peak.
When preparing for an ascent of Aconcagua, what should one remember?
Thousands of people try Aconcagua Expeditions each year, but only a handful ever make it. It was due to a lack of preparation and organization, which are crucial to the success of any journey. If you want to get the most out of your hike, here are a few things to keep in mind before you set out for the Aconcagua Ascension.
- Prepare well
The total Acomara Aconcagua Expedition takes about 20 days, so preparation is vital. Making fitness a top priority: Leg endurance, in particular, is critical to a successful trek in Aconcagua. Continuous training for four to six months before the trip is recommended. Stamina can be increased by jogging or cycling, and one can hone speed and muscle by lifting weights. Also, you’ll probably be carrying a pack for at least some of the hike, so you should be used to the extra weight.
Most standard travel routes are simple walks. Therefore, minimal technical preparation is needed. Climbing the more obscure routes requires familiarity with equipment like crampons and harnesses. Once again, the most incredible difficulty climbers encounter is high altitude. Therefore, it is essential to incorporate multiple acclimatization days into your climbing plan to ensure that you are physically and mentally prepared for the next phase of your expedition.
Drinking adequate water is crucial in the dry Aconcagua desert. In the morning or before breakfast, drink one liter of water. Two liters at lunch and one to two in the evening are recommended. Dripping water into a water bladder system is excellent. You’ll pee out any moisture you force down, so don’t bother. Bring extra water packs, vitamin and mineral supplements, and minerals.
- Know routes
Some of the most popular routes up Aconcagua are also the easiest. Then some routes see fewer climbers because they are too complex for amateurs to do safely. The “Regular Route” and the “Aconcagua Polish Route” are the two most traveled paths, with the former considered the simple option.
To reach the peak by the “Normal Route,” hikers must ascend the northwest ridge for several hours. It typically takes roughly 18 days to complete the trek, which begins in the Lesser Horcones Valley and ascends 14,980 feet (4,260 meters) to Plaza de Mulas. There are three separate campgrounds along the trail, and the peak is littered with large rocks and other debris that might kick off dust storms in high winds.
- Pick wise travel dates
October through February are the best months to climb Aconcagua. If the first expedition doesn’t work out, schedule more. Cold, stormy weather is always a possibility. From December through January, up to a thousand people can climb Aconcagua at once. Avoid going up while it’s crowded. Large crowds can sour the mood. It’s best to travel off-peak.
There’s more to climbing excursions than just reaching the summit—forging bonds with your teammates, the natural world, the mountain, and the locals. It’s not only about the external excitement but the excitement you feel deep in your soul. Your Expédition Aconcagua will be one of the most memorable of your life if you take the time to properly prepare for it using the advice provided here.