ACONCAGUA 07 TRIP REPORT
January 8, 2007 – Aconcagua Overview
Marshall departed Denver for Argentina in order to arrive a day early, on the morning of January 9, 2007. Here is anoverview of Aconcagua, including some history and general information on what the climbers will be facing on themountain.
Mount Aconcagua (22,841ft) is located entirely in the province of Mendoza, in western Argentina.Aconcagua is one of the highest peaks in the world and the very highest outside the Himalayas in Asia. The first climber to successfully reach the summit was Mathías Zurbriggen of Switzerland. He reached thehighest point on Aconcagua on 14 January 1897, following the northwest trail (Normal Route), which hassince become the most popular path to Aconcagua 's zenith.Over the years, the number of expeditions arriving at Aconcagua Provincial Park, eager to face thechallenge of height, strong winds and extreme temperatures, have increased steadily, making it one of themost popular destinations among mountain climbers the world over. Aconcagua is part of the "sevensummits" circuit.According to some international expert mountaineers that have climbed the Himalayas, the almost 23,000feet of Aconcagua represent an even greater physiological distance. This phenomenon is due to severalfactors. The Himalayas, for instance, have vegetation up to 16,400 feet, while in the Central AndesMountain range the vegetation reaches only to 11,500 to 13,000 feet. The relative ambient humidity isvery low and the atmosphere of the Earth is thinner in this region of the globe. All of this makesAconcagua a terrain appropriate to test and prepare for later expeditions to mountains higher than 8,000meters.Climbers attempting to climb Aconcagua must properly equipped and in excellent physical condition.From the technical point of view, Aconcagua presents all types of difficulties on rock, ice and snow. Andhe who confronts the ascent should have a good climbing technique, excellent physical fitness,considerable experience, and most importantly, a lot of enthusiasm and perseverance.All participants fly into Mendoza, Argentina, which is 690 miles west of Buenos Aires and is at 2,500 feetabove sea level. The best climbing season for Aconcagua is between late November and late February,when the weather is warmer and more stable.Aconcagua generates its own weather. There can be a wide range of temperatures, from warm days (50to 69º F) to freezing nights (-4 to -13º F), depending on the altitude. Large snowfields; strong winds, whichare very common; and major snowstorms, in particular above 13,000 feet, are a possibility. The humidityis extremely low, but humid winds blowing from the Pacific Ocean, 100 miles to the west, generate mostof the bad weather of Aconcagua.
January 9, 2007 - Arrival in Mendoza and the Route
Marshall arrived safely in Mendoza, and greeted several members of the group: Nancy Bristow, LouiseCooper, David Ferris, and Terri Schneider. Frank Fumich and Richard Shear will arrive on January 10th.Unfortunately, due to a recent biking accident that resulted in some broken ribs, Mick Donoff (who was amember of the Kilimanjaro 2006 climb through Stray Dogs Adventure Travel with a Purpose) had to
cancel at the last minute. Marshall was sorry that Mick couldn't be a part of the group, but looks forward tofuture adventures with him.Marshall reported that Nancy, Louise, David, and Terri are all fit and healthy, and ready for the climb!None of them have been above 20,000 feet before, so it will an exciting challenge for all.Here is an overview of the expedition.