Aconcagua - Altitude 6,959m/22,830ft - Duration 25 Days - Grade 1C

Of the Seven Summits, Aconcagua is the second highest and one of the most technically straightforward to climb. It is generally regarded to be the highest trekking peak in the world and can be climbed by fit hikers without roped climbing experience. However, even the normal Horcones route is a very arduous ascent due to the scale of the mountain, its considerable altitude and the unpredictable weather.

Aconcagua is an enormously high mountain and the longer you spend acclimatising, the better your chances of reaching the summit. If you do need to sit out bad weather in the top camp on Aconcagua, it is easier to do so having arrived feeling strong from being better acclimatised. Summit day typically takes 10 hours from Berlin Huts (5,800m), with the Canaleta, a large gully leading to the summit ridge, being the most strenuous part of the climb. The views from the top are breathtaking and make all the hard work worthwhile.

Sponsors

The whole expedition will cost £100,000 so we plan to match this cost and raise £100,000 for Cancer Research.

With charities it is not only the fundraising that is important! Raising awareness, heightening charity profile and commitment from corporate sponsors and individuals is another vital piece in the charity jigsaw puzzle.

It is safe to say that everyone in their life will have been touched by cancer in some way, therefore support to Cancer Research is imperative.

Firstly donating to Just Giving will make a difference but costs of the expedition are also required.

We need sponsors to cover the cost of the expedition so most of our time can be spent fund-raising for the charity.

A maximum of 2 sponsors will be required for each mountain as this will enable us to focus all our advertising and Media exposure to include both these sponsors.

Sponsors will also be on our new website and all printed advertising regarding our Expedition. On top of this website addresses and logos will be sewn into garments worn on the climb, and most importantly your company logo and name will be captured with Steven at the summit of the mountain..

For more information on becoming a sponsor please contact

steven@8summits.co.uk

The Mountain

Mt. Aconcagua, at 22,830ft (6,962m) is the highest point in the Western and Southern hemisphere, towering above the surrounding peaks in the Argentine Andes. The mountain stands on the border with Chile, some 30 km (a day-and-a-half hike) from the Puente del Inca settlement.

Aconcagua lies in the Frontal Range, slightly to the east of the main Andean chain. It has a very steep and massive face on its south and a gentle slope on the north, with a huge glacier, the Polish glacier, flowing to the east and a series of aretes and couloirs to the west.

The mountain has two summits - North (6,959m) and South (6,930m), joined by a ridge (Cresta del Guanaco) approximately one kilometre long. Various ridges radiate from each summit and the whole massif is isolated from other high peaks; only to the northwest is it connected by a high snow ridge with the surrounding mountain systems.

The usual approach is from the south up the Quebrada de los Horcones, which circles the western flanks of the peak, to the Plaza de Mulas base camp at a height of 4,365 metres. From here, 3 routes start: the normal via the Horcones Glacier Superior and north ridge, the West Buttress route, and the South-West route. The best climbing period is mid-November to March. On the normal route, refuges exist at heights of 5,933 metres and 6,377 metres.

Climbing

In mountaineering terms, Aconcagua is technically an easy mountain if approached from the north, via the normal route. Although the effects of altitude are severe (atmospheric pressure is 40% of sea-level at the summit), the use of supplemental oxygen is not required.

Altitude sickness will affect most climbers to some extent, depending on the degree of acclimatization. The second most frequented route is the Polish Glacier Traverse route, also known as the "Falso de los Polacos" route. This approaches the mountain through the Vacas valley, ascends to the base of the Polish Glacier, then traverses across to the normal route for the final ascent to the summit.

The third most popular route is the Polish Glacier itself. The routes to the peak from the south and south-west ridges are more demanding and the south face climb is considered very difficult. Before attempting the mountain climbers need to purchase a permit from the Aconcagua Provincial Park authority in Mendoza. Prices vary depending on the season. The camp sites on the normal route are listed below (altitudes are approximate). Normal route to the summitPuente del Inca, 2,740m (8,990ft): A small village on the main road, with facilities including a lodge.

Confluencia, 3,380m (11,090ft): A camp site a few hours into the national park. Plaza de Mulas, 4,370m (14,340ft): Base camp, claimed to be the second largest in the world (after Everest). There are several meal tents, showers and internet access. There is a lodge approx. 1 km from the main campsite across the glacier. Camp Canada, 5,050 metres (16,570 ft): A large ledge overlooking Plaza de Mulas. Camp Alaska, 5,200 metres (17,060 ft): Called 'change of slope' in Spanish, a small site as the slope from Plaza de Mulas to Nido de Condores lessens. Not commonly used. Nido de Condores, 5,570 metres (18,270 ft): A large plateau with beautiful views. There is usually a park ranger camped here. Camp Berlin, 5,940 metres (19,490 ft): The classic high camp, offering reasonable wind protection.

Camp Colera, 5,980 metres (19,620 ft): A larger while slightly more exposed camp situated directly at the north ridge near Camp Berlin, with growing popularity. Several sites possible for camping or bivouac, including Piedras Blancas (~6100m) and Independencia (~6350m), exist above Colera, however seldom used and offering little protection. Summit attempts are usually made from a high camp at either Berlin or Colera, or from the lower camp at Nido de Condores.

Photo Galleries

*Galleries are still under construction*

Sponsors List

Sponsors for Kilimanjaro and Mont Blanc.

Infinity Maintenance Ltd. MediaCorp Online.

Equipment Sponsors

Cotswold Outdoor.