Argentina, South America
ACONCAGUA EXPEDITION OVERVIEW
The Aconcagua expedition is a small group, high altitude mountaineering expedition in the Andes of South America. Aconcagua, at 6962m, is the highest mountain in the Americas, and the highest mountain outside of Asia.
Aconcagua is one of the peaks on the ‘Seven Summits’ list, which includes the highest mountain on each continent. It is a fantastic high altitude mountain to prepare for a Himalayan expedition.
We climb via the 360 degree route which circumnavigates the mountain starting at the Vacas valley to Plaza Argentinas Base Camp, traversing the mountain and summiting via the Normal Route from Camp Colera. The expedition then heads down the Normal Route to Plaza de Mulas and out via the Horcones Valley. Mules carry our gear in and out of Base Camp but from there we carry our own loads on the mountain.
Aconcagua is located in the heart of the Argentine Central Andes and stands above numerous peaks over 5000m. It is surrounded by a desert landscape due to its location, altitude and harsh weather conditions.
There are however some interesting species of fauna in the national park including herds of guanacos and it is not uncommon to see condors flying overhead.
The services of your expedition leader Allie Pepper including personal advice on gear, preparation and training prior to the expedition commencing
Private transportation Airport - Hotel in Mendoza – Airport
Private transportation Mendoza - Penitentes - Mendoza
Private transportation Penitentes - trailhead - Penitentes
Welcome dinner in Mendoza
2 nights accommodation in Mendoza City on day 1 and 2 of the itinerary, breakfast included
2 nights accommodation in Penitentes on day 3 and 4 of the itinerary, breakfast included
Assistance with the procedures to obtain the permit to enter the provincial Park Aconcagua
Mules to carry loads to Plaza Argentina round trip and from Plaza de Mulas to Penitentes
Full board at Plaza Argentina and Plaza de Mulas Base Camps
Safe storage room in Penitentes and Base Camp
Oxygen for emergencies and radio at BC, 24/7 assistance for evacuations/emergencies
All expedition food ex Penitentes
The use of all group gear such as tents, stoves, first aid kit, pulse oxymeter, radio etc
To apply for a place on the expedition a deposit of US$1000 is required along with the completion of a booking form,
medical questionnaire and an agreement to the terms and conditions.
Once the deposit and forms are received and your place on the expedition has been accepted, you will be given
additional information including the clothing and equipment list and training advice. If your booking is not accepted you
will be refunded your deposit. The balance of the expedition fee is due 90 days prior to the departure date.
Take note it is required that team members have a high fitness level and an ability to carry loads of up to 20kg for 8
hours. Porters can reduce the weights of packs however a high fitness level is needed to achieve success on the summit
day. It is extremely strenuous hiking above 6000m and the team could be going for up to 16 hours continuously during
the summit push.
Please email for the information brochure, booking details and terms and conditions.
WHY CLIMB WITH ALLIE PEPPER?
I am often asked "why should I book with you"? So here are some of my responses to that question that you should consider. You may find cheaper options on the mountain by local operators but you need to check their itineraries as many companies run as many expeditions as they can in a season. Therefore they have shorter itineraries which do not allow for extra days to wait for good summit weather windows. In the 2016/2017 season we had to wait during both expeditions for our summit weather window and many groups around us ran out of time and had to turn back. So if you need to return again because you ran out of days on the mountain, you will not save money. Of course local companies have less costs as they do not need to pay the additional expense of the guide travelling from overseas. Most other companies on the mountain do not limit their group sizes so they run expeditions with 10 or more clients in their team. I have limited my group size to 7 clients with 2 guides and a guiding ratio of 1:4.
Some more advantages of climbing with me:
- I am fluent in Spanish and have lived in Argentina (in Mendoza where we begin the expedition) for 3 years so I have a lot of local knowledge and associations on the mountain.
- I have guided over 10 expeditions on Aconcagua and every expedition that I have led has made the summit.
- Allie Pepper Adventures uses the best and longest running logistics service on the mountain with full Base Camp service. It is also the most expensive but well worth it for the quality of service.
- As I live in Australia you have unlimited access to ask me questions in regards to gear and clothing, training and the expedition in general so you can begin your journey knowing you are the most prepared for it as you can be. This will give you added confidence on the mountain.
- I can help organise training days here in the Blue Mountains where we hike together on the trails that I personally train on. You have the opportunity to ask for my advice face to face during these hikes as well as meet and get to know other team members.
- I have included two nights at Penitentes at the start of the expedition and most other companies only spend one night there. We do an acclimatisation hike to 3200m on our extra day there as I believe this greatly aids in our acclimatisation prior to hiking into Base Camp.
- I have guided many routes on the mountain and now only guide this route as I believe it is the most scenic journey as well as the route with the highest chance of summit success for you.
2019 Expedition Dates
20th Jan- 12th Feb 2019
Expedition is full
Waitlist places available
Max:7 team members
24 days ex Mendoza. Allie Pepper Adventures has created the best itinerary for acclimatisation with 2 nights in Penitentes and spare days on the mountain to wait for a summit weather window. Please email for a full brochure with a detailed itinerary included.
"I found the preparation and communication with Allie friendly yet professional. My questions or concerns were answered with efficiency and care. The knowledge, experience, equipment and professional contacts Allie has and utilises make a great experience for the whole team.
The overall trip to Argentina and Aconcagua was an amazing experience this was heightened by having Allie as a leader. I believe Allie is a motivating and inspiring expedition leader and a vessel of mountaineering knowledge.
I would fully recommend Allie to guide an expedition; it is fun, rewarding and a lifetime experience all packaged together by a genuine person."
"I cannot speak highly enough of having Allie Pepper as my guide for Aconcagua, she is so much more than a mountain guide. Her knowledge, experience and care factor for our well-being ensured our group had a safe and successful summit. Every day was a learning experience, from pitching a tent in the wind to melting ice to walking in crampons. I came away from this trip feeling inspired and empowered.
The Andes are amazing, no matter where you are on the mountain, they take your breath away. This was truly a memorable adventure."
"Thank you for guiding our small group to the summit of Mt Aconcagua in February 2017 – it was a truly great experience.
Your pre-trek training program ensured we were fit, strong and prepared for the challenge. Your advice on gear was invaluable. The itinerary/route you chose ensured that we were properly acclimatised and able to make it to the summit and back safely. Throw in the your local knowledge, fluent Spanish and good sense of humour and it made for an enjoyable trek all round!
At all times I had confidence in your ability to keep us safe on the mountain and over the trek I gained a strong appreciation for your guiding and mountaineering abilities. Despite the physical challenge of carrying our own gear I was glad to be in your group and not in one of the larger groups being shuttled up and down the mountain, porters in tow.
You provided a very personalised trekking experience and I could see the effort you put in each day to make sure we were healthy, safe and happy. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend you and your Aconcagua expedition to others."