Aconcagua by the Normal Route

The Aconcagua ascent is the best occasion to live your first experience in High Altitude. 


From the base camp, technical difficulties are minimal, but the altitude is omnipresent with its wind and cold. After a three-days training trek which will allow us to admire the South face of Aconcagua, we will reach the base camp and start acclimatizing whilst climbing the Cerro Bonete (5004m). We continue on the Aconcagua Normal Route... This trip is offered in collaboration with Kandoo Adventures and our local partner in order to propose to you a large choice of guaranteed departure dates. You might do this trip with travellers from these agencies in your group. 

Itinerary

  • Day 1 Mendoza

    We fly to Mendoza and hop on a transfer ride to our hotel. We settle and spend the afternoon to prepare for the expedition.

    Accommodation : Hotel

  • Day 2 Mendoza-Penitentes

    We start our day by a private transfer from Mendoza to Penitentes. We spend the night at the hotel near Puente del Inca and start to immerse ourselves to the expedition's ambiance.
    Old health resort, Puente Del Inca (2900m) is currently a garrison location just before the Chilean border, and transforms into a small skiing area in winter, very busy with Mendoza's citizens.

    Accommodation : Hotel in Penitentes

  • Day 3 Penitentes-Confluencia

    Penitentes-Confluencia Before leaving the hotel, we divise our equipment into two loads : one for high altitude and the other one to stay with us until Confluencia. The high altitude equipment (crampons, ice axe and high mountain boots) is transported by mules until we reach the base camp.
    From Los Penintentes, short transfer to the valley of Horcones (2950m). We start walking along the Horcones river. After a few hours, we discover the impressive Southside of Aconcagua. In Confluencia (3350m), we will settle our camp.

    Positive difference in altitude : around 500m | Negative difference in altitude : around 50m | Accommodation : Base camp

  • Day 4 Confluencia - Plaza Francia - Confluencia

    Today's goal is to acclimatize. We climb up to Plazia Francia (4050m) with a view on the impressive South face of Aconcagua before coming back to Confluencia to spend the night (3400m).

    Positive difference in altitude : around 1150m | Negative difference in altitude : around 250m | Altitude Max : 4250m | Accommodation : base camp

  • Day 5 Confluencia - Plaza De Mulas

    Confluencia - Plaza De Mulas We start walking in direction of the Plaza de Mulas base camp at 4350m.
    We climb up the desert valley of Playa Antia, large alluvial land of 15km long giving access to the first slopes of the North side. After getting passed the Piedra Ibanez rock (3800m), a pretty steep ascent will lead us to Plaza Del Mulas : our base camp.

    Altitude Max : 4250m | Accommodation : base camp

  • Day 6 Rest and acclimatization day

    Today is an acclimatization day and the opportunity to have some rest after the efforts from the previous days. Showers are available and it is possible to phone from the base camp.

  • Day 7 Cerro Bonete ascent (5004m)

    Second day acclimatizing. From Plaza de Mulas, we leave for the Cerro Bonete ascent (5004m). This summit without technical difficulties overcomes the base camp and allows us to have an excellent acclimatization. Very nice view on the Normal Route of Aconcagua and on the Cordillère. After this peak, we understand how much effort we will need to climb up Aconcagua !

    Positive difference in altitude : 850m | Negative difference in altitude : 850m | Accommodation : base camp

  • Day 8 Portage to Plaza Canada camp (5050m)

    Portage to Plaza Canada camp (5050m) Portage of our belongings (equipment and food) to the camp 1, Plaza Canada camp. We return to the Plaza de Mulas base camp in the afternoon.

    Positive difference in altitude : 1100m | Negative difference in altitude : 1100m | Altitude Max : 5350m | Accommodation : base camp

  • Day 9 Plaza de Mulas

    Acclimatization and rest day. These relaxing days are essential to achieve a good acclimatization. Some patience is necessary to finally experience the victory of ascending the highest summits... It is also our last day to finalize our equipment check and prepare for the ascent.

    Accommodation : base camp

  • Day 10 Plaza de Mulas - Plaza Canada

    Plaza de Mulas - Plaza Canada We climb up to camp 1 where we left our belongings a few days before. It is our first night in high altitude.

    Accommodation : camp 1

  • Day 11 Plaza Canada - Plaza Nido Del Condor

    Plaza Canada - Plaza Nido Del Condor With our carriers' help to carry the tents, we draw ourselves up to the Nido del Condores camp (5400m) to settle camp 2. From there, we can finally see Aconcagua and the Canaleta passage.

    Positive difference in altitude : 1100m | Altitude Max : 5400m | Accommodation : camp 2

  • Day 12 Nido Del Condor-Colera (Camp 3 at 5970m)

    Nido Del Condor-Colera (Camp 3 at 5970m) Settlement in camp 3 at 5970m high : it is our final camp before ascending the summit !
    Magnificent view on the Andean peaks.

    Positive difference in altitude : 600m | Altitude Max : 5950m | Accommodation : camp 3

  • Day 13 Aconcagua ascent

    Aconcagua ascent Early morning departure. We have to join Piedras Blancas (6000m) and then to get on the pathway leading to the Independencia ruins (6400m). The terrain might be covered with snow or even with ice. After the Cresta Del Viento, the path crosses the Gran Acarreo to the feet of the famous Canaleta, a rocky corridor leading to the summit. A good knowledge of the itinerary will help us overcome this passage which can be a little arduous.
    After a crossing under the peak ridge, we finally reach the summit which is just like a large rocky table. There is a bird's eye view on the South side and on the Plaza Francia base camp, offering us a magnificent panorama on the Cordillère des Andes. After celebrating and capturing this incredible moment, we descend to camp 2 or 3, depending on the group's physical condition. We'll rest our weary feet and have a well-deserved night !

    Positive difference in altitude : 1100m | Negative difference in altitude : 1100m to 1600m | Altitude Max : 6956m | Accommodation : Camp 2 or 3

  • Days 14 to 15 Spare day

    Spare day If weather conditions aren't favorable, the summit's ascent can be done during this spare day. It also can be used as a rest day in Nido de Condores or to settle an intermediary camp to camp Canada (5000m). The knowledge and experience of our guide will optimize the profile of our ascent according to the weather and to the group's physical conditions.

  • Day 16 Colera - Plaza de Mulas

    Today we get back to Plaza Del Mulas (base camp). This day can also be used as an additional ascent day.

    Accommodation : base camp

  • Day 17 Plaza De Mulas - Penitentes

    Today is a long return step to the valley of Rio Horcones.

    Negative difference in altitude : 1500m | Accommodation : Hotel

  • Day 18 Mendoza

    Transfer to Mendoza to go to the airport. We'll hop on our flight back home and say goodbye to each other after such an incredible adventure !

ITINERARY CHANGE

The program can be modified by your guide due to weather conditions or participants physical conditions. For safety reasons and to ensure a uniform level corresponding to the one announced, the supervision and organisation boards have the right to interrupt your participation if your technical or physical level are lower than the one required. The interruption will not give you any right of refund or payment of compensation.

Dates & prices

International departures:

No departure for now

Trip code: EAVN

Included

The 30% deposit has to be paid when registering. The remaining balance will be paid 30 days before departure. 
  • The technical organisation of the trip
  • A high mountain guide's supervision
  • Full-board except on lunched in Mendoza
  • The collective technical equipment (ropes, ice axes)
  • Ground transfers necessary to the program as described in the itinerary
  • The camping and cooking equipment 
  • 3 hotel nights, 2 nights in Mendoza and 1 night in Penitentes
  • Mules : transport of your bagages and collective equipment to Plaza de Mulas
  • The assistance of a local team (cooks)
  • The entry tax for the Aconcagua national parc
  • The altitude carriers for the collective equipment (tents...)
  • Hyperbaric chamber (present at the base camp but isn't carried up to the altitude camps)
  • The safety collective equipment

Not included

  • International flights to Mendoza
  • Additional nights and meals in Mendoza if you decide to modify your program or to return sooner after the ascent
  • The individual technical equipment
  • Tips
  • Insurance/assistance
  • Drinks and personal expenses
  • Registration fees ( 18€)

Notes

To be paid on the spot : 
  • Drinks and personal expenses
  • Meals in Mendoza
  • Additional nights and meals in Mendoza if you change your program

International flights

If you wish, we can take care of booking your international flights to the closest airport of your destination. 

Terms and conditions

Subscription

Subscribe to one of our activities or travels means accepting general sales conditions. Each client must fill a subscription form, which will be accepted only after the payment of a deposit accounting for 30% of the travel’s price and according to the availability. If you subscribe less than 30 days before the trip, you must pay the whole price during the subscription. You can pay by bank transfer (SWIFT/IBAN) or with your credit card directly through our website (available soon). A booking confirmation will be sent to you be e-mail very soon. 

Invoice procedure

Once your booking is registered, we will send you an email containing the invoice. Full payment is required at least 30 days before your arrival. If the customer does not settle the payment of the travel price within the period agreed upon, Montagne Expedition has the right to cancel the booking free of charge. 

Cancellation policy

If for any reason, you decide to withdraw from a journey, the amount already paid will be refunded subject to the following exceptions:
  • More than 30 days before departure, you will be charged for the amount of 50€
  • From 30 to 21 days before departure, you will be charged for the amount of the deposit (30% of the trip’s price)
  • From 20 to 14 days before departure,  you will be charged for 50% of the trip’s price
  • From 13 to 7 days before departure,  you will be charged for 75% of the trip’s priceLess than 7 days before departure,  you will be charged for the whole trip’s price 

Particular case :

Whatever the cancellation or contract change date, the following fees will be added to the charges above:
  • Airline fixed costs: plane tickets are bought in advance to avoid too high airline prices, however they are non refundable in case of cancellation or plan changes. In that case, the charges above apply to the price of your trip without the plane ticket’s price
  • Ground fixed costs: you will be charged for the fees that were paid early
  • Insurance fees: Insurance fees will not be refunded if you have subscribed to a multi-risk or cancellation insurance. The specific conditions will be written on your subscription confirmationIf you have no choice but to cancel your trip before departure, you must inform Montagne Expeditions and your insurance provider with a written statement as soon as possible, you will get a receipt. 

The receipt date will be taken as the cancellation date to charge cancellation fees.  

If Montagne Expeditions has no choice but to cancel a group travel due to an insufficient number of participants, the decision will be taken and the clients informed at least 31 days before departure. Altaï Alpes can also cancel a departure due to exceptional events threatening participants safety (social events, strikes, weather conditions). In that case, the trip’s price will be fully refunded but the participants will not get any compensation.

Changes to travel contract


If any change in travel contract is made at the customer’s request, the customer shall pay any fee that might arise from this change. In any case, every request for changes shall be notified in writing. In case of external events that could not be foreseen, Altaï Alpes might change some aspects of the travel contract. We will inform you of any changes as quickly as possible.

Pricing


All group travel prices on our website have been calculated for the indicated number of participants for each trip. The price list is confirmed after the booking. If the number of participants is lower than expected, an additional payment charge might be applied. For each travel and program, we mention the price per person – valid for the minimum number of participants – and we provide you with detailed explanations about the services included or not. Any change in the exchange rates or in the price of travel services in particular regarding the cost of the fuel, might entail price revision.

Contract transfer

In case of contract transfer by the customer to an assignee, modification and cancellation conditions apply. 

Insurance

We recommend you to get your personal insurance before your departure to cover the activities undertaken by Montagne Expedition. If you have not purchased any of our insurances, we ask you to email us your insurance contract information (company, contract name, contract number, phone number) and bring those information with you on your trip. 

Practical info

Staff

The tour is supervised by a mountain guide who has been chosen for his field experience, his specific knowledge of one geographical area and the culture attached, as well as his passion for the region.

Food

Meals 
  • Picnics for lunch
  • Breakfast and diner prepared by the local team up to Plaza de Mulas when ascending and from Plaza de Mulas when returning
  • During the ascent : meals are prepares by the guide and the participants on the altitude hobs
  • Plan to bring snacks according to your own taste
CAUTION : dried fruits, meats and cheese are forbidden at the customs and subject to penalties

Drinks
  • Drinks and personal expenses are not included in the trip

Accommodation

  • Mendoza : twin rooms in hotel
  • Penitentes : twin rooms in hotel
  • Base camp : 2 person tents
  • Meals and collective life : collective tents 
  • Altitude camps : 2 person tents

Transportation

During the trek, the carrying of our luggage is assured by our carrying team from Penitentes to Plaza de Mulas and when returning from Plaza de Mulas to Penitentes. 
It is important to have only one bag to be carried. After the base camp, every one of us will have to carry its belongings. Between camps, the carrying can be a little tedious, but it allows us to acclimatize progressively. Carriers insure the collective equipment's transport up to the altiude base camps. 

Tips

Clients usually pay for the guides’ drinks : you might find it practical to make a group kitty at the beginning of your stay (no obligation). 

Supplied equipment

  • Ropes
  • Technical equipment

Vital equipment

  • 1 pair of alpinism boots 
  • 1 pair of gaiters
  • 1 harness + 2 carabiners
  • 1 ice axe
  • 1 pair of crampons with antibott system
  • 1 pair of telescopic poles
  • 1 sleeping bag (double layers)
  • 1 foam mattress or self inflating
  • 1 safety cover
  • 1 head lamp + long lasting batteries
  • 1 pair of glacier sunglasses category 4 with nose protector + 1 extra pair
  • 1 ski mask for the summit
  • 1 1.5L thermos
  • Hand heaters
  • Sun cream + after sun cream (face and lips)
  • 2 plastic bin bags (100L) to keep your bags waterproof
  • 1 waterproof pouch in which you will put your identity papers, your phone, your money and your insurance/assistance contract with all of your emergency phone number

Material

Upper body : 
  • Windstopper bonnet
  • Hat or cap
  • Neck scarf
  • Sunscreen (high protection) for skin and lips
  • Sunglasses for glacier category 4 + ski goggles 
  • 2 technical breathable long sleeve underwear type "Carline" (no coton which dries too slowly)
  • 1 technical and breathable shirt to put under your jumper
  • 1 thick fleece jacket
  • 1 fuzz jacket
  • 1 wind stopper and waterproof jacket type Goretex
  • 1 pair of wind stopper mittens (fleece or wool) 
  • 1 pair of undergloves

Lower body : 
  • 1 technical and breathable pair of tights type "Carline"
  • 1 pair of comfortable mountain trousers
  • 1 pair of wind stopper and waterproof trousers type Goretex
  • 2 pairs of socks : 1 thin and 1 thick

Other : 
  • 1 bed sheet for refuges
  • 1 small toiletry bag with 1 fast drying towel
  • Cream for sunburns (Biafine)
  • Biodegradable toilet paper
  • 1 or 2 100L plastic bags and an overbag to protect your belongings and your bag
  • 1 waterproof pouch in which you will put your identity paper, your phone, your money and your insurance/assistance contract with all of your emergency numbers

Luggage

Your equipment has to be split into 2 bags : 
  • 1 heavy and compact bag (50/60L backpack) with the minimum necessary for your arrival : leave with your alpinism boots at your feet
  • 1 other backpack (under 20kg)

Medicine

Your guide has a pharmacy of first urgency.
Plan with your doctor your personal pharmacy:
  • Personal medicine
  • Pain reliever (preferably paracetamol)
  • Double skin
  • Elastoplast
  • Local disinfectant
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antispasmodic
  • Anti-diarrheal
  • Anti-vomiting
  • Intestinal antiseptic
  • Eyewash
  • Light sleeping pills
  • Earplugs
  • Broad spectrum antibiotic
  • Vitamins C 
Non-exhaustive list.

Passport

Please make sure your passport and travel documents are valid. We advise you to travel with a copy of your travel documents in case of theft or loss.

Visa

Please check with the embassy or consulate of your residential country, it depends on your nationality. 
French citizens do not need a visa to go to Argentina and Chile.

Mandatory vaccines

Even if there are no mandatory vaccins, make sure to have the vaccins usually recommended in the occidental countries up to date (tetanus, diphtheria, polio, typhoid). Also, hepatitis A and B are recommended. 

Weather

Argentina is in the South hemisphere. In January and February, it's summer time. Thus, days are long and bright. 

The North of Chile is one of the most arid areas of the world. The central zone has a tempered climate, dry, mediterranean like. It rains 30 days per year in Santiago. The more you go South, the more rainfalls are abundant. 

The great lakes region (Osorno, Puerto, Chiloé...) and Patagonia experienced records of rainfalls in autumn and winter. 

In the Land of Fire, the violent wind often reaches 140km/h, and the nights are fresh. The most favorable time is thus from the end of December to mid-June.

Sustainable tourism

We do our best to offer trips subscribed to the principles of responsible and sustainable tourism. Our aim is to allow visitors to discover the many facets of the mountains by taking you off the beaten path and getting you in touch with its nature and residents, while ensuring that your visits do not have a negative effect on its natural environment and people.

  • Most of our accommodations are run by locals, thus ensuring that the largest part of the revenue generated through your trip will stay within the region.
  • France is known for its exquisite cuisine. The art of cooking and the joy of eating are part of everyday life. Each region has its particular foods and flavors which we would like you to explore and appreciate.
  • Water is a precious and rare good. Our team and those travelling with us are thus advised to use it with consideration and avoid excessive water use where possible.
  • Please try to recycle your waste whenever possible, even though recycling may not be a well-known concept in all areas.
  • Be cautious and respectful when hiking. Make sure to wear suitable footwear and avoid picking flowers, moving stones or lighting fires.  
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Marjolaine

My local agent
Marjolaine

  • At 12, she dreams of climbing Kilimanjaro.
  • Attracted by volcanoes and snow-capped peaks from all continents
  • She loves hikes and ski weekends
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Region
Great ascent
Activity
Expedition Summer
Duration
18 days
Group
3 to 12 people
Code
EAVN
Price
From €5,495
Level
4/5
Comfort
3/5
Language(s)
English

Strengths

  • The ascent of the highest summit of America 
  • The Cerro Bonete (5004m) as an acclimatization summit
  • Aconcagua, a quite technical "expedition"

Guide's advice

"Aconcagua is an accessible mountain on the technical point but also a true initiation to the universe of high altitude. This ascent is also an incredible experience of expedition with its altitude camps and its acclimatization which requires patience and perseverance."

Required level

To do this expedition, you have to have an excellent physical condition ! 

This ascent requires portage to instal the altitude camps. This summit isn't hard technically but requires an experience in using crampons. 
The principal difficulties come from the altitude, the cold and the wind. 

For all of our "Trek Peak" trips with ascents and exposure to altitude, we ask every participant to do a medical check and to have an aptitude certificate to the practice of alpinism. 
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