MEET THE JANUARY 13th ACONCAGUA TEAM!
Our final Aconcagua team of the season will be hitting the mountain in a few short days! They met for the first time in Mendoza yesterday to make the final preparations on their climbing kit and make a plan to head into the ski town of Penitentes, where their expedition will officially begin!
Truly the “Roof of the Americas,” Cerro Aconcagua, at 22,841 ft. (6,962 meters) is not only the highest mountain in South America, but also the highest peak outside of Asia, and in the Western and Southern hemispheres. The name Aconcagua is most likely a derivative of the Incan words Akon Cahuak, meaning “Stone Sentinel.” From its summit, climbers can see all the way down to the Pacific Ocean. Located on the Chilean – Argentine border, it is easily accessed through the Argentine city of Mendoza, where the team of climbers and guides will be traveling from today.
The team will climb a variation of the classic route known as the Polish Traverse, which approaches the peak from the southeast through the arid Vacas Valley, ascends the east side and drops down the the west after summit day. The climbing is not particularly technical, but the high altitude and the notoriously windy weather can make the route very challenging.
Let’s meet the team!
Robin Oldenstam and Johan Bogren, who have traveled from Sweden.
Bruce Miskulin, from Fort Collins, CO.
Masako Oya, from New York, NY.
Andy Baatz, joining us from Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Nick Sayeedi, from Castle Rock, CO.
Kyle Kelbert, from Moose Jaw, Canada
Alex Hall, of New York, NY.
Our guide team will be led by guide Fermin Avila, from El Bolson, Argentina and a 20-year veteran of Aconcagua who has led dozens of trips for Mountain Trip, and guide Jason Denley who is based in Colorado/Alaska, who guides for our local program based in Telluride, Colorado, and on Denali in Alaska. This will be his second trip on the mountain, with one successful summit already this season. They will also have the assistance of porters and arrieos on the lower mountain.
We will attempt to post daily updates while the team is on the mountain, but please understand that due to the complexities of communicating from such isolated terrain this is not always possible. Feel free to contact our office for the latest news, but if a day or so passes without an update, hold onto the age-old axiom of, “No News is Good News,” because less than good news always finds a way to get communicated. We will also post photos live from the team as we receive them.
Please post comments to support your friends and family members. We cannot always convey those comments to climbers on the mountain, but they will really enjoy reading them once they are back down in “civilization.” We wish them the best of luck as they endeavor to