January 13 Aconcagua Team – Alex Calls From Plaza Argentina

Alex Hall gave a ring from Plaza Argentina after the team carried loads up to Camp 1, almost 1000m above.

Today was a long one for the climbers.  They spent almost nine hours above Base Camp, while they cached supplies at an elevation of 16,400′ before returning to Plaza Argentina for the night.  This system of moving supplies higher on the mountain and returning to sleep at a lower elevation is called “double carrying.”  It enables climbers to move the requisite food, fuel and equipment up the mountain without overloading their packs, but even more importantly, it helps climbers ease into each new altitude by getting a taste of it prior to committing to a new elevation.  Climbing high and sleeping low is very effective in aiding acclimatization.

Altitude effects everyone differently.  By setting a very conservative rate of ascent, our teams have a good probability of enabling each climber to acclimate well.  The crew took a rest and acclimatization day at Plaza Argentina after they first arrived and they are taking a second such day tomorrow.  Most teams do not spend two full acclimatization days at Plaza Argentina, but we have found the second day very valuable over the years, so we plan on it.  Hopefully, all the climbers will benefit from it, recharge their batteries, and continue to acclimatize in preparation for moving up the mountain in earnest on the 21st.

Due to the challenges of communicating via satellite phone from deep amidst tall mountains, Alex’s call was a bit garbled and ultimately dropped before he could fully express himself, but with no further adieu, here’s Alex!

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2 Comments
  1. Martin Allan Hall

    Great stuff Alex! It sounds and looks really worth it. We are meeting Tash on Tuesday (today is Sunday), with Rich, Cami and Rafi. We shall drink your health. All that and a Blades win too. xx Dada

  2. Elizabeth

    We are following your adventure with great interest on a daily basis and it is good to hear your voice today. A treat.

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