Mendoza – Los Penitentes (3 h drive – 2.580 m / 8,465 ft)
Pick up at the airport if needed (optional). The guide will check your gear and assist you with the park’s trekking permit procedures. Transfer in private vehicles from Mendoza to Los Penitentes, where the group will spend the night in a lodge. In this small mountain village we have our warehouse, where you can get an insider’s view of the logistics involved in an expedition up Aconcagua.
Los Penitentes – Confluencia camp (3 h hike – 3.390 m / 11,300 ft)
After breakfast, we ride the van for a few minutes to the Horcones Valley (2.950 m/9,678 ft) where we get our climbing permits stamped at the park rangers checkpoint, and begin the approach to base camp. After a relaxed hike, we arrive at our first camp, Confluencia (3.390 m / 11,300 ft). For the entire hike to base camp, all you will need to carry is a day pack with some essentials; the mules will carry the rest.
Confluencia – South Face viewpoint – Confluencia (6/7 h hike – 4.050 m / 13,287 ft)
We take a detour to admire the imposing South Face of Mt. Aconcagua. After a seven-hour hike on the Lower Horcones glacier, we spend the night in Confluencia.
Confluencia – Plaza de Mulas (7/9 h hike – 4.350 m / 14,500 ft)
After a demanding hike up the Horcones valley, we arrive at our well equipped base camp, under the imposing West Face of Mt. Aconcagua.
Rest day in Plaza de Mulas. Sleep, explore the “city of tents”, or try the yoga mats in our heated dome tent.
Cerro Bonete trek (5.004 m / 16,417 ft)
First foray up to high altitude: the non-technical hike to the neighboring Cerro Bonete offers an awesome view of the West Face of Aconcagua, and the opportunity to summit a 5.000 m peak. / 5-6 hs.
Plaza de Mulas – Horcones – Mendoza (6-7 h hike + 3 h transfer)
After a last breakfast with the lead guide and the climbers that will go on with the full expedition, we retrace our steps down the Horcones valley. Our vehicle will be waiting at the trailhead (with cold sodas or even a beer) to drive you back to Mendoza, where our program ends.
End your trip in style by flying out of base camp in a private helicopter instead of walking. Seeing the Andes from the Condor’s point of view is a whole different experience! Early in the morning, our BC Manager will coordinate the helicopter flight (weather permitting). After enjoying one of the world’s most scenic transfers, the helicopter will land in Horcones. A more humble land vehicle (at least it will have cold soda or beer) will drive you to Mendoza, where our program ends.