Friday, January 30, 2009

Aconcagua End of Season Report


The climbing season on Aconcagua, the highest peak in the world outside of the Himalaya, is winding down, and ExWeb has a solid report on some of the recent happenings on the mountain this year.

As the story notes, Aconcagua is a popular destination in the last few months or first few months of any given year. Many climbers use it as a training climb for the bigger peaks to come later in the spring, such as Everest. While the 6962m (22,841 feet) mountain doesn't offer the same altitude as the Himalaya, it does present a nice opportunity to gauge your physical conditioning and test gear. The fact that it is also one of the Seven Summits increases its attraction to climbers looking to bag all of the peaks on the different continents as well.

The end-of-the-season report indicates that traffic was quite heavy on the mountain this year, with more climbers than usual. Sadly, there were also more fatalities on Aconcagua too, with six people losing their lives, double the average number of deaths in any given year.

On the positive side though, four disabled military personnel from Columbia reached the summit this month, after overcoming a variety of injuries in the past few years. Also, ten year old Matthew Moniz, from the U.S., summitted as well, making him the youngest person to ever do so. Matthew is out to give Jordan Romero a run for his money, as he's also going after the Seven Summits, and now has Kilimanjaro and Elburus on his resume, in addition to Aconcagua.

The report wraps up with some interesting historical information about the ancient Incas going quite high on the mountain, and possibly to the summit.