Do you know any interesting facts about Aconcagua? At 22,841 feet / 6961 meters, Aconcagua is the highest mountain in South America and also the highest mountain in the Western Hemisphere. Aconcagua is located in the Andes mountain range in the Aconcagua Provincial Park in Mendoza, Argentina. As you can imagine, such a massive mountain is instantly appealing to mountain enthusiasts from around the globe.
Let’s take a look at some interesting facts about Aconcagua:
- Elevation: 22,841 feet / 6961 meters
- Prominence: 22,841 feet / 6961 meters – The 2nd most prominent mountain in the world
- Isolation: 10,264 miles / 16,518 kilometers
- Aconcagua is the 2nd highest of the Seven Summits.
- Aconcagua is located entirely in Argentina. It is not located on the Chile/Argentina border.
- Aconcagua is not a volcano. It formed by subduction of the Nazca Plate under the South American Plate.
- The origin of the name Aconcagua is unknown. The best theories include the:
- Mapuche word Aconca-Hue meaning “comes from the other side”
- Quechuan word Ackon Cahuack meaning “stone Sentinel”
- Quechuan Phrase Acncho Cahuac meaning “white sentinel”
- Aymara Janq’u Q’awa meaning “white Ravine”
- Aconcagua was featured in a 1942 Disney cartoon called Pedro where Pedro the mail plane almost crashes into the mountain.
- The world’s highest art gallery called Nautilus features the art of Argentine Painter Miguel Doura at 4300 meters on Aconcagua.
- The largest glacier on Aconcagua is the Ventisquero Horcones Inferior. It runs 10 kilometers down the south face.
- Skeletal remains of a guanaco, a wild species of the Camelid family, was found on Aconcagua’s summit ridge.
- Prime climbing season lasts from mid-November to March.
- The mountain sees about 3500 climbers per year.
- Those climbers see about a 60% success rate.
- Most people take 21 days to reach the summit.
- Climbing permits are issued in person in Mendoza.
- The climbers are roughly 75% foreign and 25% Argentinian.
- About 54% take the normal route, 43% climb the Polish Glacier Route, and 3% attempt other routes.
- The Normal Route is the most popular and is a non-technical ascent/climb.
- Over 140 people have died on Aconcagaua.
- The only skiable route on Aconcagua is the Polish Glacier. It is unclear who made the 1st ski descent.
Now let’s take a look at significant moments in Aconcagua’s history:
- 1897 – Swiss Guide Matthias Zubringen makes the 1st recorded ascent on January 14. He was part of an expedition arranged by Edward Fitzgerald. Several days later, Nicholas Lanti and Stuart Vines, also part of the Fitzgerald Expedition, summit Aconcagua.
- 1934 – A Polish team consisting of Konstanty Narkiewicz-Jodko, Stefan Daszyński, Wiktor Ostrowski and Stefan Osiecki make the 1st ascent of the east side via the Polish Glacier Route on March 9.
- 1940 – On March 7, France’s Adrienee Bance becomes the 1st woman to summit Aconcagua.
- 1953 – In September, Argentinian’s E. Huerta, H. Vasalla, and F. Godoy make the 1st winter ascent.
- 1954 – In February, a French team consisting of René Ferlet, Pierre Lesueur, Adrien Dagory, Robert Paragot, Edmond Denis, Lucien Berardini and Guy Poulet make the 1st ascent of the South Face
- 1985 – Hikers find a well preserved mummy of a 7-year-old Incan boy at 17,060 feet / 5200 meters on the SW ridge of Cerro Pyramidal, a sub peak of Aconcagua. This could be proof that natives climbed the mountain long before recorded history.
- 2007 – In November, 87-year-old Scott Lewis becomes the oldest person to climb Aconcagua.
- 2008 – In March, Francois Bon makes the 1st speed flying descent. He descended the 9000′ South Face in 4 minutes, 50 seconds.
- 2013 – On December 24, 9-year-old Tyler Armstrong becomes the youngest person to climb Aconcagua.
- 2014 – Ecuadorian-Swiss Karl Eglof, beats Killian Jornet’s FKT, to set a new fastest known time on Aconcagua with a time of 11 hours ad 52 minutes.
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