Month: November 2012

Climbing Aconcagua and Skate for Hope

My wife has been a wonderful asset in my training. Encouraging me in my efforts at climbing Aconcagua and other peaks around the world. She puts up with all my training and my closet packed with gear. Even the overflow into the garage and my home office. I couldn’t do it without her help.

Climbing Aconcagua and Skate for Hope Donation Page
Angie’s Donation page at Skate for Hope

I’d like to return that support now and help her with her efforts for Skate for Hope. This is her fourth year with the Breast Cancer Charity Skating event. Her third year as a fundraiser and skater. She’s been a group organizer for two years now, and will be skating in the 2013 performance in June in Ohio. This is what I’d like to do now in climbing Aconcagua. Help Angie exceed her goals for fundraising.

Angie’s Donation Page at Skate for Hope: Click Here

Climbing Aconcagua for Angie - here on Elbrus in the Russian Caucasus
Angie above the Barrels Huts on Elbrus.

I have a friend who climbs for a charity, and his challenge is to offer a penny per foot to assist with his charity. I’d love to help Angie by climbing Aconcagua and asking you to donate a penny per foot too. Here is a graph of simple elevation stats for Aconcagua:

Location Elevation From Last From Horcones From Base Camp
Horcones Trailhead 9,185
Plaza de Mulas (base camp) 14,110 4,925 4,925 0
Camp Canada (camp one) 16,075 1,965 6,890 1,965
Nido de Condores (camp two) 17,715 1,640 8,530 3,605
Camp Berlin (camp three) 19,360 1,645 10,175 5,250
Canaletta (crux) 21,325 1,965 12,140 7,215
Summit 22,855 1,530 13,670 8,745

The first column shows the approximate elevation of the standard camps used while climbing Aconcagua. The second column shows the elevation gain for each segment of the climb. The third shows the elevation gain for each camp starting from the trailhead. The fourth shows the elevation gain for each camp or landmark from the base camp.

Climbing Aconcagua for Angie - here crossing a snow bridge on Rainier
Angie overcoming fear of crevasses on a snow bridge – Muir Snowfield, Rainier

Climbing Aconcagua Success

I may or may not make the summit. I will be climbing solo with no support after base camp. I will be climbing Aconcagua Alpine Style – meaning I intend to move from camp to camp until I hit the summit. I will have a SPOT Connect with me, and will make the link available to follow my progress.

What I ask from you is that you commit to a target goal of a penny a foot. I suggest you set a target for a penny per foot for my total elevation above Horcones, the trailhead. If I am successful in climbing Aconcagua, you will commit to $136.70 for your Breast Cancer donation. If that won’t work for you, try to set a target from base camp. If I summit, you will commit to $87.45. Even if you commit to the segment from the Caneletta (loose gravel chute) to the summit, that $15.30 will be a blessing and a benefit to the cause.

Climbing Aconcagua for Angie - here on Mount Fuji
High Five on Fuji – Angie is a hit with the locals

You can commit in public, posting on my Facebook Page. You can commit in public in the comments below. You can commit in private, and just be accountable to yourself. All I ask is that you commit, and lend a hand, no matter how small or weak. Together we can make a difference.

Update: November 13
I wanted to point out that the donations are made at the website of the Skate for Hope organization, and go directly to them. It passes through Angie’s page, which is just so that they are able to track her fundraising efforts. At a certain level of fundraising success, she is able to present flowers to a headliner. I am solely responsible for all costs of climbing Aconcagua. Angie is responsible for all costs associated with her skating performance, including costumes, travel, and lodging. Thanks for your commitment to help.

Aconcagua Logistics Flights and Visa

The key to Aconcagua logistics is planning before you go. Flying to Mendoza Argentina is relatively painless. I went before in March of 2010 during the earthquake in Chile that closed the Santiago airport. LAN (the airline) was really accommodating to get me back to the states. If you book with American, you’ll most likely end up on LAN anyway at least from Santiago to Mendoza. Some people fly in to Buenos Aires with the intention of switching to a local flight to Mendoza. Be aware that there are two airports with a 90 minute bus ride between them. One is primarily International and the other local. Plan accordingly.

Aconcagua Logistics select airport carefully
Buenos Aires Oceanside Airport View

Another important consideration for Aconcagua logistics is planning for your Visa. From the United States there is no particular requirement except the Reciprocity Fee. In Santiago Chile, if you will be leaving the terminal you will have to pay the Chilean Reciprocity Fee. This fee represents what a citizen of Chile would pay for entry to the USA. You shouldn’t have to leave the terminal though. Most of the flights I’ve looked at on LAN have reasonable layovers in Santiago. The International Terminal had quite a few shops, though I haven’t been there since the earthquake.

Aconcagua Logistics airport information Santiago Chile
Santiago Chile Airport

Aconcagua Logistics Reciprocity Fee

In Argentina you have to pay their Reciprocity Fee. In years past they would often only collect this if you were to fly in to Buenos Aires. Now they require you to pay online previous to your trip at the Provincia Pagos website. You are required to create an account and pay online. When you get to Mendoza then you are to trade in your online printout for an official copy.

Aconcagua Logistics Argentina Reciprocity Fee
Log in for Argentina Reciprocity Fee

I just now got my flights for November 24 – December 8 and haven’t had a chance to complete my Aconcagua logistics by applying for my Argentina Reciprocity Fee online yet. I will post an updated article when I have.