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Back from Aconcagua

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Back from Aconcagua

Postby Alpinist » Wed Dec 21, 2005 5:10 pm

Wow - what a great trip! I met many new friends on Aconcagua, and had the opportunity to dance briefly on the summit after all.

To Peak Freak, Corax, Nadios, Tom, Jim and the entire Swedish team: thanks for the comradery and for the wonderful memories during the climb. This was an adventure that I will never forget!

You may be interested to know that I was hospitalized while enroute back from Puenta del Inca to Mendoza. I thought my appendix had burst during the 4 hour bus ride back. Fortunately, it turned out to be kidney stones. It would really have sucked to survive the mountain only to die on the bus ride back. I am safely back home now, on meds and reflecting on what a great trip I had. My thanks and best wishes to all of you...! A special thanks to Eileen who helped me tremendously during my "crisis".

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Last edited by Alpinist on Tue May 30, 2006 11:31 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby Bill562 » Wed Dec 21, 2005 10:04 pm

Right on dude
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby Alpinist » Thu Dec 22, 2005 2:42 am

Thanks Lolli & Bill...! The route was easy, but the altitude made it more difficult than I expected. It was quite challenging!
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby William Marler » Thu Dec 22, 2005 6:28 pm

Congrats on the summit. Good job.

I know how you feel. I passed my kidney stones two weeks ago today, I'm glad it was not on the mountain. I leave in 4 days. Still a bit tender.

How were the snow conditions. What route did you do?

Cheers William
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby Corax » Thu Dec 22, 2005 6:52 pm

George,
I just arrived in Mendoza after saying bye to the group in Vina del Mar.
That summit day...
So chaotic and so many people in an awful condition. I've seldom seen anything like it.
Like a bowling alley. People falling all over the place.
I've told you before and I tell you again:
It was great to have you there high up on the peak. Very few out of the nine persons had any mountaineering background and even though you were affected by the altitude, your experience added some stability to the group.
Are you going to write a trip report?
I may do so, when I have the time.
It's dangerous to be right when the government is wrong. Voltaire
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby Corax » Thu Dec 22, 2005 6:58 pm

WM,
We were on the normal route.
Not much snow, which surprised me some as the rest of Los Andes holds quite a lot this year.
My guess is there will be very little snow to melt at Camp Canada very soon and even the supply at Nido may be scarce later on, as there is no frozen lake there this year.
The caneleta was ok. You can easily climb it without crampons, but they are of help when going down. The axe you can leave at home.

I'm in Mendoza. When will you arrive? The 27'th? I may be here then. It would be nice to meet over a coffe.

JC.
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby Alpinist » Thu Dec 22, 2005 9:27 pm

Hola William. Eileen and I intended to do the Polish Traverse, but they could not get mules in to Plaza Argentina yet due to an avalance on that side of the mountain. So we did the Normal Route... They opened Plaza Argentina a few days after we had started.

I echo Janne's concerns about the snow at Camp Canada. You will soon have have to walk a long way to find it. As for the technical aspect, we only crossed snow in brief patches above the Caneleta. Some people used crampons for the final stretch. I did not, and I did not think it was very difficult at all without them. It depends on your comfort level really as to whether or not you would want to have them.

We missed you this trip. Hope to see you next time...!

Janne, thanks again for the kind words and companionship. You and Nadios did a great job managing the day with such a large group. I'm not sure that I'll have time to write a TR. I may do so over the weekend, if no one else has done so sooner.
Last edited by Alpinist on Tue May 30, 2006 11:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby William Marler » Thu Dec 22, 2005 9:54 pm

Thanks for the news. Interesting on the snow.

We will be trying the Polish traverse. I will be in Mendoza on the 27th of December arriving at 11:30 am. Will be in town just to get my permits and those of three others.
Will be meeting 3 people at the Hotel Nutibara at as close to 12:00 as possible.
Then fresh fruit and cheese, supplies. Then will we be heading to Penetentes ASAP. Perhaps we could squeeze in a coffee at the hotel Nutibarra.

Sorry I missed your expedition. But I don't think you would have wanted two people passing Kidney stones on the same trip. Must have been scary for you (especially if you did not have an idea of what it was. I know it was painfull and scary for me and I was in a local hospital).

Cheers William
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby Alpinist » Thu Dec 22, 2005 10:41 pm

That was my first episode with kidney stones. I must confess, I thought it was something much worse. I was sure that my adventure would end with me laying in that climber's cemetery in Penetentes.
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby Alpinist » Sat Dec 24, 2005 5:08 am

Lolli, I discovered today upon doing some research that Diamox is known to cause kidney stones. If you don't drink enough water, that increases your chances of getting them. I think it was these 2 factors over the course of the 14 day expedition that caused the kidney stones. Fortunately, I didn't feel any symptoms during the climb. It was the first day after I was off the mountain that it hit me. I've found Diamox to be very helpful for sleeping at high altitude. But now that this has happened, I won't use it any more.
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby Bill562 » Sat Dec 24, 2005 7:38 pm

The more reason to climb in Peru - coca leaves are legal (maybe in other countries in South America as well?).

Also, I read that garlic helps with altitude, which kind of makes sense as garlic thins the blood.
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby Andinistaloco » Mon Dec 26, 2005 5:00 am

Nice work Alpinist. Looking forwrd to the trip report, "kidney stones on Aconcagua"

How were the temperatures and conditions on the peak & approach? I'm going to be down there in a couple of days.
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby Alpinist » Mon Dec 26, 2005 5:43 am

Lolli, yes it is important to look good. You never know who might run into on the mountain... :-)

Juh33 - while we were there, I would estimate the temps above 14,000' to be in the single digits (F) at night and a high of 25-35 (F) during the day. Obviously it's colder the higher you are. The winds varied greatly from 10-20 MPH a couple of days to 60-70MPH the day we broke camp at Nido. We hit a stretch of 4-5 days when the weather was quite favorable for summiting. Lucky timing for us!

Good luck on your climb! May the weather Gods smile on you.
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby marnold92701 » Tue Dec 27, 2005 5:50 am

Hey Alp... Congratulations on your summit! Hope you're feeling better. Mike.
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Re: Back from Aconcagua

Postby Andinistaloco » Tue Dec 27, 2005 7:14 am

Thanks for the beta!

I've been sacrificing to the weather gods in the hopes that they'll be lenient. So far all I've gotten is a bad ear infection. Guess we'll see....
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