||6,962 metres (22,841
||1897 Matthias Zurbriggen (first
||False Polish Glacier
On Christmas day December 25, 2001 Adam Mallory, age
19 and his father Dan Mallory age 50 left Toronto for
Argentina, South America to attempt to summit Mt. Aconcagua
(“the stone sentinel”), the highest mountain
in South America and in the world outside of the Himalayas
at 22,841 feet located in the Andes Mountains in Argentina
near the border of Chile.
We started acclimatizing at 8,858 feet on December
27, 2001 and began our climb early on December 29th,
2001 at an altitude of 7,628 feet.
Our route was the False Polish Glacier route which
was more remote, more scenic and more difficult.
Our minds were on the Andinista cemetery at the base
of the mountain where we viewed the graves of about
150 people who had died on the mountain from various
After overcoming the challenges of exhaustion, headaches,
bleeding noses, snow storms, high winds, sun burned
tongues, faces and nostrils, and severe cold, we finally
arrived at the Independencia high camp at 20,600 feet.
After an evening of very cold temperatures, nausea
and vomiting, nose bleeds, and being awoken through
the night gasping for air from the low oxygen, we awoke
on summit day to begin our summit attempt at 9:15am.
After many hours of long and steep snow covered climbing,
we reached the summit at 5pm in semi cloudy conditions
and after a short stay, we began the long downhill return
arriving back at our tent just before dark. A very long
and exhausting day.
The climb down was less taxing particularly with the
extra oxygenated red blood cells. We descended the mountain
arriving at the base of the mountain in darkness on
the evening of January 13th, 2002 quite exhausted but
thrilled to have reached the top of South America’s
highest mountain 20 days after arriving in the country.