Aconcagua (6,962m), 2009-10 Overview

South America, Argentina, Central Andes
Author: Marcelo Scanu, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Climb Year: 2009. Publication Year: 2010.

This season had fewer climbers and more trekkers than last season, with 3,712 attempting the summit, compared to 4,048 last year. Foreign climbers rose to 89%. The first two weeks of January 2010 were the busiest for climbing. There were fewer evacuations and only one death. The historic summit cross was stolen. On past occasions the wind had taken, but it was found. This time anonymous thieves made off with it. Now there is a new one.

In addition to Chad Kellogg’s solo (below), the massive south face saw other ascents. Young Argentine climber Mariano Galván soloed the Messner variation of the French Route, beginning February 11, 2010, and taking 34 hours. He went without a tent, in very low temperatures. Also in February, Argentines Gabriel Fava and Anibal Maturano ascended the original 1954 French Route.