Month: January 2017

SMI’s Aconcagua 2017 Team wraps up their expedition

The SMI Aconcagua 2017 Team reached¬†their hard earned summit on Wednesday, January 18th, 2017. They were overwhelmed with their accomplishment ūüôā

"One of the most rewarding feelings for me is sharing a summit photo after a hard earned climb to the highest point in the Western Hemisphere" ~SMI Founder Kurt Wedberg

“One of the most rewarding feelings for me is sharing a summit photo after a hard earned climb to the highest point in the Western Hemisphere” ~SMI Founder Kurt Wedberg

Kurt Wedberg snaps a picture of his Suunto watch, revealing the reason behind why the air feels so thin on the highest peak in the Western Hemisphere.

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On their way down, the team negotiates the 7’+ tall penitentes.

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A couple of fully loaded Osprey Packs at 19600′ ready for the descent from Aconcagua High Camp! The pack can hold the weight, but the team definitely had their work cut out for them, getting these down!

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The team pauses at their last bridge crossing right before reaching the trail head to revel in their accomplishment. 2 arduous weeks later, they summited the tallest peak outside of Asia. Such an amazing feat!!


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SMI’s Aconcagua 2017 team reaches the summit!

In the wee hours of the morning, the Aconcagua 2017 team got an alpine start for their summit bid. Kurt reports, “With a beautiful night sky displaying the Southern Cross. SMI’s Aconcagua team is taking off for the summit!”

Summit views!

Summit views!

And sure enough, this morning, January 18, 2017, the team reached the summit, “Summit success! Congratulations to SMI’s Aconcagua team on a successful climb to the top of the Western Hemisphere!”

Stay tuned for more pictures as the team descends and returns to civilization! Well deserved hot showers and feasting await them after this nearly 2 week arduous climb.

 

 


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Aconcagua Team 2017 establishes Camp 3!

Aconcagua Team 2017 has carried their gear up to¬†establish Camp 3 at 19,600′ and are sleeping there, tonight. And more excitingly, they are headed for the¬†summit tomorrow!!

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Glacier near Camp 3!

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Hiking up to Camp 3!

Kurt reports that the team is, “We’re fed, hydrated & packed for an alpine start to attempt to reach the highest point in the Western Hemisphere! Weather is clear & calm :)”

Woooo! Let’s all send them the best wishes and looking forward to hearing about the summit!

 

 


Stay tuned for more updates as they continue their ascent! Follow more updates on our facebook and instagram @smiguides

Aconcagua Team 2017 reaches Camp 2!

The Aconcagua 2017 team slept at Camp 1 on Wednesday and carried loads up to Camp 2 (17,700′) today! They returned to Camp 1 and ate a yummy and well deserved pizza dinner.

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Kurt Wedberg (SMI Founder) treats himself to a pepperoni pizza at the end of the day

Camp 1 is also called “Plaza¬†Canad√°” where the team working on acclimatization to optimize their chances of summiting. They will move to Camp 2 tomorrow to sleep there. Check out their climb to Camp 2, today:

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Rock stars trekking up the grade with their packs!

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What a trooper!


Stay tuned for more updates as they continue their ascent! Follow more updates on our facebook and instagram @smiguides

Aconcagua team makes it to Base Camp!

“The Aconcagua team looking strong successfully reach Base Camp at 13,747′ after a 3-day trek! Beautiful weather here. Happy Sunday Everyone!” -Kurt Wedberg (SMI Founder)

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Morning light on the peaks above base camp

 

On Sunday, as Kurt reported, the team reached Base Camp (13,747′) after 3 days of trekking. Here, they will stay for 2 days while embarking on acclimatization hikes. On Jan 11, 2017, they’ll set off for Camp 1 at 16,700′!


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Their shadows as they trek through the Relinchos Valley!

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View of Aconcagua from the trek up to Base Camp

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A ranger at Base Camp giving the team their trash bags. They will carry these trash bags up the mountain and return the loaded bags to them when they descend.

Stay tuned for more updates as they continue their ascent! Follow more updates on our facebook and instagram @smiguides

The Aconcagua 2017 team starts their trip!

Yesterday, the Aconcagua 2017 team gathered in Mendoza, Argentina, and are prepared to start their climb to the summit of Aconcagua! Aconcagua is the tallest peak in the Southern and Western Hemisphere, sitting at 22,841 ft (6,961 m) in the Andes range.aconcagua


The team slowly trickled in from all the US, and even from Slovakia! They started their climb yesterday, on Jan 5, 2017.

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Cory Gaconnet, Martin Takac, Mark Griffith, Kurt Wedberg (SMI Founder), Alex Barber (SMI Guide), Barbara Falco, Cory Gaconnet, and Balmore Flores are psyched to start their climb!

Today, on Jan 6, 2017, by the end of the day, they made it to Pierdra Grande Camp at 10,620′! Their first day was spent trekking through a river filled valley which ended with a delicious authentic Argentinian chicken asado, cooked by their gauchos. Tomorrow, they move to base camp at 13,747′!

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Mules to help carry supplies along the river

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The team pushes through the beautiful valley on their first day.

Stay tuned for more updates as they continue their ascent! Follow more updates on our facebook and instagram @smiguides