Rene, Nigel and Fermin are all tucked into their tents at 16,400′ on the east side of Aconcagua this evening. The satellite phone transmission was unfortunately interrupted as Rene was describing the tasty dinner of chicken, beef and vegetable tacos that Fermin prepared for this, their Christmas Eve on the mountain.
The team made good time as they launched up the mountain. The plan for tomorrow is to carry loads and acclimatize by climbing up to the next camp, at about 18,000′. After depositing some supplies at the next camp, they will drop back down to Camp 1 for the evening. This system of “climbing high and sleeping low” is a proven technique for climbers, as it both helps get all their food, fuel and supplies up the mountain, but it also aids their bodies as they acclimatize to each new altitude.