Aconcagua is unique as it is the tallest mountain not located in Asia, making it the highest point in the Western and the Southern Hemisphere.
Why Is It Famous?
Aconcagua is famous for its height, as this is the highest mountain outside of Asia, with its highest point reaching an elevation of 6,960.8 meters.
What Is Nearby?
This famous mountain is part of the Principal Cordillera in the Andes Mountain Range. This places it within Mendoza Province of Argentina. The mountain is around five kilometers from San Juan Province, 15 kilometers from the Chilean border, and about 112 kilometers from Mendoza. To the east and north, you will find Valle de las Vacas while the Valle de Los Horcones Inferior is to the south and west. The mountain, as well as its surrounding areas, make up the Aconcagua Provincial Park.
Within the Aconcagua Provincial Park, you can find multiple glaciers. The largest of these, Ventisquero Horcones Inferior, is around 10 kilometers long. Both the Glaciar Este/Ventisquero Relinchos system and the Ventisquero de las Vacas Sur systems are around five kilometers. Most people who travel up this area will take the Polish Glacier.
The mountain itself came from the Nazca Plate subduction under the South American Plate. It was an active stratovolcano during the Late Cretaceous to Early Paleocene and until the Miocene. There were multiple volcanic complexes along the edge of a shallow sea-filled basin. Between 8-10 million years ago, there was a decrease in the subduction angle, causing thrust faults to lift Aconcagua. The rocks on the flanks of the mountain are volcanic, including pyroclastics, breccias, and lavas. Around the area, you can find turbidites, evaporates, carbonates, and limestone from the basin.
Events In Time
The first attempt to try and climb Aconcagua’s summit was led by a German explorer and geologist in 1883. The first ascent recorded was in 1897.
Aconcagua is the tallest mountain in the world if you exclude all of the peaks in Asia, offering a rich geological history.