Today I met with the Directors of the Park as well as representatives of the governor of Mendoza to make the donation official. The city of Mendoza and Aconcagua Park appreciate what the foundation does for one of the seven summits. It is unfortunate that the Argentine government cannot support this mountain that brings a lot of revenue and tourism, but as they say in Spanish: “es lo que hay” (it is what it is).
The donation is official and the project will begin on December 25th.
Here is a bit of interesting information about Aconcagua park according to the statistics of the previous climbing season 2012-2013 (Diario de los Andes)
Official climbing season: November 15-March 15
62 rescues from the SAR (Search and Rescue)
170 people (in total) were evacuated from the mountain.
6 people died while trying to reach the summit
Compare these numbers to the number of people that work on Aconcagua–however, this is NEVER AT THE SAME TIME because they work in shifts:
45 Park Rangers (normally there are 2-4 in each region of Aconcagua: Horcones (the entrance of the park), Confluencia, Plaza de Mulas base camp, and Nido de Condores high camp)
22 doctors who take care of all of the tourists and climbers that enter the park (there are 2-4 doctors who are stationed at Plaza de Mulas and Nido de Condores)
6-7 SAR who are at Plaza de Mulas and Nido de Condores.
As you can see, the mountain lacks manpower. Therefore, during an accident guides, porters, park rangers, and doctors must assist the Search and Rescue team. Aconcagua needs more manpower but the government claims that it is unable to pay more people. Once again, it’s all about people and working together.