Summer Mountaineering: November – April
Ski Mountaineering: September – November
Monte Tronador, an old sleeping volcano with 3 different peaks, is the most appealing mountain for mountaineering in the Nahuel Huapi National Park. It bears a total of eight glaciers, which is why the mountain has become a mecca for mountaineers. It is named for the thunderous sound the volcano made before it went extinct, but the name (Thundering Mountain) is still apt, for the rumbling icefalls as giant pieces of ice shed from the glacier, which are audible at a safe distance. We will attempt to climb the Pico Argentina, which is the summit that lies completely in Argentina.
We offer this tour also as a Ski Mountaineering tour. The itinerary is the same.
1. Day Bariloche – Refugio Meiling
Meet your UIAGM-mountain guide in Bariloche and check the equipment.
The hike up to Refugio Meiling starts at the hamlet of Pampa Linda. We get there after a 1.5hr drive from Bariloche trough the National Park and along the pale blue Gutierrez and Mascardi lake. First trough a forest and later reaching the hut over a ridge with great views over the glaciers and waterfalls. Night at Meiling hut (D)
- Total ascent: 900m / Distance: 10km
2. Day Refugio Meiling – Pico Argentin0 3187m
We start very early this morning after a breakfast at the hut. The whole trek leads over glaciers. The last bit from the Blanco Pass to the summit gets a bit steeper, but no climbing techniques are required. The average time for this mountaineering day will be about 8-10 hours. Night at Meiling hut (B,L,D)
- Total ascent:1200m / total descent: 1200m / Distance: 8,5 km
Day 3: Refugio Meiling – Bariloche
We walk/ski back down to Pampa Linda and drive back to Bariloche (B)
- Total descent: 900m / Distance: 10km
1 guest: 1200.-USD
2 guests: 700.-USD/ guest
Included: Organisation, 3 days IFMGA-mountain guide, transportation from Bariloche – to Bariloche, 2 nights at Meiling mountain hut, meals as mentioned above (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner)
Not included: personal equipment, drinks, personal insurances
- We offer this tour for safety reasons with max. 2 people per Guide.
A bit of history of the mountain
Many of the first saddlers where struck by the snow-capped, volcanic Cerro Traonador that they could see as they arrived at Bariloche. Tronador means “thundering” because of the sound of ice cracking in its many glaciers. This peak, holy to the Mapuche Indians, separates Chile from Argentina. The missionary friar Mendéndez was the first white to write about its “continuous thundering”. For a long time it was seen as invincible, especially as a German mountaineer called Federico Reichert tried and failed eight times to scale it. Only in 1934 Hermann Clausen finally climbed to the top, alone. He spent the night there after cutting ice steps up the sheer face of the needle. He left a piece of deer skin on a wire and his name and a line from a poem carved into press wood. That same year two Italian climbers died trying to scale the ice cap over the vertical granite peak. In 1937 one of the area’s most famous climber, Otto Meiling, scaled Cerro Tronador, aged eighty. The sacred Tornador did have an Indian name, Tralca Mahuida.