Our local guides Chicho, Maxi and Mauricio were perfectly acclimatised, fit and strong, and they helped us with the gruelling summit day with advice and encouragement as we battled with the lack of oxygen. It is a real toil at those altitudes, and I can only imagine what it would have been like in less clement weather! We did have an electrical storm on the descent to Plaza la Mulas base camp as we traversed the mountain, and that had our hair standing on end and our ice axes singing. Scary, especially when the thunder bursts around you!
It was doubly satisfying as we ascended the Vacas and Relinchos valleys, and descended the Horcones, thus making a full traverse of the mountain. If anyone ever tells you Aconcagua is just a walk, ask them if they have done it? Yes, it may not be at all technical, but the objective danger of rockfall is very real, as is the debilitating effects of extreme altitude. Add all of that to the fact that you have to load carry at height, and it is no gimme!
Well done to all the team who made the summit, and also well done to the guys who through one reason or another weren't able to do so - We know how hard that decision is to make. The mountain will always be there another day.