The Roof of Patagonia

So is known the Domuyo volcano, which with its 4,709 meters high is the highest point of Patagonia, located on the Argentine side, to the North of the province of Neuquén. Anyone who wants it can not be a rookie on the mountain, must have a lot of mood, fitness and take appropriate equipment for cold and wind. In fact, one of the main difficulties encountered on the climb are the strong winds,and it’s no wonder that the volcano is situated in the wind”. But the landscape in its Summit and the visual of Patagonia bounty all the effort, says who‘s already been there.

The region where Mount Domuyo is installed is to the West of the country, in place of difficult access. One of the ways to get there is by Buenos Aires, Argentina‘s capital. From there one must follow to Neuquén (1,161 km, some 17 hours by bus or 2 hours by plane) and this small town to the village Chos Malal (over 400 km, about 7 hours by bus), which is the nearest town from the beginning of the trail. Well, close in terms, because it will take a couple more 4 hours by car or van to arrive at what is called locally base camp, where begins the ascent to mount Domuyo, 150 km from Chos Malal. You can also go to Bariloche to Chos Malal on roads (about 470 km).


You need at least four days up and down the mountain. More favourable seasonis between the months of December and February, in the summer, when there islittle snow. But it is also possible to perform the ascent in winter, for those who like, being that the script completely changes because it will be necessary to follow by walk from Chos Malal. Which means about three more days walking with racket in snow, just in this first excerpt.


The mount Domuyo was first climbed in November 1903 and the expedition hadat least four people: the Salesian priest Lino del Valle, your brother Gumercindodel Valle, Santiago Forgerini and José Roza. There are not many records on the rise.


Although not present major technical difficulties, has high degree of difficulty characterized by a sum of factors such as strong winds, freezing cold, brittle rockssolo (morainas), altitude and steep hills. So it is recommended to climb accompanied by a guide. About four years ago died at the scene, by freezing, two climbers who got lost and couldn’t come down. Not know the region and were withouta guide. There are many options of tourism companies that organize the script,however, the local guide better known name is Beto (Horacio Alberto Fuentes),who knows the region like no one and can be contacted by email


The most common script, in summer, is divided as follows:


First dayclimb up to camp 1, the 3,000 meters of altitude. It takes 4 to 6 hours of walking and can count on the help of mules to carry the equipment. There are several points of defrost water.


Second day Of the 4 6 hours walk to camp 2, 3,800 meters above sea level. Intense rise in morainas soil (basalt and sandstone fractured rocks), very difficult towalk because every meter that rises, one descends half. It is essential the use ofbat.


Third day the day of the attack on the Summit. To go out early, tops at 7 A.M.,for being an intense day and long. Take each 6/7:00 to the Summit, rising all the time, with very strong winds and a stretch of approximately 300 metres of ice climbing with crampon. It is essential to be with two good gloves (one internal, one external) to protect himself from the winds, as well as sunscreen and lip balm.At the Summit, if that’s enough for one of the sides of the crater and walk about15 minutes more until the highest point, around the mouth of the volcano. The descent is much faster. The Summit follows the 2:00 pm camp about 3 hours ofdescent. Ali makes a stop to rest and to dismantle the camp, then continues its descent in another two to 3 hours walk to camp 1, where you will stay overnight.


Day four descent to the base camp, in about 4 hours.


The mount Domuyo is an extinct volcano that has become a beautiful mountain,with a great snowy Ridge which runs your crater. There are no records of volcanic activity there, however, there is incidence of thermal waters in several locationsnear the volcano. In fact, a good alternative to relax after the ascent is to visit the Aguas Calientes and take a delicious bath in waterfalls with temperature up to 50°.


The challenge of climbing the roof of Patagonia” might be the main reason that has led many people to this attractive mountain. In addition, there is another special attraction is the fact that it is also little sought in Patagonia, unlike other mountains that in certain seasons are very crowded.


Tracking mount domuyo & Directions


The ascent to mount Domuyo requires the use of technical equipment, especially to face the strong winds and the cold. As clothing, we recommend that you use the Parkha Klima that is a true two-in-one jacket, uniting the fabric Dry Tech anorak, waterproof, and a coat of polar fiber in one piece. To follow, the Climatic Pants is a good option because it is made in the same fabric of Parkha and have backup in rip-stop fabric in key points such as knees and ankles.

To bring all materials is ideal to use a cargo bag. For those who can minimize the equipment and carry few things we recommend the Crampon bag 68, very versatile because it has a front pocket that can be detached and turns into a smallbackpack. A good choice is the 75 liter backpack mountain. She has three external pockets, reinforced Nylon canvas background, aluminum frame and adjustingthe straps in five points. Access can be by the cover or the back. All made in thick nylon, being ideal for super heavy and intense.
For the well-deserved rest every day, we recommend the use of a good sleeping bag. What stand lower temperatures in our models, that’s Super Feather ice, which has resistance up to15° c. Has double layer with filling into Microtech (microsilica fiber filament), which increase the air retention and consequently heat upmore. Weighs 1.7 kg and is made of ripstop nylon.