Great news from Aconcagua today, the South African team of Andrew Raubenheimer and Dobek Pater have reached the summit of the mountain today, completing the Polish Traverse Direct Route. They had intended to do the more technically demanding Polish Direct, but conditions on the glacier were reportedly unsteady.
According to the latest dispatches from the home team, Dobek reached the summit earlier today, but they note that it appears that Andrew turned back two meters from the top. He seemed to be suffering from Acute Mountain Sickness, and decided it was prudent to turn back a bit sooner.
My first reaction on hearing that he turned back just two meters from the top was “Why couldn’t he go that last little way?” But at this point we don’t know exactly how sick he was, so he made the right choice to go back. I hope he gets off the mountain fine and is soon resting, and celebrating at lower altitude.
Congrats to Dobek for reaching the summit, but clearly this was a great team effort, and Andrew deserves much credit and adulations as well. It’s a shame that he couldn’t stand on top with his friend, but this was a job well done. Now get down safe boys.
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