“Commercial” or “Sport” Ascensions to Aconcagua Park 2014/15 climbing season. Foreign Mountain Guides work authorization for Aconcagua.
Aconcagua Provincial Park Administration wishes to share the current legislation that comes into effect for ascent permits for the 2014/15 official season.
The current legislation on Aconcagua comes into force due intense participatory process in which all members of Aconcagua Provincial Park have taken part, namely: companies, guides associations, guides professional training schools, business chambers, etc.
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The park administration will consider, due to security matters and state responsibility, ascent expeditions as such, only those which are guided; or exceptionally Port expeditions (prior authorization needed).
A special register will be set up in order to allow foreign guides to work during official season accompanying ascent expeditions.
According to previous agreement to be signed with EPGAMT (Mountain and trekking Guides Provincial School) will seek to validate those foreign certifications and qualification and/or incumbencies to officially work inside the Park as a professional guide responsible for commercial expeditions.
A specific agreement to be signed with AAGM will allow us to accept UIAGM and UIMLA validations.
Introducing these regulations is an attempt to increase the number of visitors to Aconcagua under higher security standards.
- What is a Commercial Expedition to Aconcagua? – It is an expedition in which visitors hire a professional guide responsible for the planning and itinerary of the entire expedition. Guides establish a commercial and lucrative relation between him/ her and the members of an expedition; in brief; the guide is practicing a remunerated work.
- What is a Sport Expedition to Aconcagua? – It is an expedition in which its members are professionals or assiduous mountaineering exercisers. These expeditions are not led by a guide. Therefore, there is not an economic interest among these members. Both expedition types (commercial and sport), make regular use of services provided by companies inside the park, such as, accommodation, mules, porters, communications, etc. However, what differentiates these expeditions from one another is the fact commercial expeditions hire a guide to conduct such expedition under remunerative conditions.
- Why during the 2014/15 season ascent expeditions on Aconcagua will be considered guided expeditions? – We do acknowledge that most people who try to reach Aconcagua’s Summit hire a “person” to help them do so. And even if we encourage athletes, amateur mountaineers and tourists to visit the park, we strongly believe that mountain guides are to ensure security conditions inside the park. In addition, mountain guides play a key role in measuring risks, passing on knowledge and values regarding the environmental preservation, and respecting cultural heritage and shared interests by the local community.
- What should I do if I want to work as a guide on Aconcagua being a foreigner? – To work Inside the park being a foreigner, It is necessary to have a qualification or certification which meets the terms and conditions of one of the official institutions In Argentina, namely (EPGAMT – AAGM – AGPM). Furthermore, it is compulsory to get a temporal authorization granted by Direccion Nacional de Migraciones (National Migration Office) through a “solicitor* that could be one of the official companies working in Aconcagua Provincial Park or AAGM (Mountain Guides Argentinean Association). Currently, due to a specific agreement, International Qualifications given by UIAGM (IVBV or IFMGA) are accepted. Finally, Aconcagua Provincial Park Administration authorization is needed to start working officially in the park. UIAGM includes associations, among others, from the following countries: Germany, Argentina, Austria, Bolivia, Canada, France, Great Britain, Italy, Japan, Nepal, Norway, Poland, Peru, Sweden, Switzerland, Slovenia, USA, etc. UIMLA is official In Andorra, Argentina, Belgium, France, Great Britain, Poland, Spain and Switzerland.
- What if my qualification was not given by IVBV or IFMGA? – You should validate your credentials with one of the local institutions, namely AAGPM (Mountain Guides Argentinean Association) or EPGAMT (Provincial Mountain Guides School). These institutions are entitled o sign agreements to accept different credentials and qualifications – The Aconcagua Park Administration wishes through these agreements with training schools, professional associations both national and foreign to support and encourage high professional standards concerning training and actual competencies
- What if I am a tour leader of expedition to Aconcagua or an experienced person without any qualification? – You will NOT be able to work inside the park as a guide, and you will have to hire an authorized guide following IRAM SECTUR 42.510 regulation. According to the EPGAMT-AAGM-AAGPM-DRNR agreement, a ‘fitting” register will be set up to allow guides to work as such only because of their merits regarding carrier and or working experience in the Park, following the remaining to conditions that should be accurately met. This agreement is meant to be a way to reward working loyalty to Aconcagua Provincial Park. Nevertheless, this list is compiled by park administration and closed since it is considered to be an “exclusive privilege. Therefore, and there is no way to apply for it.
- What if my credentials are not associated with the IVBV? – As in the previous case, you will not be able to work as a guide unless your crediting institution comes to an agreement with our national equal. (Idem question 5).
- What should I do to get an authorization for sport expeditions to Aconcagua? – Applications for sport expeditions should contain full name and address of the person responsible for the expedition and all the members of the expedition; tentative expedition schedule; medical certificate; Physical Aptitude Affidavit; security and contingency plan; enough VHF Radios and batteries, and Risk Acceptance Affidavit, in which you express your willingness to ascent Aconcagua under sport conditions accepting all the conditions imposed by Park Administration.
- What if a person who got the authorization for sport expedition on Aconcagua is caught working as a guide? – This is also considered an infraction and the penalties range from fines to immediate expulsion from the park and future bans on processing permits to the park
- What if a commercial expedition on Aconcagua is caught being led by a non-authorized guide? – This is considered an infraction and as such penalties will be imposed, depending on the case, ranging from written warnings, fines or immediate expulsion of the entire expedition from the park.
- Do commercial expeditions to Aconcagua have to comply with another requirement? – All commercial expeditions must hire an authorized Guide who should have non-contractual liability insurance favoring the Mendoza Government.