22,841 Foot Aconcagua Looms for Ft. Rich Staff Sergeant
Anchorage, Alaska - Staff Sergeant Trevor Jones, a member of the United States Army stationed at Ft. Richardson just north of Anchorage, is taking on one of the seven most difficult challenges of his life. Staff Sergeant Jones is attempting to be the only active-duty service member to summit the tallest peaks on all 7 continents. With Mt McKinley successfully complete, he turns his attention to his second quest; South America’s Aconcagua. And, as an active-duty soldier, he’s doing it to raise money and awareness for those he has, is, and will serve with in the United States Military; the Wounded Warrior Project.
The tallest peak in the America’s, Aconcagua stands ready to challenge Staff Sergeant Jones at a daunting 22,841 feet. Nestled in the Andes Mountains in Argentina near the infamous plane crash site of Uruguay Air Force Flight 541, Aconcagua’s summit, in the Argentine province of Mendoza, is located 3 miles from San Juan Province, 9 miles from the international border with Chile, and 50 miles northeast of the Chilean capitol city of Santiago. Aconcagua is the tallest peak in both the western and southern hemispheres.
Although temperatures in Mendoza currently top out at approximately 100 degrees (Mendoza is the reverse latitude of Tucson, Arizona), Aconcagua boasts a climate comparable to Mt. McKinley, North America’s tallest mountain. Summit temperatures range from zero degrees to 30 below. If normal conditions weren’t enough, Staff Sergeant Jones can expect above normal moisture in the air during his assault, as he will be faced with weather patterns spurred by a La Nina season.
And if that weren’t enough yet, his travel and ascent/descent schedule is a grueling one. Staff Sergeant Jones will leave Anchorage on January 30th, will begin his climb a mere two days later, and will attempt to summit on or around February 12th through the 15th, depending on weather conditions. From the summit, he has left himself with 3 days to complete his descent. And, equipped with only climbing gear, food, a GPS, and a rescue beacon tracking device, he’s taking off alone.
The Wounded Warrior Project (www.woundedwarriorproject.org <http://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/> ) is a non-profit, non-partisan organization headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida, with additional program offices in New York City and Washington, D.C. WWP was founded in Roanoke, Virginia by a group of veterans and friends who took action to help the injured service men and women of this generation. Moved by the difficult stories of the first wounded service members returning from both Afghanistan and Iraq, they realized that something needed to be done to help these brave individuals beyond brass bands and ticker tape parades. The resulting objective was to provide tangible support for the wounded and their families on the road to healing. The resulting objective has birthed into what is now the Wounded Warrior Project.