Mount Cerro Mercedario is in the Argentinian province of San Juan, about 100 km north of Aconcagua. It is the highest mountain in the Cordillera de la Ramada range and the eighth-tallest peak in the Andes.

Why Is It Famous?

Mercedario is known for being part of the Andes mountain range and for having Inca ruins near the summit. It is noted for being an interesting climb. The south-west ridge is considered the most difficult part of the mountain to climb, and this past January, Rudi Vittori, Mario Tavagnutti, Sergio Figel, and Mauro Collini made the ascent to the top. The Andes mountain range, in general, is also known for bringing a historical glimpse into South American people from centuries ago.

What Is Nearby?

Mercedario is part of the Andes and located in the province of San Juan near the Chilean border of western Argentina. It rises to about 6,770 meters. The nearest airport is Ministro Pistarini International Airport in Buenos Aires.

Geological Description

The southeast side of Mercedario is a glacial plane. It is the eighth-highest mountain in South America. The snow from the peaks feeds rivers flowing out to the western terrain. The three main rivers are San Juan, Jachal, and Bermejo. They are used for irrigation. The mountains are set against cultivated lands for growing barley, onions, apples, and olives.

Events in Time

Adam Karpinski and Wiktor Ostrowski were the first to make the ascent of Cerro Mercadario in 1934. They built a cairn on the summit. Another ascent was made in 1968, by a Japanese group with Konstanty Jodko-Narkiewicz leading the climb. Inca ruins were discovered by Sergio Gino and Antonio Nigris in 1972.


Part of the Andes range of mountains, Mercedario is the eighth-tallest peak in South America. Inca ruins were found as early as 1972 in the area.