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2019-10-31 13-49-02 Tupungato.jpg
Aerial view of Tupungato volcano from Argentina.
Highest point
Elevation6,570 m (21,560 ft)[A]
Prominence2,765 m (9,072 ft)[1]
Coordinates33°21′30″S 69°46′12″W / 33.35833°S 69.77000°W / -33.35833; -69.77000Coordinates: 33°21′30″S 69°46′12″W / 33.35833°S 69.77000°W / -33.35833; -69.77000[1]
Tupungato is located in Argentina
Location on the Argentina–Chile border
LocationMendoza Province, ArgentinaMetropolitan Region, Chile
Parent rangePrincipal Cordillera, Andes
Age of rockPleistocene[2]
Mountain typeLava dome[2]
Volcanic arc/beltSouth Volcanic Zone
Last eruption0.8 million years ago.[3]
First ascent1897 by Matthias Zurbriggen and Stuart Vines

Tupungato, one of the highest mountains in the Americas, is a massive Andean lava dome dating to Pleistocene times.[2] It lies on the border between the Chilean Metropolitan Region (near a major international highway about 80 km (50 mi) east of Santiago) and the Argentine province of Mendoza, about 100 km (62 mi) south of Aconcagua, the highest peak of both the Southern and Western hemispheres. Immediately to its southwest is the active Tupungatito volcano (literally, little Tupungato), which last erupted in 1987.

Tupungato Department, an important Argentine wine-producing region in Mendoza province, is named for the volcano. Recent Chilean mapping indicates it has a height of 6635m.[4]

1947 plane crash[edit]

On August 2, 1947, the airliner Star Dust, an Avro Lancastrian carrying six passengers and five crew over the Andes range, crashed into a steep glacier high on the Argentine side of Tupungato. The plane was quickly buried in the resulting avalanche and heavy snowfall that was taking place at the time. The plane lay undetected deep beneath the snow and glacial ice for over 50 years. Its remnants finally re-emerged at the glacier terminus in 2000. Shortly thereafter, an Argentine army expedition discovered the scattered debris and wreckage, collecting some of the evidence for investigation.

Aerial view of Tupungato (center-left) and Tupungatito.
Tupungato volcano seen from Punta de Vacas, Argentina.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ The given elevation of 6,570 m (21,560 ft) comes from Chilean 1:50.000 topographic mapping and is in accordance with SRTM data; the frequently given elevation of 6,800 m (22,300 ft) is incorrect


  1. ^ a b "Argentina and Chile, Central Ultra Prominences". Peaklist.
  2. ^ a b c González Díaz, Emilio F. Contribución al Conocimiento de la Petrografía del Cerro Tupungato (Provincia de Mendoza) y de otras Rocas Efusivas de la Región. Dirección Nacional de Geología y Minería, 1961.
  3. ^ "Tupungato". Global Volcanism Program. Smithsonian Institution.
  4. ^ Biggar, John (2020). The Andes - A Guide for Climbers and Skiers (5th ed.). Andes. p. 265. ISBN 978-0-9536087-6-8.


External links[edit]