go to
South America
Ultras Page

go to
World Ultras
go to
go to



  52 Mountain Summits with Prominence of 1,500 meters or greater

Please send comments to webmaster.

Compiled 2005-06 by Jonathan de Ferranti with assistance from John Biggar and Aaron Maizlish.

This is one of eight lists that cover the known ultra-prominences for South America.  This project represents original research into accurate elevations and prominence of the world's major summits, employing both new data sources and published topographic materials.  Parts of South America have notoriously poor information on summit elevations - values found in publication and on the internet for a given summit frequently vary by several hundred meters.  We  strive to more accurately represent elevations through interpretation of a variety of resources, including our own interpolation methods of SRTM data (see also theory section.)

South America has 208 ultra-prominences (13.6% of the world's total).  118 of these summits are in Chile and/or Argentina.  These have been segmented into three lists, as follows:

Argentina and Chile North:  Andes region north of Aconcagua.  This includes the Puna de Atacama, and the provinces of Northern Argentina. 
Note that three of the summits on the North list also appear on the Bolivia list.

Argentina and Chile Central:  The northern border of this region is the low saddle, Hito Paso de la Iglesia, near the major road and rail pass connecting Santiago, Chile to Mendoza, Argentina.  This is the key saddle for Cerro Tupungato (#1 on that list).  The 22 peaks on the Central list represent the Andes between Tupungato and the region near Puerto Montt.

Argentina and Chile South-Patagonia
(on this page):  The northern border of this region is a low broad saddle near the town of Epuyén, Argentina.  This represents a line running approximately from Puerto Montt, Chile east to the Rio Chubut in Argentina.  There are an impressive 52 known ultras in the Southern region, including four island highpoints. 

The mountains of Patagonia are less well-mapped than the rest of Chile and Argentina (and most of the world for that matter.)  A large number of the elevations below are derived at least in part by interpolation of SRTM data, and comparison of that data to the often wildly divergent published values.  As a general rule, the re-mapping of Chile at 1:50,000 and 1:100,000, conducted by the Instituto Geografico Militar from the 1980s onward, greatly improves the accuracy of spot elevations of many summits.  However we still find numerous mountain regions (particularly in the South) where spot elevations show a consistent disagreement with SRTM data, even while the general topography agrees, and also regions where topographic mapping is largely void.  Spot elevations on topographic maps published by Argentina have proven too unreliable for our purposes.  While we believe that the elevations published on these three lists represent a significant improvement over other elevation data, the reader should be advised that the elevations mostly do not reflect official data.

For those of you interested in matters of national pride; there are 78 summits in Chile or on its borders, which ranks fifth among the nations of the world.  There are 58 summits in Argentina or on its borders, which ranks seventh in the world.  (18 summits are believed to lie exactly on the Chile/Argentina border.)  Such is the nature of prominence that deeply carved glacial landscapes are favored when the summits are also high:  Chilean Patagonia, British Columbia and Alaska have a significant number of the world's ultra-prominent summits. 

Corrections: March 19, 2011

Summit Name
ID Code

1 Monte San Valentin Chile 4058 3696 362 46º35'42"S 073º20'45"W SA006 13313 12126 [1]
2 Monte San Lorenzo
Argentina/Chile 3706 3319 387 47º35'30"S 072º18'24"W SA009 12159 10889 [2]
3 Volcán Lautaro Chile 3580 3302 278 49º01'09"S 073º30'24"W SA010 11745 10833 [3]
4 Monte Darwin (HP Tierra del Fuego) Chile 2580 2580 0 54º39'33"S 069º35'54"W SA022 8464 8464 [4]
5 Monte Melimoyu Chile 2440 2272 168 44º04'33"S 072º51'36"W SA035 8005 7454 [5]
6 Unnamed point Chile 2390 2239 151 43º17'42"S 072º31'33"W SA037 7841 7346 [6]
7 Monte Zeballos Argentina 2700 2228 472 47º02'06"S 071º41'54"W SA039 8858 7310 [7]
8 Cordillera Castillo Chile 2675 2088 587 46º03'54"S 072º12'27"W SA083 8776 6850 [8]
9 Volcán Maca Chile 2300 2066 234 45º06'21"S 073º10'09"W SA057 7546 6778 [9]
10 Monte Sarmiento (Tierra del Fuego) Chile 2187 2040 147 54º27'00"S 070º50'24"W SA060 7175 6693 [10]
11 Cerro Paine Grande Chile 2700 2013 687 51º00'27"S 073º05'45"W SA117 8858 6604 [11]
12 Cerro Fitzroy (Chalten) Argentina 3405 1951 1454 49º16'18"S 073º02'48"W SA076 11171 6401
13 Cerro Mellizo Sur Chile 3300 1945 1355 48º33'18"S 073º08'27"W SA077 10827 6381
14 Cerro Arenales Chile 3437 1900 1537 47º11'45"S 073º28'06"W SA092 11276 6234 [15]
15 Cerro Balmaceda Chile 2035 1885 150 51º25'03"S 073º11'51"W SA090 6676 6184
16 Cerro Pinaculo Argentina 2160 1879 281 50º45'36"S 072º15'21"W SA091 7087 6165
17 Macizo Nevado Chile 2100 1840 260 43º32'39"S 072º12'12"W SA070 6890 6037 [18]
18 Cerro Anexo (see note)
Argentina/Chile 2480 1799 681 42º22'19"S 071º46'00"W SA185 8136 5902 [19]
19 HP Sierra de Avallanos Chile 2360 1776 584 46º31'06"S 072º26'18"W SA112 7743 5827
20 Cerro Tres Frailes Chile 2050 1748 302 48º39'51"S 072º41'12"W SA101 6726 5735
21 Nevado Queulat Chile 2300 1738 562 44º25'06"S 072º22'48"W SA067 7546 5702 [21]
22 Cordon Mariano Moreno Argentina/Chile 3490 1735 1755 49º19'15"S 073º25'00"W SA119 11450 5692
23 Pascua (Mellizo Este) Chile 2250 1732 518 48º39'21"S 072º55'21"W SA120 7382 5682
24 Cerro Ladrillero (HP Isla Riesco) Chile 1705 1705 0 52º57'03"S 072º35'45"W SA122 5594 5594 [24]
25 Cerro Roma Chile 3270 1694 1576 49º58'03"S 073º29'51"W SA149 10807 5558 [25]
26 Cerro Meson Argentina 2636 1688 948 49º45'24"S 073º00'52"W SA100 8648 5537 [26]
27 Cerro Elefantes Chile 2000 1671 329 44º45'21"S 072º25'30"W SA139 6562 5482
28 Cerro Barros Arana Chile 2286 1645 641 43º53'18"S 072º11'06"W SA146 7500 5397
29 Cerro Huemules Chile 1910 1634 276 45º44'09"S 072º26'57"W SA150 6266 5361
Dama Blanca (HP Cord. Sarmiento) Chile 1925 1626 299 51º48'06"S 073º23'03"W SA128 6316 5335
31 Cerro Norte Argentina 2730 1624 1106 49º47'00"S 073º06'24"W SA094 8956 5328 [31]
32 Cordon los Nadis Chile 1780 1622 158 47º32'33"S 072º56'30"W SA151 5840 5321
33 Monte Mentolat (HP Isla Magdalena) Chile 1620 1620 0 44º41'48"S 073º04'33"W SA152 5315 5315
34 Cerro Penitentes Argentina 2943 1612 1331 47º40'30"S 072º15'06"W SA156 9655 5289
35 Cerro Situacion Argentina 2250 1610 640 42º57'21"S 071º39'42"W SA159 7382 5282
36 Gran Campo Nevado Chile 1640 1605 35 52º47'54"S 073º05'33"W SA147 5381 5266
37 Cerro Pietrobelli Chile 2850 1600 1250 50º32'06"S 073º21'27"W SA165 9350 5249
38 Cerro Puno Chile 2200 1590 610 47º17'51"S 073º06'42"W SA167 7218 5216
39 Cerro Aguja Sur Argentina/Chile 2230 1564 666 42º09'45"S 071º50'03"W SA158 7316 5131 [39]
40 Cerro de la Paloma Chile 1995 1559 436 45º50'48"S 072º12'33"W SA187 6545 5115
41 Cordon Soler Chile 2150 1557 593 47º03'12"S 073º03'57"W SA186 7054 5108
42 Cerro Conico Argentina/Chile 2271 1544 727 43º15'51"S 071º44'39"W SA190 7451 5066
43 unknown name Chile 1830 1541 289 45º11'54"S 072º15'48"W SA188 6004 5056
44 Cerro Tenerife Chile 1590 1539 51 51º22'45"S 072º50'57"W SA198 5216 5049
45 HP Peninsula Videau Chile 1580 1534 46 48º06'15"S 073º22'48"W SA189 5184 5033
46 Cerro Desfiladero Chile 2300 1527 773 47º25'33"S 073º11'15"W SA197 7546 5010
47 HP Isla Wellington Chile 1520 1520 0 49º19'15"S 074º30'09"W SA199 4987 4987
48 Volcán Minchinmavida Chile 2450 1518 932 42º47'57"S 072º26'45"W SA206 8038 4980
49 Tres Hermanos Chile 2010 1513 497 44º04'16"S 072º01'01"W SA207 6594 4964
50 Sierra de Sangra Argentina 2200 1507 693 48º28'09"S 072º23'30"W SA208 7218 4944
51 Cerro Cuatro Puntas Chile
1810 1507 303 45º34'45"S 072º19'48"W SA214 5938 4944

52 Monte Burney Chile 1520 1507 13 52º19'30"S 073º22'48"W SA200 4987 4944 [52]

"Error Range" Possible peaks that may be included depending on confirmation of their elevations and saddle heights.
Note there are several more possible contenders - contact authors for details.

Cordón de las Pirámides Argentina 2440 1405 1035 42º54'15"S 071º55'15"W SA072 8005 4610 [E1]


[1]  San Valentin:  This is the highest point in Patagonia.  The Chilean IGM 1:50,000 map gives an elevation of 3910m.  SRTM implies that the summit is at least 4000m. GPS readings by summiters seem to confirm the traditional elevation of 4058m.  The low key saddle is nearby.

[2]  Monte San Lorenzo is a separate summit than Cordon Cochrane, about 5 km apart in the same icefield.

[3]  Lautaro:  New elevation provided in The Andes by John Biggar, 3rd edition 2005, based on SRTM data.

[4]  Darwin:  We have made an estimate of 2580m for the highpoint of Tierra del Fuego based on SRTM analysis.  Other cited elevations include 2467m, 2488m, and 2652m.

[5]  Melimoyu is also cited as 2400m, SRTM indicates that it is marginally higher.

[6]  This unnamed ice dome is the high point of the glaciated region according to the Chilean IGM 1:50,000 map, which gives an elevation of 2390m. This decreases the prominence of nearby Macizo Nevado and the more impressive Volcan Corcovado, which barely misses being an ultra in its own right.

[8]  Castillo:  Both the Chilean IGM 1:50,000 map and the SRTM data have a large void around the summit.  2675m is an often quoted value that would seem to be compatible with photographs.

[9]  Maca is a smooth volcanic cone, and SRTM indicates a summit elevation of 2300m ± 20m.  This is supported by Biggar in "The Andes". Cited elevations of 2960-3079m are based on gross exaggeration.

[10]  Sarmiento: This summit is on the western end of Tierra del Fuego.  Elevations cited include 2234m, 2235m, 2300m and 2404m.  The Chilean IGM 1:100,000 map provides an elevation of 2187m which is the most compatible with the SRTM data.

[11]  Paine Grande:  Amazingly, this famous summit is usually quoted as being over 3000m, although all evidence indicates that this is way off base.  (We would love to see the results of a precise survey).  Interestingly, the usual 3050m elevation is almost exactly 10,000 ft.  We suspect that once upon a time the mountain was guessed to be 10,000 feet without the benefit of a survey - and the rumor has proven to be persistent.  The Chilean maps are void for the area of the summit, as is the SRTM data.  The entire Paine Cordillera is poorly surveyed, nonetheless we have plenty of indication that the actual height is approximately 2700m.  Nearby Cerro Paine Chico is about 2600m (SRTM) and photographs indicate that Paine Grande is just slightly higher.  A geometric analysis from photographs by de Ferranti can be found here.  (A current Argentine road map gives an elevation of 2400m, evidently the Argentine tendency to inflate summit elevations does not apply to peaks lying wholly within Chile.)

[15]  Arenales:  SRTM indicates that this summit is higher than the published 3365m value.

[18]  Macizo Nevado:  SRTM indicates 2250m is too high.

[19]  Anexo:  This region along the border has several peaks that may be the highest point.  We have derived an estimate of 2480m for Cerro Anexo from SRTM. A possible contender is a 2473m spot elevation on the IGM 1:50,000 maps at 42º07'15" 72º03'48". On commercial publications, Dos Picos is given as highest.  The Soviet maps give a 2515m elevation for Dos Picos, but this is not supported by SRTM.

21]  Queulat: SRTM indicates that the often cited 2555m is probably too high given that the summit is broad. 

[24]  Ladrillero:  Our elevation estimate derives from SRTM.  Road maps variously give 1685m and 1665m,

[25]  Roma is the name given the west top of Cerro Bertrand (whose other summit is on the border) according to Buscaini, 1990.

[26]  Cerro Meson: 3/19/2011 - Cerro Meson has been added to this ultras list, and nearby Cerro Mojano has been removed, due to better data as a result of Aster GDEM analysis.

[31]  Cerro Norte: 3/19/2011, the summit elevation has been downgraded from 2950m to 2730m, based on research with Aster GDEM. [39]  Aguja Sur:  The SRTM is marginally incompatible with the 2268m elevation.

[52]  Monte Burney: This is a heavily eroded volcanic cone with several possible contenders for highpoint.  The Chilean IGM 1:100,000 map gives an elevation of 1495m.  Other sources give elevations in the 1720m-1768m range, which is not supported by SRTM.  The above estimate derives from SRTM, but it should be noted that both the topographic map and SRTM have substantial voids.

[E1]  Las Piramides is a long line of summits, the estimate of 2440m is based on SRTM in concurrence with Biggar.  The published elevation of the HP is 2653m (213m higher) which if true would make this an ultra by a comfortable margin.