Cotopaxi (19,348’), one of the most active volcanoes of the world. one of the country’s most famous peaks. Our climb brings us up Cotopaxi’s massive glaciers and through its fields of crevasses to the summit perched along the airy volcanic rim.
Cotopaxi and offer superb alpine climbing for intermediate climbers. the climbs involve moderately steep slopes and prior knowledge of roped travel, crampon techniques, and ice axe arrest is recommended; a review of these basic mountaineering techniques is built into the itinerary. This climb is ideal for mountaineers looking to build their climbing skills, climb to new elevations, and take part in the excitement of an international climbing expedition.
If you arrive Quito in the morning, in the afternoon City tour in Quito’s colonial old town, including museums and churches (aprox. 4 hours).. Overnight in the hotel.
Day 02: acclimatization day ( tour Pasochoa 4,250m.).
We’ll leave from Quito early in the morning and will drive southeast aprox. 2 hours through the Andean highlands until getting to the trail head (10,827ft/3.300m). The hike goes through an amazing primary Andean forest, great for bird watching, as we will arrive on the summit (13,778ft/4.230m) and if the weather allows, we’ll be able to see the surrounding snow capped mountains, such as Antisana, Cayambe, Illinizas, Cotopaxi and Chimborazo far away to the south in clear days. It will take us aprox. 6 hours the round hike. Return to Quito by late afternoon. Overnight in the hotel.
Day 03: Quito – Jose Rivas refugee 4,800m.
We’ll leave from Quito (9,186ft/2.800m) early in the morning (8h00) and will drive south through the Avenue of the Volcanoes until getting to the Cotopaxi National Park entrance. From here will drive east to the Cotopaxi parking lot (14,764ft/4.500m) from “Limpiopungo” camping area, then we’ll hike up for another hour to the Jose Rivas Refuge (15,748ft/4.800m). Once at the refuge we will store our belongings in safe lockers. Lunch will be served soon after.
In the afternoon we’ll head up to the glacier for ice practices and training (2 hours approx). We’ll learn some basic techniques which will include how to handle climbing equipment (crampons, ice axe, etc). We’ll go back to the Refuge for dinner and rest. (BL/D)
At midnight will be our wake up time and the departure to the top (19,347ft/5.897 m) will be around 1:00 a.m., before having a light breakfast and get our stuff ready for the ascent which will take us about 6 to 8 hours. Each climber will get a box lunch for the climb. Once at the summit we’ll take our time to take pictures of the crater and surroundings, and then we’ll head down back the refuge (3 to 4 hours).
Once at the refuge will pack our belongings, have lunch and go back to the parking lot where our transportation will be ready to take us back to Quito.