We propose the three following mountains to begin the "real" adventure: Antisana 5758m (18,886ft), Cotopaxi volcano 5897m (19,342ft), and Chimborazo 6310m (20,696ft), the highest mountains in Ecuador. During the 16-day itinerary, we will also train you on the glaciers so that you gain practical experience with the technical equipment a natural mountaineering environment.
Day 1: We suggest you arrive in Quito on a Friday, our team will meet you at the airport on arrival and give you an initial program orientation. Transfer in.
Day 2: The first full day in Ecuador we drive north to Otavalo, the market town just on this day get to you A very nice idea for a population Indians sales him products on the market, our visit is timed for market day because this population don't like a pictures from hems, for this reason do you need taking the picture very discrete. The Otavaleño Indians coming down from their small villages in the surrounding mountains to sell their agricultural products and weavings for the life. After a morning exploring and photographing as well and shopping time, we hike one hill above the town of Otavalo and San Pablo lake, the most big like in Ecuador and a very nice view around us, after one half hour we stop for our lunch in of one the typical restaurant.
For sure we have a typical meal from Otavalenos and of course from Ecuador cuisine, too. Afternoon. Drive back to Quito, of course before we pass and stopping briefly at the Equatorial Monument or Equatorial line, for nice memories and pictures in the latitude 00,00. After same pictures we continue driving to Quito.
Day 3: We take our acclimatization ascent on the Guagua Pichincha or Ruco Pichincha volcano at 4800m.(13,773ft) We drive from Quito for one half hour to the Cruz Loma area at 3900m(12,792ft). Quito is nestled on the slopes of this active volcano. Our primary goal here is to help each team member begin testing his or her response to higher elevation and to give our bodies a chance to get used to altitude acclimatization, we hike from the cruz Loma for a very nice paramo barley, we cross and hike a sand slope and rock climbing for short part and easy climb, too.
All this road we use for 4 hours up to arrival in the our summit, lunch rest, photos etc.! We're coming down, in 2 hours down we arrive at the park car lot, in this way if the weather conditions will be nice while enjoying the many photographic opportunities from Quito and more beautiful scenic areas! After summit we hike down to the parking lot. Afternoon drive back to Quito.
Day 4: We offer a scenic tour through Quito, a city of contrast between the Spanish colonial displays, pre-colombian art and Inca culture. We also visit the national ethnological museum, which provides a good introduction to the history of Ecuador, several of the city's most interesting colonial churches, and the busy and traditional central market. Free afternoon.
Day 5: Quito Antisana Camping. Mid-morning departure from Quito, where we'll travel to our base camp in Antisana at 4700m (15,416 ft). This is a remarkable journey, past lava flows in the country side, do you will be see this very nice and do you have idea for volcanic parasit-crater on to the Paramo area, and finally a four-wheeling romp through ancient stream beds. It is common to spot Andean eagles and condors on this trip. We will establish base camp and settle in for the night. Driving from Quito to the base camp for 4 hours.
Day 6: Antisana Glaciers School day. Wake up at 7 a.m for breakfast. We continue adjusting to altitude acclimatization. We go on the glacier at 8:30 a.m and engage in the moderate glacier section a good activity. Where well be familiarize ourselves with the various climbing techniques, equipment work for climbing. Our guide get to you on a glacier skills all of techniques necessary for climbing the high peaks like Cayambe, Cotopaxi, Chimborazo and others mountains, too. We'll be learn and practice rope-handling, glacier travel snow climbing and basic crevasse rescue skills and safety techniques. The general procedures for high peak mountains. After 6 hours training we are back to the camping and resting afternoon. Dinner, relax night.
Day 7: Antisana Resting day for the group: The guide will be opening the way up for the next morning to climbing. Of course we Prepare A good teams for a midnight departure for Antisana day summit. Early dinner and early to bed, usually by 6:30 p.m.
Day 8: Antisana Summit day. In the afternoon we drive to la Ciénega Hosteria: Wake up at midnight. Breakfast and equipment check-up. An early morning start will enable us to reach the summit by 8:00 a.m. The route is complex, offering spectacular views of Cotopaxi, Cayambe, and Chimborazo. The glacier on Antisana is very active, and the complex configuration will require us to most likely include a combination of snow and ice techniques for intermediate terrain.
In sum, this expedition to Antisana offers great adventure and high quality climbing in a unique equatorial environment, all the while skirting among gaping crevasses. After the requisite summit photos we will descend to base camp and then head to La Ciénega Hosteria, a nice relaxing countryside hacienda that will serve us as our next "base Camp". Enjoy a restful night before our Cotopaxi climbing.
Day 9: Ciénega rest Day, and or visit the very nice crater lake, called Quilotoa Krater Lake.
Day 10: Mid morning departure from la Ciénega to Cotopaxi. After one and a half hours, we head east into the Cotopaxi National Park, where our driving destination ends at the Cotopaxi car park, situated at 4203m (13,787ft.) From here we have a forty-five minute hike up with a full packs to the Jose Rivas Refuge on the flank West of Cotopaxi at 4800m (15,744ft.) After arrival at the hut, we will enjoy a hot tea and rest in the afternoon, delicious dinner and relaxing evening.
Day 11: Wake up at midnight. Breakfast and equipment check-up. We leave the refuge at 2:00 a.m. We will pass a group of uniform slopes and ice ramps of 30 and 35 degrees before reaching a glacier platform. We enjoy one of the most spectacular color displays in the Andes. From this point we see the valley below us where the morning sunrise welcomes us with incredible colors. Our route will pass under a base of rock 400 feet wide called Yanasacha. The quichua name says it all, its a black wall of impressive size. The Indians called it the route of the moon. Here we start climbing glacier slopes of 35 and 45 degrees, at the top of which we will only have a 15 minutes climb to emerge onto Ecuador's second highest summit: Volcano Cotopaxi at 5897m (19,427ft.) Our approximate climbing time will have been 7 hours. Return to the refuge around 9 or 10:00am. Rest and hike back down to the 4 x 4 where we'll return to la Ciénega.
Day 12: Depart from la Cienaga at 12:00 p.m. Drive south of Cotopaxi passing the agricultural towns of Latacunga and Ambato. Five hour drive crossing agricultural and indigenous areas where a picture or two may attract you. We will arrive at the Carrell refuge of Chimborazo at 3 or 4 in the afternoon. Dinner and sleep.
Day 13: Breakfast at 8:00 a.m. Relax mid morning, and then we take off for a forty minute walk, with full packs which will lead us up to the Whimper hut on the Chimborazo flank west situated at 5000m (16,400ft.) rest Afternoon. Dinner, supper early and early to bed (6:30 p.m).
Day 14: Chimborazo is Ecuador's highest peak and is a massive glaciated volcano that consists of five summits. Rise at midnight for breakfast and equipment check-up. Leave the hut at 1:00am. We move immediately to the huge glacier on Chimborazo's southwest face where we first traverse moderately angled ice slopes, climb through a series of ice falls and up the steep ice ramps. Climbing simultaneously on moderate grounds belaying up the steep pitches. Our team will rope together in order to cross crevasses and finally make it to the summit. This is the highest point of the Andes and from here we have a magnificent view of the emerging volcanoes that form the eastern and western Cordillera.
The mentioned volcanoes seem to emerge from the clouds below our feet. Our approximate climbing time is 8 to 9 hours. Return to the refuge around noon. Lunch and travel to Banos (6:00pm). Accommodated at a fine hotel across Ines Maria waterfall, we will enjoy the natural hot water baths, sauna Etc. Celebration Dinner, drink, Salsa dancing Etc.
Day 15: We relax in the mountain valley town of Banos, where the lush vegetation is home to an unusual variety of orchids, butterflies, and hummingbird species, visit of the zoo Etc. After lunch we drive back to Quito departing from Banos at 2:00 p.m. Arriving in Quito around 5:00 p.m.
Day 16: Departure transfer to your international flight home.
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