Ecuador is simply a great country to visit. It has everything from 20,000' glaciated peaks to the Amazon Jungle, and we will experience both! Why more Americans don't spend time in Ecuador is beyond us. On our two-week trip, we will try to sample as much of this beautiful country as possible. Our two ascents will include Cayambe (18,990') and Cotopaxi (19,347'). Chimborazo (20,561') is available as a 3-day extension for the interested and capable climber.
IMG has been leading expeditions to Ecuador since the early 80's and the contacts and relationships we've built over the years make this program unique. The climbs themselves are only a piece of the total adventure with IMG in Ecuador.
Our contacts and relationships in Ecuador make this program unique. The climbs themselves are only a piece of the total adventure experience with IMG in Ecuador. This information should answer many of your initial questions and also guide you through the next stages of preparing for the climb. Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at any time.
Time is spent in Quito before and after our ascents, exploring cathedrals and markets and sampling local cuisine. We will also visit the famous Indigenous market in Otavalo and spend time with a friend who is a weaver in the town of Peguche.
Our acclimatization schedule is interesting and includes two mountains. We hike Fuya Fuya (13,986') and Imbabura (15,190') prior to our Cayambe attempt. Additionally, we do a basic technique review on the slopes of Cayambe and spend two nights at the Oleas-Ruales-Berge Refuge prior to our climb. After our summit attempt we will drive to the jungle town of Papallacta, where we can soak in the hot springs for which this town is famous.
Cotopaxi is next, which may just be the most picturesque volcano in the world. The team will climb from the Jose F. Ribas Refuge located at 15,973'. After climbing Cotopaxi, we spend a night at the hacienda of La Cienega. We wrap up the trip with a traditional home-cooked meal and celebration at our local Ecuadorean guides home as well as a visit with famed Ecuadorian photographer and explorer, Jorge Anhalzer.
The itinerary gives us the flexibility to pull an additional day, even two, out of the schedule if needed for weather contingencies. An IMG Senior Guide leads each of these programs.
We are joined by some of the finest Ecuadorian guides. Our lead Ecuadorian guide being Romulo Cardenas. We've climbed with Romulo for over three decades. Romulo has over 300 ascents of Cotopaxi, over 100 of Cayambe and over 200 of Chimborazo. Yes, you read that correctly. All our Ecuadorian guides are dear friends, experienced guides and add immeasurably to your Ecuadorian experience.
You will see more of Ecuador than you ever imagined. Our goal is to make this trip so much more than just a mountaineering expedition.
|Day 01||Depart home for flights to Quito. Most flights arrive around midnight. A shuttle will transfer the group to our hotel in Quito.|
|Day 02||Morning tour of Old Town Quito. Depart Quito for the town of Otavalo. Lunch will be at a local restaurant on the way, where we will have a chance to sample the hardy potato soup this region is known for. In the afternoon, we will visit a local weaver in the town of Peguche. Night will be spent in Otavalo.|
|Day 03||Early morning visit to the famous Otavalo Indigenous Market. We will hike to the top of Fuya Fuya (13,986') after our market visit. We will return to Hotel Otavalo for a second night there.|
|Day 04||Acclimatization hike to the summit of Imbabura (15,109'). Transfer that afternoon to Hacienda Guachala near the town of Cayambe where we will begin to prep our climbing equipment in the evening/afternoon.|
|Day 05||Drive to the Oleas-Ruales-Berge Hut (15,902') on Cayambe. The group will spend the afternoon relaxing at the hut and discuss topics including high altitude and expedition climbing.|
|Day 06||Training day on the lower slopes of Cayambe. Review to include basic cramponing, proper use of the ice axe and roped travel. Second night spent at the hut.|
|Day 07||Summit attempt of Cayambe (18,996'). Return to the hut, pack gear and transfer to Papallacta for the night at the famed hot springs and hotel.|
|Day 08||Drive to Hacienda El Porvenir at the base of Cotopaxi; this hacienda is a great staging spot for our climb and is very close to Cotopaxi itself.|
|Day 09||The team will head to the Jose F. Ribas Refuge located near the glacial tongue of Cotopaxi. This refuge is quite new and sits at 15,970'.|
|Day 10||Summit attempt on Cotopaxi (19,347'). Return to refuge, pack up all our gear and drive onward to the Hotel Cienega, outside the city of Latacunga.|
|Day 11||Visit with Jorge Anhalzer, famed Ecuadorian explorer, climber, photographer, journalist, ultra-light pilot and old friend. Lunch of Ecuadorian dishes prepared by Romulo's wife, Patricia, at their home. Return to Quito for the night.|
|Day 12||Free day in Quito. A fun option for the group is to take the Teleferico (gondola) up to hike around Pichincha, a mountain just on the outskirts of Quito with great views of the city. Other folks may choose to visit the museum and residence of famous Ecuadorean artist Guayasamin. The team will then have a final dinner at a beautiful restaurant in town, finish up packing and transfer to the airport for flights home.|
|Day 13||Most flights to the United States depart Quito just after midnight. That's the night of Day 12/morning of Day 13. Catch connecting flights to your home and arrive home on Day 13.|
**Day 11 or 12 can be made available as a contingent day, if needed, to wait out bad weather on either climb.
|Day 13||Drive from Quito south to the Whymper Hut (15,744') on Chimborazo. Night spent there.|
|Day 14||First possible summit attempt from the hut.|
|Day 15||Summit bid of Chimborazo (20,564 feet) or weather contingency day. Late evening return to Quito. Hotel night in Quito.|
|Day 16||Early morning departure (just after midnight) from Quito to the U.S. and catch connecting flights for home.|
• IMG Guides
• Double accommodation in hotels
• Shared accommodation in refuges
• Group transportation
• Group equipment including ropes, stoves/fuel, radios, group first aid, etc…
• Meals while climbing
• Roundtrip airfare to Quito
• Meals while not climbing
• Snacks while climbing
• Personal climbing equipment from gear list
• REQUIRED Insurance: IMG requires that all trip participants purchase Travel Insurance for
international programs that includes coverage for medical evacuation, repatriation and medical
expenses for the duration of their IMG program. Trip Cancellation Insurance is strongly
recommended. Trekking and mountaineering programs are true “adventure travel.”