Chimborazo (6319m) – Highest point of Ecuador
Chimborazo is the highest peak in Ecuador and the worldÂ´s highest mountain regarded from the center of the earth & the erarthÂ´s closest point to the sun.
I am happy & proud. Climbing Chimborazo was the hardest thing I have ever done (so far:-).
12 hours non-stop: ascending and downclimbing 1300m in hight with heavy winds & temperatures well below -10 Celcius at an altitude around 6000m in knee deep snow and full gear isnÂ´t surely something most people would consider doing in their holidays…
Parque Nacional Chimborazo (entry fee is U$5 for foreigners and U$2 for Ecuadorians) is about 4 hours or some 150km south of Quito. A dirt road leads to the lower refuge 200 meters below the upper refuge at around 5000m. There are basic cooking facilities and dorm beds (U$10) available.
From there itÂ´s a steep 8 hours climb on glacier and (deep) snow to the summit. Crampons, ice-axes and ropes are a must and you should know how to use it! There is no guide required but itÂ´s up to you finding the way in the dark.
To get some decent advice have a cup of coffee (and some serious good food) @:
CafÃ© MontaÃ±a (Corner Luis Cordero E12-141 and Toledo, Tel.: 3227-567, firstname.lastname@example.org) in QuitoÂ´s New Town.
ItÂ´s the place where the local climbing community meets and there you will find all necessary (and neutral) information regarding all Ecuadorian mountains.
I climbed Chimborazo together with Juan Carlos Bastidas SÃ¡nchez (Instructor de Andinismo and also the owner of the cafÃ©).
For the two day trip (including transport, food, private guiding and about 15 years of experience) he charged U$200. If you ask nicely he might also take you out for a glacier course or trips to pretty much all other Ecuadorian summits.
He is more a climbing buddy than a guide, an “amigo”. I really enjoyed my times in the mountains with him.
All kind of gear can be hired at various places in Quito: For crampons, ice axe and gaiters it cost me U$12 for 2 days.
As you can see, high/extreme altitude DOES have effects:-)
My altimeter stats:
|01.05.2009||08:28am||2840||Quito||Departure CafÃ© MontaÃ±a|
|01.05.2009||15:66am||4815||Parque Nacional Chimborazo||Arrival at the lower refuge
|01.05.2009||16:27pm||5003||Parque Nacional Chimborazo
||Arrival at the upper refuge|
|01.05.2009||17:32pm||5143||Snow Field Chimborazo||Acclimatisation hike|
|02.05.2009||05:02am||6001||Glacier Chimborazo||My first time above the magical 6000m!!
Also see climbing [Cotopaxi (5897m].