Guida Alpina - professionisti dell'alta quota

Chimoboraxo and Cotopaxi (Equador)

If we take the centre of the earth as a reference, the distance from the centre of the earth to the peak of Chimborazo is superior to that of Mount Everest.
Of course, Everest rises higher from sea level. However, also Chimborazo has its supremacy and deserve an ascent.


Day 1: Taking a flight from Milan, flying over the European and Atlantic coast and then landing at Quito, the capital of Ecuador. Arriving late afternoon. Transferring and settling into the hotel.

Day 2: A visit to the city of Quito, its churches and museums well worth visiting. In the afternoon we decide how we will be organizing the following days of our expedition.

Day 3: An ascent to the house of Quito mountain (Pichincha volcano 4 794mt.) to get acclimatized. Return to hotel, dinner and stay overnight.

Day 4: Off on a trip into the Cotopaxi National Park. A walk in the park to observe llama, wild horses and with a little bit of luck catch sight of a condor. After lunch we leave with transport to slightly below Cotopax Reguge. Ascend to Refuge and settle in. Seeing that a sleepless night awaits us for the ascent, we make hast to go to bed to get some sleep before we must leave.

Day 5: A little after midnight we leave for the peak. After 8 hours of ascending we reach Cotopaxi (5 897mt.). By sunrise we will be on the peak of the highest volcano in the world that is still active, and a look at the crater that is about 800mt. wide, and every now and then some smoke is expelled that makes you think that you have placed your feet on something alive. In the distance you can catch a glimpse of Chimborazo. Descent and return down to the parking passing the Refuge. We get in the vehicles and we leave Cotopaxi Park. Then a well deserved rest at the hotel.

Day 6: Rest in the morning. After lunch we leave with transport to slightly below Whymper Refuge (5 000mt.). Ascent and settle in the Whymper Refuge. Already having the experience of the ascent to Cotopaxi, making use of the time that remains before the ascent, we go get some rest by sleeping. A little before midnight we start our ascent up the highest mountain of Ecuador and the furthest from the centre of the earth, along the Whymper-Route.

Day 8: Before sunrise and before the clouds rise from the jungle, after about 8-9 hours of ascending we reach Chimborazo peak (6 310mt.). Here the splendid panorama pays us for the fatigue from the ascent. Descend to Whymper Refuge and with transport to the city of Riobamba. Stay overnight in a hotel.

Day 9: Transfer to airport and on a flight home.

Day 10: Arrive at Milan.

– For the ascents of Chiamborazo and Cotopaxi the group proceeds in a roped party and for this reason it is important to have a good ability in using the ice-axe, crampons and have the correct behaviour in a roped party from all the participants.
– Also essential is to be well prepared physically and mentally.