Technical Climbing in the Volcanoes

Technical Climbing in the Volcanoes

Technical Climbing in the Volcanoes



16D / 15N

Tipo de tour


Altitud del tour

5500 M

Tamaño de grupo

2 a 10 personas.


Ecuador’s famous ​“Avenue of the Volcanoes” offers some of the finest beginner to intermediate guided moun­taineer­ing in the Andes, set amid a fascinating cultural backdrop. The combination of challenging volcano climbs, charming haciendas, amazing food, and great  guides makes this one of our most enjoyable adventures and one of the best introductions to high altitude mountaineering for advanced beginners and a challenging trip for seasoned mountaineers as well.

Technical climbing in the volcanoes Illiniza, Cayambe, Altar and Chimborazo.

Illiniza, Altar and Chimborazo are the most important peaks of Ecuador with very technical and challenging ascent routes.

During these days of guided expedition you have to use all your ice climbing skills on Illiniza South’s ice walls. Then, you will climb the Altar, one of the most technical peaks of the northern Andes. Finally, the trip ends with an ascent of Chimborazo‘s frost wall.

This climbing expedition towards the summits of Illiniza, Altar and Chimborazo will be carefully progressive. That’s why we’ll start with some acclimatization climbs.

Difficulty: PD

Duration: 16 days

Season: October to march

Tour Program


Day 01
TRAVEL DAY • 9,350' | 2,800M
Upon your arrival in Quito, a taxi ride takes you to our hotel. Overnight at hotel in Quito.
Day 02
EXPLORE QUITO • 9,350' | 2,800M
The day is spent exploring Colonial Quito. We start by heading northwest out of Quito to arrive at Mitad del Mundo (The Middle of the World). Here we visit that Intinan Museum and experience the Coriolis Effect firsthand. After attempting to balance an egg on a nail, we explore the Museum's exhibits on the first peoples of Ecuador. We return to Quito for a walking tour of Old Town. We visit at El Panecillo, a sculpture of Quito's Madonna, and take in the breathtaking 360 degree views of the city of Quito, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We continue our tour of the colonial architecture and streets such as the Calle La Ronda, Carondelet Palace, Independence Square, church of La Compania (1605), and the church and monastery of San Francisco (1535). There is time in the afternoon to relax and explore.
Day 03
ACCLIMATIZE RUCU PICHINCHA (15,696' | 4,784M) • 9,350' | 2,800M
After breakfast we take a short drive from Quito to the teleferico (gondola) which will carry us to approximately 13,500'. From there we stretch our legs and lungs with an acclimatization hike on Rucu Pichincha.  The hike is beautiful, with views of Quito and most of the snow covered volcanoes in Ecuador, including Cotopaxi and Cayambe.  We return to the hotel and the afternoon is free to explore the city and organize our gear for our departure from Quito the following morning.
Day 04
Early in the morning we’ll drive to the Illiniza Ecological Reserve. By the afternoon we will arrive at the trail-head. And after a 3-hour climb we are in the Nuevos Horizontes mountain Hut. It is located between Illiniza’s South and North peaks.
Day 05
SUMMIT DAY ILLINIZA SUR (17,267' | 5,263M) • 11,400' | 3,475M
With an early alpine start, we set off for the summit of Illiniza Sur. Climbing a series of steep, glaciated ramps leads us to the summit in four to six hours. Round trip time will range from six to eight hours. We return to the hut and transfer to Quito, where we spend the night.
Day 06
Rest day in Quito.
Day 07
We visit the Otavalo Market to experience the local culture, purchase fresh snacks and souvenirs. In the afternoon, we drive to the hut at the base of Cayambe.
Day 08
SUMMIT DAY CAYAMBE (18,997' | 5,790M) • 8,960' | 2,730M
With an early alpine start for the summit, our route begins by climbing through some low rock outcroppings before stepping onto a spectacularly crevassed glacier. Once on the glacier, the route climbs directly to the upper reaches of the mountain, where a challenging final push to the summit awaits us. We return to Quito where we spend the night.
Day 09
Day 10
Early in the morning we will move to Boca Toma Village. Here and with the help of mules we’ll hike about 5 hours through the paramo highlands. The final 2-hour ascent will lead us to the Italian Camp (4,550 m) where we’ll sleep.
Day 11
We start our ascent to El Altar at 3:00 a.m. It will take us about 9 hours to reach the summit of El Obispo. We will climb the steep snow and ice to the upper glacier. Then we follow a narrow gully of steep ice up to an exposed notch in the summit crest. Here we begin a steep and technically demanding rocky wall. On our way down, we will try to reach the Italian Camp. If we can’t, we will set up a high altitude bivouac.
Day 12
We will hike with the help of mules during the final stretch. Then spend a rest day in Riobamba.
Day 13
A travel drive takes us to the Carrel Hut where we grab our packs and gear and begin a two and a half hour walk to our high camp, Stübel Camp. Once at high camp we spend time preparing for our summit attempt.
Day 14
SUMMIT DAY CHIMBORAZO (20,703' | 6,310M) • 13,123' | 4,000M
With an early alpine start for the summit, our route climbs towards the west-northwest to reach the base of a rock formation called "El Castillo" (The Castle). The route continues along the western ridge until we reach the Veintimilla summit. With the technical challenges behind us, we continue to the main summit. After enjoying the views, we begin our descent to high camp.  then descent to the parking lot and transfer to Baños.
Day 15
During this day, we’ll have a city tour around Baños. We’ll go to Pailon del Diablo waterfalls and spend the night in a hotel.
Day 16
Drive to Quito.

Enquire Now!

Do you have questions about the tour? Contact us



Related tours. . .

6310 M
12D / 11N
Skiing opportunities in Ecuador are limited to ski ascents of the countries four highest peaks, which are all volcanoes, Chimborazo, Cotopaxi, Cayambe....
5500 M
11D / 10N
Ecuador’s famous ​“Avenue of the Volcanoes” offers some of the finest beginner to intermediate guided moun­taineer­ing in the Andes, set amid a...