Tag: volcanoes

Our climbing team is having a cloudy and rainy week across Ecuador so far and we all hope that conditions will get better shortly. Starting in Guachala earlier this week the team moved up towards the hut on Cayambe. Despite a smooth start to our team’s summit attempt last night on Cayambe, the weather very quickly turned shortly after roping up and starting up the glacier. Two hours into the climb up the glaciated slopes of Cayambe the clouds appeared out of nowhere and proceeded to dump wet snow on our team.  Not long after, the sky was filled with lightning and thunder.  At this point our team quickly descended back to the hut. The weather turned on our climbers when they reached around 5,000 meters.  It dumped snow most of the night causing Jared and Andrew to be a bit delayed on the departure trying to wait for the hazardous road conditions to improve. Our team is now assessing options for Chimborazo given the weather and our maximum acclimatization height to date.

Mother Nature always gets the final say.

 

Thank-you Jared for the update and pictures!

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View from the Cayambe Hut
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Snowing hard at the Cayambe Hut!
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Today our Ecuador climbing team had a relaxing day on Quilotoa Lake, a water-filled caldera that is also the most western volcano in the Ecuadorian Andes. The day was filled with gorgeous panoramic views and blue skies as Estalin, Luke and Zack prepare for the ascent of Chimborazo tomorrow! Tonight the team will be organizing gear and preparing for the next day’s climb to our high camp on Chimborazo. On summit day, the team will begin to climb before dawn, and reach the summit of Chimborazo (20,560ft) shortly after sunrise with good weather conditions. The summit of Chimborazo is the closest point to the sun and provides climbers a spectacular mountain top view!

Estalin Suárez Valladolid continues to share his beautiful photographs shown below of this amazing journey through Ecuador! Enjoy 🙂

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Our team waiting for lunch, Luke looks hungry!

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Luke and Zack enjoying the descent!

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Luke and Zack spending time exploring near Quilotoa Lake!

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Luke and Zack taking in the beautiful country side near Chimborazo!

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Team bonding at the lodge!

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Stunning view from Quilotoa Lake, only a day of relaxation before Chimborazo!

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A short walk up to Cerro Chalata near Chimborazo lodge.

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Summit of Cerro Chalata at (4,230 m/13,874 ft)!

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The Madison Mountaineering team is preparing to depart for the highest peaks in Ecuador. At the summit of Chimborazo, we will be at the farthest point from the Earth’s surface! Located in the Andes mountain range this inactive volcano is believed to have erupted around 550AD. The Ecuador volcanoes offer a magnificent climbing on high altitude glaciated peaks. During this expedition we have ample time for technical skills review with the team. During this process our knowledgable guides will be able to share tips and mountain wisdom with the group. The volcanoes the team will be traveling to are located just outside the capital city of Quito. With Quito as our base, we ascend these Ecuadorian giants, and rest between climbs in Hacienda style lodges that provide an outstanding relaxation and dining experience. Our camps on these volcanoes are either European style mountain huts or tent camps. Reaching a altitude of over 20,000ft on Chimborazo, the views from the summit will be nothing short of spectacular! Past trips have explored to nearby Cotopaxi, yet in recent events mother nature has called and this volcano is now active. Needless to say we will be keeping our distance and monitoring the volcanoes activity.

Ecuador Volcanoes

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The Mexico Volcanoes are a great way to gain high altitude climbing experience on glaciated peaks in a relatively short time frame. Traveling in this region of Mexico is very safe, and easily accessible from the United States. Orizaba, at 18, 860’ is the third highest peak in North America. Neighboring Izta, the “sleeping lady” at 17,350’ is the seventh highest on the continent. We spend time visiting the historic city of Puebla between climbing these volcanoes, and have ample time as well for the museum of anthropology in Mexico City. The combination of rich cultural experience along with high altitude glacier climbing make this program a great value given the short time period in which we can accomplish so much. These peaks are a wonderful way to get acquainted with climbing at altitude, in preparation for a longer and more demanding climb such as Aconcagua, the Ecuador Volcanoes, or Denali.

We regularly organize custom programs for private groups. We are happy to accommodate your program dates, as well as other specific requests related to the itinerary, amenities, and group size. Please contact us to find out more about custom programs.

Day 1: Depart country of residence and arrive in Mexico City. We will pick you up at the airport and check in at our hotel in the heart of the city. After an equipment check and orientation we will enjoy a welcome dinner together at one of the many fine restaurants that serve traditional Mexican cuisine.

Day 2: We depart our hotel after breakfast, then spend a few hours in the museum of Anthropology reviewing the fascinating history of Aztec and Toltec ancient civilization before heading to the village of Amecameca, and then on to the Altzimoni hut on Izta, at 14,000’. Across the plain we can see the neighboring peak Popo.

Day 3: Today we go for an acclimatization hike from our hut to around 15,000’, enjoying a picnic style lunch on the trail with incredible views, and then return to our hut for dinner. From our hut we have a nice view of the “Paseo de Cortes” the mountain Pass that Hernando Cortes and his men crossed to fine the city of Tenochticlan.

Day 4: We climb to our high camp at 14,950’ and review proper techniques for using the ice axe, crampons, and climbing rope. After an early dinner we go to bed in preparation for an ‘alpine start.’

Day 5: We leave camp before dawn and climb to the Ayaloco glacier. From here we rope up and don crampons and ice axe, then climb snow slopes to the summit ridge, and then to the true summit of Izta. The view is amazing, and after a rest we descend to camp. We pack up our camp and continue our descent to the trail head where we drive to the City of Puebla. Here we will spend two nights in a nice hotel, touring this historical city and many fine restaurants.

Day 6: Rest day in Puebla, pack and organize gear for Orizaba.

Day 7: We depart Puebla after breakfast and drive to the village of Tlachichuca. Here we have lunch at our outfitter’s house, then transfer our gear into his 4 X 4 jeeps and begin the drive up to the Piedra Grande Hut (14,100’).

Day 8: We climb to our high camp on Orizaba and after dinner prepare for another ‘alpine start’.

Day 9: We leave before dawn, and gain the glacier where we rope up and don crampons and ice axe. From here we ascend the final 2,000’ to the summit of Orizaba, the highest volcano in North America. We descend to camp, pack up our belongings, then continue to the Piedra Grande hut where our outfitter will meet us. We drive back to Tlachichuca and then to Mexico City where we spend the night in a hotel.

Day 10: We depart Mexico for our country of residence.

Mexico Volcanoes Climb: $3,650
Deposit: $1,700

2019 Departures:
October 3-12
October 17-26

Costs Include:
• Airport pick up upon arrival
• 2 nights hotel accommodation in Mexico City and 2 nights hotel accommodation in Puebla (double occupancy)
• All group gear such as ropes, tents, cooking equipment, VHF radios, satellite phone, etc.
• All food while climbing
• Climbing permits, hut fees, Park entrance fees
• All transport in Mexico
• Mountain guides
• Porters (for carrying gear to high camps)
• Museum entrance fees

Costs Do Not Include:
• Airfare
• Personal Items
• Trip Cancellation Insurance
• Fees for early departure
• Wire transfer fees
• Option to upgrade to single room

Cancellation/Refund Policy
• There are no refunds for the deposit or balance payments for this expedition. This includes but is not limited to, expeditions that conclude without a summit or progress towards a summit for participants due to route conditions, weather, insufficient manpower, or any other factor outside the control of Madison Mountaineering. Expedition leader has the final say on the expedition conclusion and will make all best efforts within our margin of safety.
• Participants that choose to leave an active expedition for any reason are not entitled to any refunds
• Madison Mountaineering, LLC highly recommends trip cancellation insurance for all expeditions
• Due to the nature and heavy costs of government and operator permits, Madison Mountaineering must adhere to a stringent refund policy
• Deposit due with registration materials
• All balances are due 120 days prior to departure date unless otherwise specified
• Participants whose balances are not received by the 120-day deadline as stated above, risk forfeiture of their funds and their place on the expedition

Note: Madison Mountaineering, LLC reserves the right to waive any fees. As we offer personalized service, we will attempt to accommodate changes and cancellations when necessary, waiving certain fees when feasible. Deposits paid by participants acknowledge the above cancellation terms.

• Ice Axe: A mountaineering ice axe with straight shaft, generally a 60-65 cm ice axe will work well.
• Crampons: Mountaineering crampons rather than water ice climbing crampons.
• Trekking poles: Adjustable poles
• Climbing Harness: An alpine style climbing harness
• Carabineers: 2 locking
• Mountaineering boots: A double plastic or well insulated mountaineering boot with removable liners is preferable.
• Gaiters: to fit over your boots, these help keep small rocks and dirt out of your boots.
• Mountaineering Socks (3 Pair): Wool or Synthetic
• Liner Socks (3 Pair): A thin sock to be worn under the mountaineering sock to reduce friction.
• Camp booties: Optional
• Toe Warmers: Optional
• Underwear (1-2): Synthetic is best
• Long underwear pants (2-3 pair): 2 pair of lightweight and 1 pair medium or heavy weight.
• Long underwear shirts (1-2 pair): 1-2 pair of lightweight, and 1 medium or heavy weight. These should be long sleeve.
• Insulated Jacket: This can be a lightweight down or prima loft jacket, fleece jacket, or soft shell jacket.
• Hard Shell Jacket: A waterproof and breathable jacket designed to be worn in rain, snow, and high wind.
• Hard Shell Pants: A waterproof and breathable pant designed to be worn in rain, snow, and high wind. Full side zippers on each pant is preferable.
• Expedition Down Parka: A very substantial down parka with minimum 800 fill down. This can be worn over all layers.
• Insulated Pants: Prima loft or down pants, full side zippers are preferable.
• Warm Hat: Wool or fleece.
• Balaclava: to protect your neck and face.
• Buff or Bandana: To cover your face and neck, can keep out the dust.
• Sun hat: A baseball style hat or other sun hat.
• Glacier Glasses: dark lenses that wrap around
• Goggles: To be worn in high winds
• Liner Gloves: Fleece or wool
• Soft Shell Gloves: for cold and windy conditions
• Heavy Glove or Mitten: with removable liners
• Hand warmers: Optional
• Expedition Backpack: An 65 liter internal frame back pack.
• Sleeping Bag: Rated to at least -10 °F. Down is preferable over synthetic.
• Compression stuff sacks: for reducing the volume of your sleeping bag and down parka.
• Self Inflating pad: A full length air mattress
• Closed Cell foam pad: Full length is best
• Headlamp: Bring a spare set of batteries
• Cup: 16oz. minimum
• Bowl: ½ liter minimum capacity
• Spoon: Plastic (lexan)
• Sunscreen: SPF 50 or stronger
• Lip screen: SPF 30 or stronger
• Water bottles: 2 bottles with 1 liter capacity each
• Water Purification System: Tablets or Steripen
• Pee Bottle: 1 liter capacity minimum
• Pee Funnel: For Women
• Knife: Optional
• Toiletry Bag: Toothpaste, Toothbrush, baby wipes, etc.
• Hand Sanitizer: 2 small bottles
• Hand warmers / Toe warmers: 3 sets of each
• Trash Compactor bags (4): To line stuff sacks and separate gear
• Camera: lightweight with extra batteries
• Travel Clothes: For days in Mexico City & in Puebla.
• Large Duffel Bag with lock: for transporting all personal gear.
• Small duffel bag: to store items in the hotels.
• Small Personal First Aid Kit: Athletic tape, band aids, Ibuprofen, Moleskin, blister care products, personal medications, cough drops.
Medications:
  ‣ Acetazolamide (Diamox) for altitude illness
  ‣ Antibiotics such as Ciprofloxin or Azithromycin for gastro intestinal or respiratory illness
  ‣ Ibuprofen for muscle soreness
  ‣ Excedrin for headaches  ‣ Anti-nausea medications.
• Climbing Snacks:
  ‣ Electrolyte Replacement Drink Mix: Bring a supply for 6 days.
  ‣ Energy Gel: Single serving gel packs such as GU, Clifshot, Powergel, etc.)
  ‣ Energy Bars: Power bar, Cliff bar, etc.
  ‣ Candy Bars: Snickers, Mars, Twix, Milky Way, etc.

Madison Mountaineering is recognized for well thought out strategy in high altitude climbing expeditions, as well as high-quality service throughout. Because we have two decades of experience in the planning and coordination of mountaineering expeditions, our reputation is excellent. We strive to make each expedition the best possible experience for our climbers and focus on our 3 primary goals of success in reaching the summit, returning safely, and having fun!

Our guides are some of the best and most experienced in the industry, having a strong grasp of technical climbing, expedition, and high altitude experience, along with strong interpersonal skills. Our teams are small and equipped with the best support available to ensure the highest chance of success. We are renowned for our comfortable base camps, high-quality food, first-rate communications, and medical support services, all of which are overseen by a professional member of our team.

Most of our climbers have either climbed with us before, been referred by a friend who has climbed with us, or met one of our teams while attempting another peak and decided to join us for their next expedition. We work hard to facilitate safe, successful, and enjoyable expeditions for all of our climbers. Our track record and past climber testimonials prove we are not only experts in our field, but we also love what we do!

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The Ecuador Volcanoes offer fantastic climbing on high altitude glaciated peaks with wonderful accommodations along the way. The volcanoes are located just outside Quito, the capital city, making for short travel days in between climbs. Our program offers climbs on two major peaks in Ecuador: Cayambe (18,996’) and Chimborazo (20,564’), both with heavily glaciated summits. During the program, we have ample time for technical skills review. With Quito as our base, we ascend these Ecuadorian giants and rest between climbs in Hacienda style lodges that provide an outstanding relaxation and dining experience. Our camps on these volcanoes are either European style mountain huts or tent camps. The combination of these beautiful climbs with first-rate lodging throughout make this program very enjoyable!

”We had a fantastic time! Thanks for all the hard work. From the climbing to the sightseeing it was top notch. Estalin was a Superb Guide! Not only was he a skillful climbing guide he was a blast to hang out with. He also took the time to share his mountaineering expertise with us. I learned a lot about history and culture as well. The food was fantastic. He always went out of his way to show us a great time. Thanks again.”
Luke Palmatier, 2015 Ecuador Climber

”It was an amazing time start to finish. Both Jose Luis and Andrew were both helpful and fun to be around. The quality was first class with everything. It was a 10 out of 10.”
Jeff Glasbrenner, 2016 Ecuador Climber

We regularly organize custom programs for private groups. We are happy to accommodate your program dates, as well as other specific requests related to the itinerary, amenities, and group size. Please contact us if you would like to know more about custom programs.

Day 1: Depart country of residence and arrive in Quito, usually in the afternoon or evening. You will be picked up and driven to our hotel. We will conduct a brief orientation and equipment check.

Day 2: Today we “acclimatize” around Quito (9,400’) by touring the many beautiful colonial structures and historic district, stopping to enjoy lunch in one of the many outdoor cafes.

Day 3: Acclimatization hike on Pasochoa (13,860’). This is a beautiful day hike and we have lunch along the way. We return to our hotel for the evening.

Day 4: Today we depart the hotel with our gear and hike up Pichincha (15,700’). After the day hike we drive to Hacienda Guachala, located close to the town of Cayambe. We sleep in Hacienda Guachala.

Day 5: We climb the small peak of Imbabura (15,190’) and return to Hacienda Guachala for the night.

Day 6: Visit the town of Otavalo then continue to the Cayambe hut (15,250’). Overnight at the hut.

Day 7: Glacier skills on Cayambe. Overnight at the hut.

Day 8: Cayambe summit climb (18,996’) – return to Hacienda Guachala.

Day 9: Today we travel from Hacienda Guachala to the Estrella del Chimborazo lodge (13,125’). We organize our gear and prepare for the next day’s climb to our high camp.

Day 10: We depart the lodge after breakfast and hike to the Stubel Camp (16,200’) on Chimborazo.

Day 11: Summit day! We begin our climb before dawn, and reach the summit of Chimborazo (20,560’) shortly after sunrise. The summit of Chimborazo is the closest point to the sun, and we savor this spectacular mountain top view. We descend and drive back to our hotel in Quito for a celebration dinner.

Day 12: Today we depart Ecuador and fly home.

Cayambe & Chimborazo Expeditions
$3,800
Deposit: $1,800

Summer Season:
June 1-12
June 13-24
July 4-15
July 25- August 6

Winter Season:
October 31-November 11
November 18-November 29
December 12-December 23
January 2-January 13
January 24-February 4
February 13-February 24
February 20 – March 3

Costs Include:
• Airport Pick up
• 3 star hotels in Quito
• Park entrance fees
• Climbing permit fees
• Hut fees
• Hacienda lodges
• All meals while climbing
• Guide service (Ecuadorian or American)

Costs Do Not Include:
• Airfare
• Personal Items
• Meals in Quito
• Option to upgrade to single room
• Fees for early departure
• Trip cancellation insurance
• Wire transfer fee
• Airport taxes

Cancellation/Refund Policy
• There are no refunds for the deposit or balance payments for this expedition. This includes but is not limited to, expeditions that conclude without a summit or progress towards a summit for participants due to route conditions, weather, insufficient manpower, or any other factor outside the control of Madison Mountaineering. Expedition leader has the final say on the expedition conclusion and will make all best efforts within our margin of safety.
• Participants that choose to leave an active expedition for any reason are not entitled to any refunds
• Madison Mountaineering, LLC highly recommends trip cancellation insurance for all expeditions
• Due to the nature and heavy costs of government and operator permits, Madison Mountaineering must adhere to a stringent refund policy
• Deposit due with registration materials
• All balances are due 120 days prior to departure date unless otherwise specified
• Participants whose balances are not received by the 120-day deadline as stated above, risk forfeiture of their funds and their place on the expedition

Note: Madison Mountaineering, LLC reserves the right to waive any fees. As we offer personalized service, we will attempt to accommodate changes and cancellations when necessary, waiving certain fees when feasible. Deposits paid by participants acknowledge the above cancellation terms.

Ice Axe: A general mountaineering ice axe no longer than 60-65 cm.
Crampons: General mountaineering crampons
Trekking Poles: Adjustable poles for the trek to base camp
Climbing harness: An alpine climbing harness
Carabineers: 4 locking and 2 non locking
Belay / Rappel device: For rappelling or belaying climbers
Helmet: Must fit over a thick hat
Light hiking boots or trekking shoes: For hiking days, these can be worn in the lodges or mountain huts.
Mountaineering Boots: Either double plastic or insulated synthetic boots.
Socks: Minimum 3 pair thick mountaineering socks and 3 pair liner socks
Short Underwear: 1-2 pair of synthetic short underwear
Long Underwear: 1-2 pair lightweight long underwear pants and shirts. 1 pair of heavy expedition weight long underwear.
Soft Shell Jacket: A hooded jacket
Soft Shell pants: For trekking and climbing
Insulated Jacket: PrimaLoft or Down
Expedition Down Parka: A hooded down jacket with 800 minimum down fill.
Insulated Pants: PrimaLoft or Down, these should have full side zippers.
Hard Shell Jacket: To be worn in wet conditions
Hard Shell Pants: To be worn in wet conditions, these pants should have full side zippers.
Headlamp: Bring extra batteries
Warm Hat: A warm fleece or wool hat.
Balaclava: to cover your face and neck on windy days.
Sun hat: A baseball style sun camp.
Buff: To wear around your neck & face to block the wind, UV rays, dust.
Glacier Glasses: wrap around style sunglasses with dark lenses
Goggles: With dark lenses.
Soft Shell Gloves: 1 pair
Shell gloves with insulated liner: 1 pair
Expedition overmitts: With insulated removable liners
Gaiters: Full length
Expedition Backpack: A 50-65 liter internal frame back pack.
Sleeping Bag: Rated to at least -20 °F. Down is preferable over synthetic.
Compression stuff sacks: for reducing volume for your sleeping bag and down jacket.
Self Inflating pad: A full length air mattress
Closed Cell foam pad: Full length is best
Cup: 16oz. minimum
Bowl: ½ liter minimum capacity
Spoon: Plastic (lexan)
Sunscreen: 2 tubes, SPF 40 or stronger
Lip screen: 2 sticks, SPF 30 or stronger
Water bottles: 2 bottles with 1 liter capacity each
Water Purification System: Tablets or Steripen
Water Bottle Parkas: To keep your water from freezing
Pee Bottle: 1+ liter capacity
Pee Funnel: For Women
Knife: Optional
Toiletry Bag: Toothpaste, Toothbrush, baby wipes, etc.
Hand Sanitizer: 2 small bottles
Hand warmers / Toe warmers: 3 sets of each
Trash Compactor bags (4): To line stuff sacks and separate gear
Camera: lightweight with extra batteries
Travel Clothes: For days in Quito.
Large Duffel Bag with lock: for transporting all personal gear to the mountains.
Small duffel bag: to store items in the hotel
Small Personal First Aid Kit: Athletic tape, band aids, Ibuprofen, Moleskin, blister care products, personal medications, cough drops.

Medications:
• Acetazolamide (Diamox) for altitude illness
• Antibiotics such as Ciprofloxin or Azithromycin for gastro intestinal or respiratory illness
• Ibuprofen for muscle soreness
• Pepto Bismol for loose stool
• Excedrin for headaches
• Anti nausea medications.

Climbing Snacks:
• Electrolyte Replacement Drink Mix: Bring a supply for 1 week.
• Energy Gel: Single serving gel packs such as GU, Clifshot, Powergel, etc.)
• Energy Bars: Power bar, Cliff bar, etc.
• Candy Bars: Snickers, Mars, Twix, Milkey Way, etc.
• Hard Candy: 1 cup
• Crackers: 1 box

Madison Mountaineering is recognized for well thought out strategy in high altitude climbing expeditions, as well as high-quality service throughout. Because we have two decades of experience in the planning and coordination of mountaineering expeditions, our reputation is excellent. We strive to make each expedition the best possible experience for our climbers and focus on our 3 primary goals of success in reaching the summit, returning safely, and having fun!

Our guides are some of the best and most experienced in the industry, having a strong grasp of technical climbing, expedition, and high altitude experience, along with strong interpersonal skills. Our teams are small and equipped with the best support available to ensure the highest chance of success. We are renowned for our comfortable base camps, high-quality food, first-rate communications, and medical support services, all of which are overseen by a professional member of our team.

Most of our climbers have either climbed with us before, been referred by a friend who has climbed with us, or met one of our teams while attempting another peak and decided to join us for their next expedition. We work hard to facilitate safe, successful, and enjoyable expeditions for all of our climbers. Our track record and past climber testimonials prove we are not only experts in our field, but we also love what we do!

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