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Cotopaxi summit with acclimatization, 5 volcanoes in 7 days (Ecuador)

Climb 5 different and impressive volcanoes in 7 days, including Cotopaxi, guided by Fernando, an ASEGUIM mountain leader, and his team. Let him share with you his passion for mountaineering and his love for Ecuador.

Private

Andes

7 Days

Jan, Feb, Jun, Jul, Aug, Dec

Fit

Intermediate


Highlights

  • Reach the summit of 5 volcanoes in 7 days with an expert guide.
  • Discover the unrivalled beauty of Cotopaxi, along with its incredible views.

Description

Follow me on this mountaineering adventure to the summit of some of the most impressive volcanoes on Earth! Explore Cotopaxi, Pasochoa, Corazón, Illiniza Norte and the Quilotoa Lagoon on this 7 days journey.

Each one of the volcanoes we’ll visit has their own personality and wonderful sceneries. So each day, we will live a completely different adventure.

To reach Pasochoa we’ll drive through the Avenue of the Volcanoes, a scenic route that crosses the ecuadorian mountain range. Then, our next goal will be the summit of Corazón, which translates to heart in english. Corazón has two summits, and a hill in the shape of a heart, thus its name. Also, it is home of a dazzling green turquoise lagoon. Thereupon we’ll visit the equally mesmerizing Quilotoa Lagoon, and Illiniza Norte, a stratovolcano that stands out for its beauty. Moreover, it is the perfect ascent to acclimatize for our main goal during this expedition: Cotopaxi.

Cotopaxi is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful volcanoes on Earth! It is one of the most active volcanoes as well. And it’s the second highest one in Ecuador. We’ll attempt to reach the summit departing at midnight. We will stand at the top of Cotopaxi right after sunrise, around 6:00 am. So we’ll get a hypnotizing view of the area, hard to compare.

Would you like to come with me on this journey? Request to book this trip and let me guide you to these marvellous places in Ecuador.

Looking for a shorter trip? Check this full day trek in Cotopaxi National Park.

Itinerary

Day 1: Quito 2800m - Pasochoa 4200m - El Chaupi 3300m

Around 8 am we leave Quito. After that we’ll drive through the Avenue of Volcanoes until the Pasochoa Parking Lot. Thereupon we’ll hike and ascend steep slopes to reach the summit of Pasochoa. And at the end of the day we’ll return to El Chaupi. 

Day 2: El Chaupi - Corazón Volcano 4788m

After breakfast we’ll drive to the trailhead where we’ll begin our hike, which will take us through small Andean grasslands. Later, we’ll reach a sandy scramble section that leads to the summit of Corazon. Finally, we’ll return to the hostel for dinner and to rest. 

Day 3: El Chaupi - Nuevos Horizontes Refuge 4700m

Early morning, after breakfast, we’ll head towards the Nuevo Horizontes mountain hut, located between Illiniza Norte and Sur. The ascent to the hut will help us acclimatize for our next target: Illiniza Norte.

Day 4: El Chaupi 3300 m - Iliniza North 5126m

Once more we’ll start our day early. After a light breakfast we’ll pack up and head towards Illiniza Norte. Upon arrival to the top, we’ll descend and trek towards El Chaupi.

Day 5: El Chaupi 3300 m - Quilotoa Lagoon 3914m

We’ll leave from El Chaupi in the morning. Then we’ll drive towards the Quilotoa Lagoon. On the way there, we’ll stop at the Tigua community. Then, we’ll reach a viewpoint to observe the crater and its lagoon. Thereupon we’ll descend to the lagoon. Finally, after lunch, we’ll return to El Chaupi.

Day 6: El Chaupi - Refugio Jose Ribas 4862m

We will depart from El Chaupi, driving through the Avenue of Volcanoes until we reach the Cotopaxi National Park entrance. From here will drive east to the Cotopaxi parking lot (14,764ft/4500m) then we’ll hike for around an hour to the José Rivas Refuge (15,951 ft. / 4862 m.). We will then have dinner and rest until midnight. At this point we will pack our belongings and get ready to make our final ascent.

Day 7: Refugio - Summit Cotopaxi 5897 m – Quito

At midnight we’ll leave to the summit of Cotopaxi, having breakfast on the way.  At the entrance of the glacier, your guide will explain all necessary tips needed for using crampons and ice axe if needed. After 6-8 hours we’ll reach the top. Then we’ll begin our descent, back to the refuge and the parking lot, where our private transportation will be waiting to drive us back to Quito.

 

Details

Accommodation

Mountain refuges and hostels.

Meeting point

Quito

About the guide

ASEGUIM Guide from Ecuador.

I was born and raised in Cotopaxi Province – Ecuador and know the country’s peaks intimately. I have great mountaineering experience of more than 12 years of climbing in all Ecuador, and I also climbed in South America, Switzerland, and France.

I manage a guiding company, so sometimes I'm the one guiding the trips, but sometimes I'm focused on company management, and one of the certified guides of my team will be guiding you. All the guides with whom I work are professional and certified guides.

I worked for the Nuevos Horizontes refuge on Ilinizas Volcano from a young age and have professional Guide Training, and I am officially Licensed as a Nature guide organized by the Ministry of tourism.

Some of the guiding courses I attended are:

* Mountain Guides Course by ASEGUIM (Ecuadorian Association of Mountain Guides),
* Mountain Guides Evaluation by ENSA (Ecole Nationale de Ski et d'Alpinisme) in October 2006. An event organized by the Ministry of Tourism of Ecuador and ENSA of France
* Pre-Course UIAGM an event organized by ASEGUIM and ENSA (Ecole Nationale de Ski et d'Alpinisme)
* First Aids course, Ecuadorian Red Cross

I live and manage a hostel and lodge in El Chaupi, a beautiful mountain village an hour south of Quito, just in between Illinizas Ecological Reserve and Cotopaxi National Park. It looks like a typical Swiss town in the Alps, and has everything to become a great mountaineering center, the ‘Chamonix or Zermatt of South America’!

I speak fluent Spanish, English, and little German, French, Hebrew, and Quichua.

The guiding team I lead is committed and experienced. Contact me to help you organize an unforgettable adventure.

Languages

German | French | English

Certificates

ASEGUIM

Residence

El Chaupi


What people are saying about Fernando Iza

Lauren Kuklenski

5.00

August, 2022

Great experience. We did Rumiñawi, corázon, and Illiniza Norte as acclimatization hikes. All of them were beautiful. We attempted Cotopaxi but had a snow storm and heavy winds during the night of the summit and we were forced to turn around. The 3 initial climbs prepared us well for Cotopaxi and the altitude. There were some technical scrambling portions on corazon and Illiniza which were very cool. Overall would highly recommend!

Benjamin Stewart

5.00

June, 2022

Fernando was a fantastic guide who got me to the summit despite extremely difficult weather conditions! I would highly recommend him to anyone hoping to climb Ecuador's big peaks.

Kirsten Yehl

5.00

September, 2021

Fernando was an outstanding guide. We (my 16 yo son and I) spent a week with Fernando and did 3 acclimatization hikes and a successful Cotopaxi climb. All were amazing. On the last two, Illiniza Norte and Cotopaxi, Fernando was very attentive to safety. He also read and understood our strengths and weaknesses after the first few hikes and used that insight to guide us up the mountain. We stayed most nights at Fernando’s hostel, it was very comfortable, a great experience. His family is lovely and the meals were delicious. Was an unforgettable experience and we truly appreciate Fernando, both his guidance and hospitality.

Jan Zehnder

2.00

July, 2021

Even though Fernando is a fun and an experienced guide, I can't give him more than two stars. I was quite sick for the first three days so I could not keep up my normal pace. On my first hike I even had really bad balance disorders. This did not bother Fernando at all. Most of the time he was walking very far ahead. While descending he suddenly started walking so fast that I even lost him out of sight. I found him 2km later lying in the grass on his phone. I passed him and he just kept on being on his phone without even bothering about my medical situation. Beside his impatience the second thing is, that Fernando is always on his phone. I felt a lot better on my last day so we went on climbing Cotopaxi. He promised us a glacier school (since I've never used these tools before) but then at the refugee he just said that it's learning by doing. So when I tried to put on the crampons in the middle of the freezing night it of course took me a while. He didn't even bother to help, so my friend had to put on my crampons for me. Instead he just kept on walking. This repeated itself at our descent. I found him 20 minutes later sitting in the hut already. The only reason I decided not to give one star is his lovely wife. She is an excellent cook and kept the house clean and tidy.

Pavel Janecek

4.00

June, 2021

The traveller did not leave a comment.

Adam Burrage

5.00

December, 2019

Great experience climbing with Fernando: Well organised and we made the summit with him on Chimborazo. I'd recommend him for guiding in Ecuador.

Dick Fields

5.00

December, 2019

The traveller did not leave a comment.

Barbara Matter

5.00

July, 2019

The traveller did not leave a comment.

The Reality Twister

5.00

March, 2019

Fernando is an excellent and knowledgeable guide, and the itinerary is a nice balance of climbs and recovery time, including time to explore a couple of cities. He also made sure we were well-equipped for the climbs. The guides are geared more toward getting you up and down than toward building any technique. It's not billed as an instructional course, so that's not a complaint -- just pointing it out for those who like to use one experience to build to another rather than just reach the summit.

Chase Taylor

4.00

March, 2019

The traveller did not leave a comment.

Bryan McBride

5.00

July, 2018

Fernando was a wonderful guide. Even though we didn't make it to the top we had a great experience. We plan to return in the future and make it to the top! We hope to have Fernando guide us again.

Mike Burkus

5.00

July, 2018

Fernando is a wonderful guide who understands the Cotopaxi route well. I recommend the climb for anyone looking for a tough mental and physical challenge.

Gareth Treharne

5.00

June, 2018

The traveller did not leave a comment.

Lara Pedrini

5.00

May, 2018

Fernando is an incredible guide. He is very experienced and has extensive knowledge of the area. He will always make sure you are safe and comfortable. I highly recommend Fernando to anyone wishing to explore/hike/live/breathe the area. What an incredible experience!

Luis E Valdes

5.00

February, 2018

It was a great experience. Everything was very well arranged and taken care of. The guide (Fernando Iza) was extremely professional, safe, and friendly. I was very happy about everything, and would recommend booking with Fernando Iza for any hiking trip on Ecuador.

Marcela Hronesova

5.00

January, 2018

The traveller did not leave a comment.


Prices per person

Group of 1

USD 1949 Each

Group of 2

USD 1026 Each

Want a different number of travellers?

Price includes

- Guiding fee

- Accommodation included

- Transport during the trip

- Breakfast

- Lunch

- Dinner

Price details

The price includes: the fee of an ecuadorian qualified and experienced local Mountain Guide (ASEGUIM/UIAGM) ratio 2 climbers -1 guide; registration in the System SIB (System Information of Biodiversity); Technical mountain gear (mountaineering Boots, crampons, ice axe, harness, helmet); private transportation and transfers to Cotopaxi National Park; 4 nights accommodation at the Andes Alpes café; 1 night accommodation at the Cotopaxi Refuge Jose Rivas; all meals during the hikes and climbs. The price does not include: personal mountain gear (warm cloths, sleeping bags, sunglasses, head lamp, etc.); international flight tickets; accommodation in Quito, tips, insurance of any kind Travel accident and health insurance, luggage insurance and trip cancellation; other non-specified expenses.




 

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