12 Days Avenue Of Volcanos Expedition Cayambe And Cotopaxi

``Avenue of Volcanoes`` which runs along 325 km along the Inter-Andean valley between the major mountain ranges, is one of the most remarkable natural features in Ecuador. Massive and standing alone, more than fifteen majestic snowcapped and rocky volcanoes over 13.120 ft / 4.000 m to 20.600 ft / 6.300 m of height, provide mountaineers a rare opportunity to achieve very high altitudes without technical difficulty.

If you are passionate for hiking and mountaineering, this expedition will be and amazing experience, you will always remember! Besides the experience of climbing two of the highest peaks CAYAMBE and COTOPAXI and some other amazing volcanoes of Ecuador, you will also know the Andean cultural richness reflected in the colorful indigenous markets, beautiful colonial towns, old haciendas and the Andean farming lands.

CAYAMBE with 18.996 ft / 5.790 m of height, is a beautiful active volcano, and the highest point on the equator line that splits the Earth into Northern and Southern Hemispheres. This beautiful mountain is located inside of the Cayambe-Coca National Park in the western Andes of Ecuador, 60 km / 37 mi north of Quito.  It is the third highest elevation in Ecuador and due to the required skills and technical levels, it is ideal for start the reach the tallest peaks of the country.

COTOPAXI volcano with 5.897 m / 19.347 ft of height is the second tallest mountain in Ecuador and lies two hours south of Quito inside of the Cotopaxi National Park.  It is one of the most visited natural attractions because of its unique, beautiful shape and the gorgeous surrounding Andean landscapes.  It is without a doubt, the most climbed mountain in Ecuador by mountaineers from around the world.

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Days of Tour 12
Summits

Fuya Fuya 13.780 ft / 4.200 m

Imbabura 15.200 ft / 4.630 m

Northern Illiniza 16.818 ft / 5.126 m

Cayambe Volcano 18.996 ft / 5.790 m

Cotopaxi Volcano 19.347 ft / 5.897 m

Fitness Level Very difficult
Technical Level Intermediate

ITINERARY

Day 1: Welcome to Ecuador!

We will pick you up from airport and transfer to the hotel in Quito.

Day 2: Quito City Tour (9.350 ft / 2.850 m)

Early in the morning, our guide will met you at the hotel to check details of the program, help you prepare everything and buy any other supplies that you may still need.

Then we will start our acclimatization process walking around downtown, having city tour through the colonial part of the city, which is the largest and best preserved colonial downtown of America. This relic was declared by UNESCO as the first Cultural Heritage of Mankind in 1978 and is undoubtedly a place you should not miss visiting in Ecuador.

After lunch, we will drive to Teleférico of Pichincha, a rocky giant volcano that stands in front of Quito. There we will take the cable car that take us to the mountain’s moor at 13.100 ft / 4.000 m, which offers a spectacular view of Quito and the surrounding volcanoes. (B/L/D)

Day 3: Cuicocha Hike (10.500 ft / 3.200 m)

We will start our acclimatization process with hike around Cuicocha lake, located at 10.170 ft / 3.100 m in Imbabura Province two hours north of Quito.

This is a short but beautiful hike in one of the most gorgeous places of Imbabura, also known as the Lakes Province. Cuicocha lake, is the ancient crater of Cotacachi Volcano, the highest point of Cotacachi Cayapas Ecological Reserve. The hike travel along the surrounding crater edge that shelters the lake, as well as the Yerovi and Wolf volcanic domes at the base of the extinct volcano summit placed at 16.220 ft / 4.944 m.

Once we finish the hike, we will visit Otavalo and the Ponchos Plaza, the largest artisans market in Latin America known for wonderful handmade arts and crafts. (B/L/D)

Day 4: Fuya Fuya (14.000 ft / 4.270 m)

Fuya Fuya located 15 km from Otavalo, is the highest peak remaining of the ancient caldera of Mojanda volcano. The hike to the summit is starts at 12.140 ft / 3.700 m at the shore of the beautiful Mojanda lake.

After two hours of hike, we will reach the summit and enjoy an incomparable view of this amazing place, its lake and the surrounding volcanoes such as Cotacachi, Imbabura and Cayambe.  (B/L/D)

Day 5: Imbabura (15.682 ft / 4.780 m)

Continuing our acclimatization and training process, this day will ascend Imbabura volcano, which is traditionally considered by indigenous people of the area as a sacred mountain.  We will drive to the east side of the mountain to start the hike to its summit, which takes about four to five hours depending on the pace. At the beginning, there is a steep moor section before reach the rock ridge that take us to the northern summit of its crater. After enjoy this second summit we will hike down 3 hours and drive back to Quito to rest.  (B/BL/D)

Day 6: Northern Illiniza (16.818 ft / 5.126 m)

This day, we are ready to make our first climb over 16.500 ft / 5.000 m! The Illinizas are two peaks left by the original volcano located within the Illiniza Ecological Reserve.  Northern Illiniza, is beautiful rocky mountain of 16.818 ft / 5.126 m that offers the opportunity to reach this height without much technical difficulties.

We will start the ascend hike at 12.800 ft / 3.900 m by a steep sand ridge until get the Nuevos Horizontes hut in between the two peaks at 15.400 ft / 4.700 m. After a break, we will start the final climb with some easy scramble rock passages that will take us to the summit! (B/BL/D)

Day 7: Cayambe Glacier Practices (15.400 ft / 4.700 m)

We will drive two hours from Quito to Cayambe-Coca National Park and settle-in at Oleas Berge hut at 4.600 m / 15.100 ft. Then we will get ready for practice basic techniques for glaciers travel.

In the afternoon, we will return to the hut to prepare equipment and rest for a while. Early dinner at 18:00 and sleep time, since we will wake up at midnight to attempt the summit! (B/BL/D)

Day 8: Cayambe Summit (18.996 ft / 5.790 m)

We will wake-up at midnight, dress up and have breakfast. The ascent hike start around 1:00 and takes approximately 6-7 hours to get the summit depending on the pace. After enjoy the summit for a while start the descent that takes about 3 hours.

Once in the hut, we will have time to have a nap and then pack up everything to travel to Quito. On the way to Quito, we will have a well deserve lunch in Cayambe to celebrate!.  (B/BL/L)

Day 9: Quito (rest day)

We will have a day of rest in Quito to be able to rest and recover forces for the final and goal… Cotopaxi volcano! (B)

Day 10: Cotopaxi Hut (15.700 ft / 4.800 m)

Another great day! After a day of rest and well recovered, we will drive to Cotopaxi National Park and hike 45 minutes to José Ribas hut at 4,800 m/15,748 ft and settle-in, prepare equipment and rest for a while. Early dinner at 18:00 and sleep time, since we will wake up at midnight to attempt the summit! (BL/D)

Day 11: Cotopaxi Summit (19.347 ft / 5.897 m)

We will wake-up at midnight, dress up and have breakfast. The ascent hike start around 1:00 and takes approximately 6-7 hours to get the summit depending on the pace. After enjoy the summit for a while start the descent that takes about 3 hours.

Once in the hut, we will have time to have a nap and then pack up everything and start the hike down to take the car. On the way back to Quito, we will have a well deserve farewell meal and some beers to celebrate end of the AVENUE OF VOLCANOES EXPEDITION!  (B/BL/L)

Day 12: Extension program or transfer out

If you don’t have any extension to another trip in Ecuador, we will take you to the airport.

INFORMATION YOU SHOULD KNOW!

  • Quito City Tour
  • Panoramic view of “The Avenue of Volcanoes”
  • Cuicocha Lake (Cotacachi Cayapas Ecological Reseve)
  • Mojanda Volcano and lake
  • Imbabura Volcano
  • Illinizas Volcanoes (Illinizas Ecological Reserve)
  • Cayambe Volcano (Cayambe National Park)
  • Cotopaxi Volcano (Cotopaxi National Park)
  • Andean communities and towns
  • Andean farming life
  • Flora and fauna of moorlands
  • Airport transfers
  • Transportation for the entire program
  • Bilingual certified ASEGUIM guides
  • Meals: (B) breakfast, (BL) box lunch, (L) lunch, (D) dinner
  • Safe drinking water during the whole program
  • Accommodation in huts and hotels during the whole program
  • Permits and park fees
  • Climbing gear: helmet, mountaineering boots, crampons, ice axe, rope and carabineers
  • Flight tickets
  • Travel Insurance
  • Extra sports and alcoholic drinks
  • Personal expenses
  • Tips

REQUIRED

  • Day backpack for the acclimatization hikes (20 L)
  • Comfortable backpack for the climbs and hikes to huts (30-40 L)
  • Comfortable, warm clothing (1st and 2nd layers)
  • Rain jacket and rain pants (3rd layer)
  • Winter hat and/or face mask
  • Thermal and waterproof gloves
  • Liners and thermal socks (1st and 2nd layers)
  • Cap, sunglasses and sun screen
  • Hiking boots
  • Headlamp with extra batteries
  • Personal grooming kit
  • Sleeping bag
  • Change of clothes and shoes
  • Bottles or thermos to refill water

RECOMMENDED

  • Camera
  • Gaiters
  • Trekking poles
  • Personal first aid kit and medicines
  • Extra thermal gloves
  • Comfortable backpack for the climbs (30 L)
  • Comfortable, warm clothing (1st and 2nd layers)
  • Rain jacket and rain pants (3rd layer)
  • Winter hat and/or face mask
  • Thermal and waterproof gloves
  • Liners and thermal socks (1st and 2nd layers)
  • Brimmed hat, sunglasses and sun screen
  • Hiking boots
  • Gaiters
  • Headlamp with extra batteries
  • Personal hygiene kit
  • Sleeping bag
  • Change of clothes and shoes
  • Camera
12 DAYS AVENUE OF VOLCANOES CAYAMBE & COTOPAXI
DAY ACTIVITY HIKING TIME FITNESS LEVEL SKILL LEVEL  HIGHEST ELEVATION LOWEST ELEVATION
1 ARRIVAL
2 QUITO CITY TOUR
3 Cuicocha lake 5 hrs easy novice 10.500 ft / 3.200 m 10.170 ft / 3.100 m
4 Fuya Fuya summit 4 hrs easy novice 14.000 ft / 4.270 m 12.140 ft / 3.700 m
5 Corazon summit 7 hrs moderate beginner  15.682 ft / 4.780 m 12.140 ft / 3.700 m 
6 Northern Illiniza 8 hrs difficult beginner  16.818 ft / 5.126 m 12.800 ft / 3.900 m
7 Cayambe Glacier  4 hrs moderate intermediate 15.100 ft / 4.600 m 15.100 ft / 4.600 m
8 Cayambe Summit 10 hrs very difficult intermediate 18.996 ft / 5.790 m 15.100 ft / 4.600 m
9 QUITO REST DAY
10 Cotopaxi Hut 45 min moderate beginner 15.750 ft / 4.800 m  15.100 ft / 4.600 m
11 Cotopaxi Summit 10 hrs very difficult intermediate 19.347 ft / 5.897 m 15.750 ft / 4.800 m 
12 DEPERTURE
TOTAL 49 hrs very difficult intermediate  19.347 ft / 5.897 m 10.170 ft / 3.100 m
12D AVENUE OF VOLCANOES CAYAMBE & COTOPAXI
4P or more 2P – 3P 1P
$3490 $3990 $5990

TOUR GALLERY

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