The question that floated in my head was not whether to travel or not haha, but where to start. So after the Aconcagua season back in 2019 I decided on Ecuador, beforehand I thought it was a country that has everything and I really wasn’t wrong. Everything close, and you move quickly from the mountain to the jungle and to the beach in a “blink”, tremendous!
As always “carabiner head” I thought first of the mountain. I organized the acclimatization and what better way to start it than in Quito which is at 2800 meters above sea level. Touring the historic center and its square, the basilica of the national vote, its parks, the property and monument of the middle of the world, enjoying the gastronomy and the views in the Guápulo neighborhood. Something that caught my attention was the visit to the Capilla del Hombre Museum by the artist Guayasamín, highly recommended, impressive!
After several days of enjoying the city, it was time for the first sports objective: the RucoPichincha hill of 4696 meters above sea level; Although you get quite close with the cable car, it added a lot to the acclimatization process and has unbeatable views of Quito and its surroundings.
In order for the “corporeal” to continue to adapt to the altitude, I decided to climb two more hills without technical difficulty. So I moved to El Chaupi south of Quito and climbed Cerro Corazón 4790 masl and Iliniza Norte 5126 masl. From its summits I had tremendous views of Cotopaxi and I already wanted to climb the snow-capped volcanoes.
In Aconcagua I had met two great mountain guides Juliana García and Ramiro Garrido, we had shared work and guided on a beautiful summit on the roof of America, so when I decided on Ecuador I did not hesitate to ask them how to manage in that beautiful country. That’s how they advised me on everything, and not only that, but Juliana just had a guide to Cotopaxi 5897 masl </ strong> with a single passenger, so she invited me to be part of that ascent; In one morning and at full speed I put together the backpack and that same afternoon we are already acclimatizing inside the Cotopaxi National Park. That same night we moved by truck (listening to reggeaton haha) to the starting point of the ascent. We went up a few meters and to get on the glacier we roped up. It was a cold hit, there was a humid wind that made itself felt, we still reached the summit and went down happily for a few beers.
As soon as I got off the “coto” Juliana told me that she was going to give a course at the Cayambe Refuge, that if I wanted I could join her and that Alejo Assati, another Ecuadorian guide (who also knew Aconcagua) wanted to go up the Cayambe 5790 masl. Imagine that I answered … “I’m going” if where I sign up haha. So with Alejo we share an ascent closed by the clouds sailing between the cracks of the glacier, but finally the summit and again going down to celebrate.
Before the roof of Ecuador I decided to visit and relax in the city of Baños, and what a good choice. Canyoning, trekking, swings in the sky, bicycle descents, Tibetan bridges, waterfalls, zip lines, many toasts … in short, a few days with everything!
And from Baños I decided to go a little further east to get to know something about the Ecuadorian jungle. In El Tena again, a little bit of everything: rafting, rivers, waterfalls, trekking through the jungle, we even ate chontacuro (roasted worms) haha
He wanted to go back to the mountain and climb the largest in the area; but first the sea tempted me haha so I went to Montañitas for a few days. There I tried surfing, I was able to enjoy a few seconds of balance on the board in each attempt, so two days of many waves and boards passed and I tried the activity, I loved it (I need practice, yes ha). With some French friends I had made, we decided to go to Isla de la Plata, what a beauty: whale watching, snorkeling, and a tour of the island seeing the blue-footed boobies, all amazing. I went a little north along the coast and found Cannoas, a beautiful beach: sunsets, yoga, walks from end to end on the sand.
With the goal of Chimborazo, I had already gained good acclimatization on the other hills, but I had spent several days on the beach, so I decided to meet the altitude again in a more friendly way and went to Otavalo< /strong>. There, at 2,500 meters above sea level, I toured the market, visited its lagoons by bicycle and made good friends.
Now yes! Let’s go to the big one, I said. And I organized the team for the last hit in Ecuador. For this objective I couldn’t get a roped partner, so I decided to do the ascent alone, a bit of a gamble but that’s where I went. I took the “bondi” that was left for me at the door of the Chimborazo Reserve, the only thing that I got off at 9 at night and there was no one in the offices haha everything closed, so I got ready to bivouac