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Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Cotopaxi or Bust.

On a clear day, this is the view of Volcan Imbabura from my walk to school.
Though Troy shared our experience climbing this beauty previously, I thought I would post some pictures. (Unfortunately I do not have any pictures of the guide crawling down backwards, though the image is forever engrained in my mind.)

At the beginning, it was nice enough outside, t-shirt weather even. But it wasn´t long before the clouds moved in and the snowy peak (yes that is snow) became more difficult to discern.

The view from the summit was that of a cloudy white-out (whch perhaps should have been one of our first clues that the descent would be....tricky?).

When the clouds briefly cleared, we could make out the general direction of the City below. We did not yet know at this point that we would be required to descend all the way to that City. Had we known, we probably would have given a little more thought to orienteering...

You can barely make out Troy in this next shot descending through the forest in a muddy, slippery stream (though I am sure he is smiling). Every time my feet slipped out from under me and I slid down on my butt, or better yet, every time I had the pleasure of witnessing the same thing happening to Troy or Erin, it reminded me of that scene from Jewel of the Nile, or was it Romancing the Stone (??) when they slide down the river through the jungle...Remember?

Celebrating our victory when we emerged to level ground just before dark. Only another 45 minute walk to go....

This evening we are heading to Quito to climb the glacier that is atop Cotopaxi. We will set out from the base refuge (at about 4600m) at midnight on Thursday and, if all goes according to the well laid plans of our qualified guides (we did better research this time), we will reach the summit at almost 5,900m sometime Friday morning. We have been fitted with all our gear from beleclavas to crampons and are excited to reach a glacier peak!


  1. It's romancing the stone....makin' memories eh?! Love it!

  2. It's Friday afternoon and I hope you got lots of pictures from the summit.

  3. Hi Troy and Nic. Nice pics. Happy Easter. Hope your hike was great. Love Dad & Mom

  4. Hi Troy and Nicole - did the Easter Bunny find you guys? Love to read your blog and see all the photos.
    Great work you're doing there.
    Love The McCrackens