This high plateau embellished with volcanic scenery is the home of the Andean Condor, deers and many other endemic animals that hide in its mountains, valleys and lakes above 3,500 meters above sea level. For experienced and adrenaline driven hikers that enjoy challenging the heights and the cold weather, this is the ideal place to choose.
Day 1: Our meeting point will be a location previously selected in Quito; we will then head south through the Pan-American’ Highway until the small town of Machachi where we will detour on a dirt road for about 2 hours until reaching the “Pedregal” at 3,500 meters above sea level. This is where our adventure begins… during the trip you will be able to see magnificent volcanoes and mountains such as the Cotopaxi, the Pasochoa , the Rumiñahui all in a context of nature, pure cold air, local indigenous communities and Andean flora and fauna. The entire journey to our camping spot in the north entrance of the Cotopaxi National park should take us about 4 hours.
Day 2: After having breakfast we will start to hike from the heart of the National Park up to Limpiopungo Lake. In the way you will admire magical volcanoes, typical endemic flora and fauna, the Pre- Incan fortress of “El Pucará del Salitre” that served as a viewing point and strategic military spot, springs and small hills. It normally takes us 6 hours to reach Limpiopungo Lake, and the terrain is fairly flat.
Day 3: Our driver will take us all the way up to the parking lot at about 4,500 meters above sea level; here we will start our hike up to the José Rivas Refugee located at 4,800 meters. This hike takes about an hour and our team will be waiting for us with a hot cup of cocoa. We will take some time to rest to then continue to one of the volcano’s glacier at 5,000 mts; you will have enough time to rest and take amazing photographs. Then, it’s back to the parking lot and on to Quito.
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