Friday, December 8, 2017

2017 Ecuador Cayambe/ Antisana Skills Expedition (December 1 - 10, 2017) Dispatch 2

December 8th Dispatch:

Climbers: Jason Sloan and Lara Kelly

Guide: Fredy Tipan

Freddy called this morning to report that the team just completed an ascent of Cayambe. After making the report, Jason got on the phone. 

"We had absolutely excellent conditions on the mountain," Jason said."There was another team on the mountain that tried to summit the day before. They got turned around because of weather. We didn't have any problems like that. It was an easy six hour romp. The snow was good. The summit was good. It was all good! It was a bluebird day and we could see both Antisana and Cotopaxi!"

Jason noted that they are going to continue on to a hacienda near Antisana today. The plan is to hike up to high camp tomorrow and attempt a summit the next day...

Until next time...


Wednesday, December 6, 2017

2017 Ecuador Cayambe/ Antisana Skills Expedition (December 1 - 10, 2017) Dispatch 1

December 4th Dispatch:

Climbers: Jason Sloan and Lara Kelly

Guide: Fredy Tipan

Fredy called this afternoon after the group completed their acclimatization hike on Rucu Pichincha. He passed the phone to Lara for her Comments on the past couple days of climbing.

"The trip is fantastic so far! Ecuador is a beautiful country and Jason and I are so happy to be here! We arrived a couple of days early and were able to explore the “New Town” and “Old Town” before the expedition started, so we appreciated Fredy rearranging the first day so we could see something new. Our visit to Papallacta was a lot of fun. We enjoyed the hot springs, but we also got some exercise on a hike that included two alpine lakes and amazing views of the surrounding volcanoes. It was a perfect first day for us."

Today we hiked Rucu Pichincha (15,413 f / 4697 m) and the weather and timing of the hike were perfect. We're both feeling great with the acclimatization process and can’t wait for the days to come!

Until next time!"



2017 Ecuador Cayambe/ Antisana Skills Expedition (December 1 - 10, 2017) Dispatch 1

December 3rd Dispatch:

Climbers: Jason Sloan and Lara Kelly

Guide: Fredy Tipan

Fredy called Sunday evening to let us know how the first couple days of the Expedition has gone:

“Yesterday I with met Jason and Lara, a great couple from San Francisco. We are looking forward to doing some great acclimatization hikes over the next few days before climbing Cayambe and Antisana.

We had a really nice chat in the morning when we reviewed the program and gear to make sure we were all set, and after that we left for a little day trip out to Papallacta. Were had planned to do a city tour (which is good acclimatization in itself because we are at 9500 feet here) but Jason and Lara wanted to see some countryside. So went headed out to Papallacta, which is a very pretty town that is also well known for its hot springs.

We went on a short hike and after the hike, Jason and Lara enjoyed some time in the hot springs. So yesterday was a great day to start acclimatization processes, with a good level of easy activity but not too much. it was just right!

Today we hiked Pasachoa (13,776 ft / 4198 m). We met at 8 am after breakfast and drove 1.5 hours to the trailhead. It only took us 3 hours round trip climbing to the summit and hiking down. Lara and Jason are doing really well and are very fit and strong. And both appear to be acclimatizing quickly.

I will call you tomorrow and let you know how our next hike goes.”



Thursday, November 16, 2017

2017 Ecuador Cayambe/Antisana Skills Expedition (November 3 - 12, 2017) Dispatch 4

November 13th Dispatch:

Climbers: Meril Moen, Piotr Stapor, Jonathan Deffenbaugh

Guide: Romel Sandoval

Romel called Monday morning with the following dispatch:

Yesterday the group summited Antisana. Conditions were great and everyone was very happy with their success. Unfortunately, two of the climbers opted to end their expedition early and were unable to join the group on Antisana. They are back in Quito now, enjoying a relaxing couple of days before departing on their journey home.


At this point, Jonathan took the phone and gave us a few thoughts about the trip thus far:

"Everything is going very well. We're on our way to Chimborazo now and very excited about the upcoming climb. We all had an excellent climb of Cayambe and Antisana. We were unsure about Antisana, what with the remoteness and ever-changing weather patterns we weren't sure if we could make it to the summit, but the weather cleared just in time!

"The acclimatization process has been excellent. This program's approach to acclimatization is a great schedule for aspiring high altitude climbers. We have some great photos to share later on. For now, here's a photo from the summit of Rucu Pichincha."

Romel assured they will call again from BaƱos on Wednesday, as it is difficult to get reception on Chimborazo.



Thursday, November 9, 2017

2017 Ecuador Cayambe/Antisana Skills Expedition (November 3 - 12, 2017) Dispatch 3

November 9th Dispatch:

Climbers: Todd & Priscilla Clayton, Meril Moen, Piotr Stapor, Jonathan Deffenbaugh

Guide:
Romel Sandoval

Romel called Thursday afternoon to let us know that the group made a successful summit climb today on 15,080-foot Cayambe!

Three of our climbers were able to reach the summit, while the others opted to stay at a lower elevation and wait for the summit climbers return.

The weather was good, and one climber said, "It was just fantastic to step onto the top of such a great mountain. Totally exhilarating!" Everyone was quite excited about the team's successful day. They are all now enjoying big dinner and a restful evening at Hacienda Guachala. Tomorrow will be a rest day at another lodge before they head to their next climbing goal, Antisana.



Monday, November 6, 2017

2017 Ecuador Cayambe/Antisana Skills Expedition (November 3 - 12, 2017) Dispatch 2



November 4th Dispatch:

Climbers: Todd & Priscilla Clayton, Meril Moen, Piotr Stapor, Jonathan Deffenbaugh

Guide: 
Romel Sandoval

Romel called Monday afternoon with the following report:

"We are calling to let you know we have now completed two very enjoyable high altitude hikes and scrambles. On Sunday, we climbed Pasachoa (13,776 ft / 4198 m) in perfect weather. Everyone enjoyed hiking through the beautiful high grasslands and then scrambling up to the summit. We had great views of many of Ecuador's high peaks.

"Today we climbed Rucu Pichincha (15,413 f / 4697 m), again with perfect weather. We had good views the whole day, and I am pleased to say everyone, again, felt comfortable with the altitude. We have very good acclimatizers on this team.

The whole group on the Summit of Rucu Pichincha. Priscilla Clayton. 


"Shortly, we will start our drive to Hacienda Guachala, which is in a little settlement just below the big peak of Cayambe (18,996 f / 5789 m), which is our first high altitude goal. Tonight we will have dinner at the hacienda and lodge there, and tomorrow we will drive up the mountain to the hut that is on its flank. We'll probably hike up to the glacier in the afternoon, and do some skills training and then again on Wednesday. We'll go to bed early Wednesday night and get up really early for our ascent of Cayambe the following day.

"Everyone is feeling good and they are in good shape too, so we are all looking forward to putting out our best effort on Cayambe."

Romel then invited Meryl Moen (Minneapolis) to continue the update:

"Everything has been organized so extremely well. My expectations have been exceeded every day! The two hikes were well chosen – great views and just the right amount of workout. We’ve have had good weather. The acclimatization has been well choreographed with us going slightly higher each day.

"My team members and I all felt good on the two hikes. Everyone is really pleased with how they are adjusting to the altitude, Some of us are using Diamox and some not, but all are doing well.

"Final thoughts – We are excited to be getting onto the glacier tomorrow and we are all enjoying each other. Good people in this group!!


"We'll talk to after our Cayambe climb. Wish us luck."





2017 Ecuador Cayambe/Antisana Skills Expedition (November 3 - 12, 2017) Dispatch 1


November 4th Dispatch:

Climbers: Todd & Priscilla Clayton, Meril Moen, Piotr Stapor, Jonathan Deffenbaugh

Guide: Romel Sandoval

Romel called Saturday afternoon with the following report:


"Hi, this is Romel from Ecuador.

"Today, we started our trip with a nice breakfast together, followed by a program orientation, and then a fun tour of the city of Quito. It's beautiful weather today here in Quito, and at this moment as we are calling in to give you an update, we are all sitting in the very nice restaurant near El Panecillo. We are enjoying our lunch and as we sit here, we have a great view of the Virgin of Quito statue in the distance.

"Everyone is having a good time. And we are also happy about the weather. Not only is it nice today, it is supposed to be sunny at least for several days while we are doing our acclimatization hikes.

"We'll call in a couple of days – probably Monday to let you know how our acclimatization is going.

Talk to you soon!"