Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Ecuador High Altitude Expedition: Dispatch 13

Ecuador High Altitude Expedition: November 26–Dec 10, 2010

Lead Guide: Pepe Landazuri

Climbers: Diane Evans, Robert Krueger, Timothy Pattee, John Stephenson, Scott Curtis.

Pepe called Wednesday, December 8th at 9:30pm (Ecuador and US Eastern time) with the following message:

"Hello and good evening!  The group is sleeping right now so I thought I would call and give you a quick update.  We are going to make a second attempt at Chimborazo tonight. This time, we will have three rope teams instead of two. Diane, Tim, and I will leave at 11 o’clock. John will leave at midnight with Sebastian, and Robert and Scott will climb with Ramiro.

Everyone took a lot of pictures today, because it was the best weather we have seen yet.  It’s clear and just perfect. We are all feeling good about this second try. I really think we can get past the 5,500 meter mark, where we had to turn around last time. I’ll call you tomorrow about the same time, and let you know how it turns out. Wish us luck!"

As we drove to Tambopaxi, the clouds slowly lifted and Cotopaxi revealed itself just before sunset. Located about 75km south of Quito, Cotopaxi (5897m) is the second highest mountain in Ecuador, after Chimborazo. Cotopaxi has an almost symmetrical cone that rises from a highland plain of about 3800m, with a width at its base of about 23km. It has one of the few equatorial glaciers in the world, starting at 5000m.

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