Ecuador High Altitude Expedition
Yesterday I told you it was foggy on Guagaua Pichincha. We went up to the gondola, put on our rain ponchos, and kept going despite the weather. As we ascended, it even started snowing. We had maybe 5 cm of fresh snow! The last 15 minutes as we were scrambling to the summit were pretty interesting because of all the new snow on the rock. We called it mixed climbing!
Everyone reached 15,400-foot summit of Gua Gua Panchincha. We got about 30 minutes of sunshine on the way down, and even caught a glimpse of Quito, which was quite beautiful. It is one more successful day of acclimatization for us, which is very good. One person had some minor altitude issues, but that was a very temporary thing.
We are now hiking above the hut on Cayambe. We had some sun and some good views and that was very nice. Now it is foggy, but that is often a sign of coming clearing, so we are optimistic.
Everyone is doing very well and looking forward to some practice climbing tomorrow and our first major ascent later in the week.
Everyone sends a warm hello to family and friends back home."