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Mountaineering in Colombia - Pico Cristóbal Colón and others

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Mountaineering in Colombia - Pico Cristóbal Colón and others

Postby mugdiman » Sat Mar 07, 2009 12:55 am

Hi,

I am heading to colombia at the 12th of march and would like to do some climbing there. The first weeks I (hopefully) will live with a family in Bogota to do some sports climbing, then I would like to visit the natural parks and climb the higher peaks combined with some trekking. First of all, how is the overall situation there? Any areas to avoid completely? I have been living and climbing in Ecuador in 2005 and never experienced any problems of crime in the mountains. Is Colombia more dangerous?
Then I wonder why there is no single entry of the highest peak Pico Cristóbal Colón on summitpost? Means that this area is potentially dangerous and to avoid? Anyone that can give me information?

I would prefer to do Colombian peaks as an acclimatisation for the Cordillera Blanca where I will go in May. But if people advise me not to, I will just see the beaches and have some fun, and do the acclimatisation in Ecuador or Peru.

Is there a mountain club in Bogota or Medellin? I speak Spanish and would love to climb with Colombians.

Cheers, Dennis
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Postby Ario » Tue Mar 10, 2009 5:51 pm

For your information, an older topic in this forum (in case you would not have already noticed it):
Any Informations about Colombia?
The area is of interest to me but have never been there...
Suerte en tu proyecto,
Ario
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Postby Scott » Mon Mar 23, 2009 1:01 am

Then I wonder why there is no single entry of the highest peak Pico Cristóbal Colón on summitpost? Means that this area is potentially dangerous and to avoid?


I don't know if it is dangerous, but it is officially closed and has been for several years now (unless things have recently changed) so you can't climb there legally.

Ruiz, Tolima or the Cocuy would make nice destinations, but the highest crater on Ruiz is sometimes closed.
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Postby bgriffs » Mon Mar 23, 2009 3:46 am

I have an aunt and uncle who traveled there and loved it, but they definitely stuck to urban areas. I would be very careful in rural parts of Colombia. Here is the U.S. State Dept travel warning:

http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/tw/tw_941.html

I happen to be reading the account of the 3 Americans referenced in the warning (Out of Captivity). They were captured minutes after their plane crashed. In all likelihood you'd be fine, but Colombia has the highest rate of kidnapping in the world.
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Security and Climbing in Colombia

Postby Federico1 » Wed Oct 07, 2009 8:04 pm

Hi,
since 15 years I live in Colombia. The security situation depends on the place you go and the way you travel:

- All cities you can consider secure; the danger to get victim of thieves I consider it the same in Colombia as in tourist places of Ecuador or Peru.

- Travelling by road is also ok (including to the snow mountains), do it at day light.

- Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta with Pico Colon and others: it is officially closed and I really recommend NOT to go, due to political violence, humanitarian crisis and the legitimate will of the indigenous people to protect their sacred places.

- Parque Nacional de los Nevados: in the central part of the country, with (too much) turistic development in the northern part (Ruiz) and attractive Nevados in the south (Isabel, Tolima): Yes, you can go their and climb one or two 5.000m peaks in 5 days. Recommended!

- Sierra Nevada del Cocuy: secure and the most beautiful mountain chain of Colombia, with glaciers, big walls and trails. Strongly recommended!

- Volcanoes going South: Huila, Purace, Galeras, Cumbal, Chile: Nevado del Huila is No-Go-Area, in the other parts security is so, so. Inform you locally about the situation.

So, welcome to Colombia and give your comments at www.nevados.org
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Postby Diego Sahagún » Thu Oct 08, 2009 1:12 am

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Postby bird » Thu Oct 08, 2009 3:36 pm

SP member Physics has climbed in Columbia
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Re: Mountaineering in Colombia - Pico Cristóbal Colón and ot

Postby bighornmonkey » Mon Apr 25, 2011 11:40 pm

Anybody has climbed "Nevado del Huila" (highest volcano in Colombia) in the past couple years...there doesn't seem to be a page for it on summitpost.
I read on the internet that it last errupted in 2008. Federico1 wrote that it is a no-go-area...because of volcanic activity or crime?
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Re: Mountaineering in Colombia - Pico Cristóbal Colón and ot

Postby atavist » Tue Apr 26, 2011 6:36 am

I know a guy who was kidnapped while climbing Pico Cristóbal Colón. He rented a mule from an outfitter who subsequently tipped off the banditos. He and his partners were held for ransom for a few days then released after turning over the contents of their ATM account.
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Re: Mountaineering in Colombia - Pico Cristóbal Colón and ot

Postby Federico1 » Fri Apr 29, 2011 6:20 am

Hi bighornmonkey,
just in these days I was checking again the information on Nevado del Huila and looking on the new photos of the Vulcanologist Observatory (impressive!).
For mountaineers, the situation continues unfortunately unchanged: no-go-area due to ongoing eruptions and ongoing armed conflict.
The day things will change I am very interested to go (for me from Bogotá, its just a trip of 8 hours by car to get there).

Take a look to the Nevado here: [url]http://intranet.ingeominas.gov.co/popayan/Fotografías[/url].
Note: it is not the highest mountain, some international elevation information is false. The correct altitude is 5.364m

Greetings, Federico
Last edited by Federico1 on Sat Mar 23, 2013 7:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Mountaineering in Colombia - Pico Cristóbal Colón and ot

Postby skyward22 » Sat Mar 23, 2013 3:43 pm

Does anyone know if the situation in Colubmia has changed? (i.e. have these peaks opened up)
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Re: Mountaineering in Colombia - Pico Cristóbal Colón and ot

Postby Federico1 » Sat Mar 23, 2013 7:07 pm

No, nothing has changed.

Actual situation:
* best mountain and best security conditions: Sierra Nevada del Cocuy (see here in summitpost or http://www.nevados.org.
* interesting mountain and good security conditions: Parque de los Nevados. Please note, no access to Nevado del Ruiz from Manizales (the tradicional tourist access).

No-Go-Areas:
- Nevado del Huila
- Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta (exception: organized hiking trail to Ciudad Perdida)

There might change something next year, if the on-going peace-talks between Government and FARC will have a positive result. Let's see..

Greetings from Bogotá
Federico
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Re: Mountaineering in Colombia - Pico Cristóbal Colón and ot

Postby Scott » Sat Mar 23, 2013 8:43 pm

Please note, no access to Nevado del Ruiz from Manizales (the tradicional tourist access).


Federico, is it just the crater itself that is closed or the region around Ruiz? I was just wondering if I needed to update the page below:

http://www.summitpost.org/nevado-del-ru ... ter/150388

====================================================================

Anyway, for anyone else, Colombia (which is not Columbia-that refers to the United States/Canada) is a beautiful country. It is one of my favorites in South America. According to Lonely Planet, it is now safer than many other South American countries; at least if you visit the more secure areas. I can't wait to go back.
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Re: Mountaineering in Colombia - Nevado del Ruiz

Postby Federico1 » Mon Mar 25, 2013 5:40 pm

Hi Scott,
the last news are that this Saturday, the National Park has opened for tourists, but only half way up. Access to snow continues closed, with the argument of volcanic activity.

See press article (Spanish): http://www.eltiempo.com/colombia/eje-cafetero/ARTICULO-WEB-NEW_NOTA_INTERIOR-12709272.html

However, you can access from Pereira to Nevado Santa Isabel and from Ibagué (south) to Nevado del Tolima.

Greetings,
Federico
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Re: Mountaineering in Colombia - Pico Cristóbal Colón and ot

Postby Scott » Mon Mar 25, 2013 5:41 pm

Thanks. I'll update the page.
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