Cerro Rico lurks over the city of Potosi, Bolivia like a vulture, just waiting to claim the lives of hapless miners, as she has done since the fifteen hundreds. Spanish silver mines produced massive riches making Potosi the richest city on earth in the late 1500's, the mines also cost many indian and black miners their lives. Potosi is the worlds highest city at around 13,400 feet and a great place to go to acclimate to altitude. Though physically not very interesting, Cerro Rico deserves mention because of it's domination both in presence and economically of the city of Potosi and additionally for it's ease of access.
If you get to Potosi, you can't miss it. Just walk from downtown to the mountain.
When To Climb
You don't want to camp here, security would be an issue.
Cerrro Rico is a big rock pile, for weather and other conditions you need to check locally, it's a fairly quick climb so you don't need much of a window.
As "a big rock pile' Cerro Rico has an infinate number of routes. There is a lot of scree and loose rock, so be careful. There are actually paths on the left side of the mountain as you look at it from town. On top is a weather station, often manned. Roundtrip from town takes about four hours. To the summit is a gain of 2,500 feet.