On December 27, we woke up early and attempted a day-hike to the Ixta summit. It was a very interesting climb involving rock scrambling, cramponing, hiking up steep scree slopes, etc. Class 3 rock scrambling seemed strange while wearing plastic boots at an elevation of around 16,000 feet. After reaching a false summit in mid-morning, we looked down on the "belly glacier". We stopped to put on crampons and headed across the glacier. After crossing the glacier, we took off our crampons and made the final push to the summit (17,300 feet).
From the summit, we took some pictures of Popocatepetl (17,900 feet) erupting. Popo has been off-limits for several years due to its frequent eruptions.
Here are some pictures from the trip:
Climbed in a day from La Joya after tons of acclimatization on Orizaba. We did the same thing weeds19 did, tagging at least 4 high points. GPS showed same altitude +/- 2 meters on all high points. This was a long day...
We came in from La Joya carrying many liters of water and spent a night at the Ayoloco Hut before attempting the climb. We awoke in the morning to a cloud-obscured route and decided to sleep a little longer. After another hour the clouds lifted and we headed out and up onto the Ayoloco Glacier and perfect snow conditions. A couple hours later we had navigated to the three summit areas and felt satisfied that we had stood on the highest ground!
Great way to spend New Year's Eve! Spent the night prior at the Ayoloco Hut, climbed the glacier then joined La Arista del Sol to the summit. Spent another night in the hut (and witnessed the fireworks all across Mexico City at midnight for the New Year's celebration) and then hiked out on New Year's day for some great tacos in La Joya while waiting for our ride:)
Steve & Craig went on to summit while I was stuck at 14,436 ft/4400m with AMS. Blech! But-- the view was spectacular from the saddle we camped at: hut #3, summit, Popo, Amecameca, Puebla, Orizaba. Mexico City's lights filled the entire valley at night: major boulevards identifiable. No rope taken or needed. Crampons not used. Huts filthy.
Partners: Steve Reynolds, Craig Grossman
A great warm-up for Orizaba. I thought this one was harder with all the false summits. Make sure you get a good deal on the taxi ride up there, we payed the equivalent of 20 bucks for all four of us.
With three classmates from Mexico City College, I rode a VW to Paso Cortez and spent several hours climbing to the Sleeping Woman's knees. Clouds then descended and deprived us from any view. With little motivation to go on, we turned back short of Ixtaccihuatl's boobs, her highest point, and descended back toward Paso Cortez. Somehow Ixti did not present the same personal challenges as did Popocatepetl and Orizaba. You may examine two photos I took on this climb in my summitpost submissions.
Really really enjoyed this route. The terrain and the view continually change, so it is quite nice. Gene Allwine and I started at the Altzomoni hut at 2:30am and summited at 9:30am. If you're ever at the park and want information and history of the area, ask to speak with Miguel Espinal. He is a volunteer climbing guide and a great guy who is usually at the Altzomoni hostel if not on the mountain.
Arista del Sol route. From Grupo hut, I went up a shoot to the left of standard route to the ruins. I think it was easier that way because of snow.
Summited as a solo climb using the "normal route" which ascends via the portillo to the knees in one day. I had some route finding trouble en route to the portillo. Not much snow/ice when I climbed, so I used conventional goretex boots and trekking poles. The old summit icefield has diminished to such an extent that it no longer is the highest point of the mountain. Volcanic cinders, scree and loose rock make the hike up to the knees a little painful, but the hiking is much more enjoyable above the knees to the summit. A long but enjoyable day!
Reclimbed Iztaccihuatl Jan. 28, 2014 with Mike Preece, Appleton Scutchfield and Ryan Swapp. We had great luck with the weather. I didn't even bring my crampons, but I did a short glissade with my axe onto the Ayoloco glacier. Thankfully Mike brought a nice camera along! Another great day.
Rather then drive to La Joya, Began @ Buena Vista, took 3 days to reach the summit. I had no adverse altitude effects on the climb. Water was accessable and also given to us at the Hut by 20+ college students from Mexico City just leaving. Weather was beautiful until decent on summit day. Also found ice melt water several meters down the draw, West of the Hut. Left @ 4:30 on the 20th. Not much wind and a beautiful sunrise. Popo erupted several times during the climb which produced nice photos. Kept a photo log of the entire trip. No issues to deal with but was surprised to not see much snow and glaciers were melting. No need for crampons or ice ax but took if needed. Guide had us use crampons across the glacier going up. Summitted @ 10:37 a.m. Storm came in so made a rapid decent to knees then down the scree field NW of the Hut. Picked up gear and decended to La Joya by 4:00. Wonderful day!
Can't really call this the Ayoloco Glacier route anymore because there is no more glacier. A GREAT route though. Water can be had below La Joya, above the first saddle on the lower approach, and in the form of ice to melt at the McAllister hut.
Left La Joya at 5 am and reached the knees (refugio Luis Mendez) by noon but weather was starting to get nasty and the altitude was starting to take a hit at me and my brother. Decided to keep it safe and turn back and got back to La Joya around 3:30.
I'll be back...lol
Climbed Izta in 24 hours after climbing Nevado de Toluca, starting the hike to refugio "Grupo de los cien" late on the 26th solo and then going for the summit with the first rays of sunlight along with a group of 4 guys from Aguascalientes Mexico. Izta was very dry compared to the snow covered Popo. The weather was perfect, with sunny but hazy skies and no wind. This was the second of four volcanoes on my trip to Mexico.
Check my trip report "A good dose of thin mexican air" on El Pico de Orizaba page for details.
Good haul to the top on the "Chest". Shame we had no viz as we were in cloud the whole way. Still, it was a good warm up for Orizaba. Thanks Rubin.
very interesting and exciting climb. we had the summit to ourselves.
Great climb, although hardly any snow. Crampons were not necessary.
What forjan said. This was my second "high altitude" attempt. Strangely I began feeling symptoms of AMS at around 13.5k. By the time we arrived at our high point (+15k) I felt a bit more than drunk and quite nautious. It took me a half of an hour to figure out the math regarding my ascent (I was going 200 vertical feet per hour with 1600' left to go). I had to make the humble descision to retreat. Altitude works in mysterious ways as I had completed a 5+ hour traverse at 15k+ just a few days prior to this climb. I will go back next year to complete the Mexico volcanoes.
Climbed with awagher. Our plan was to climb the Ayoloco route as a day hike, coming down via La Arista del Sol. We started at 2:20AM from La Joya. Lost a lot of time bushwacking in the dark in the section below the first saddle going through multiple cow paths. Partner came down with AMS and we retreated back to La Joya. Our highpoint was 4700m (15,420 ft), a bit beyond & above the Ayoloco hut. It was a cold morning (estimated upper teens before sunrise), but sunny and clear (no clouds whatsoever). awagher said he's planning to come back and try again.
Surprising little snow on the mountain. It's really just a hike up - didn't really need ice ax or crampons. Only snow to be found was on belly and chest glaciers. Still a beautiful mountain with amazing views. Unbelievable amount of people at La Joya starting Saturday morning - probably around 200 all told.