It's an unforgettable and majestic place to me!!!
Nice mountain with nice view of the Laguna de la Luna. Perfect goal for acclimatization.
A good introduction to class 4 climbing. Most of the rte is class 3 but there are some decent class 4 sections with good holds but considerable exposure. Summitted on a clear day with the lakes below. Most amazing thing was to see a group of Mexican distance runners training on the road up to the base of the rte. These guys were going at a respectable 10 K pace above 10K feet. The second most amazing was the number of locals who drive up to 13k to picnic at the lakes.
reached the summit, very cloudy a hailstrom caught us on the descent
summited with son montana on a beautiful day....stayed in hut the night before 13,750..then off to Iztaccihuatl and orizaba
I had a great time climbing this with my friends and boyfriend. We drove through Mexico City that morning and returned to our home in Texcoco that night. Seeing the crater lakes was beautiful, and being with young friends who had never seen snow before was exciting for them. A great mountain.
Second time in two days.
See John's TR: Mexico Day Hikes.
I took 1.5 hours to myself to bag this summmit while my good friend Gustavo distarcted the principals... giving me enough time to reach the top. I was fortunate that my students were embroiled in a 2 hour snowball war otherwise all the blocking in the world would have availed me little. A great workout for the lungs, and as it was my first time above 3000m in 8 years. I was more than impressed by how my lungs did.... great views from the top... even on a cloudy day.
Had a wonderful time climbing this mountain! I have photos (including panoramas) on a webpage here:
I kept thinking of my failure on Toluca a few weeks earlier and wanted to complete the climb. I made my way back to Toluca to try again. As I walked the road towards the volcano, an Irish expat living in Mexico City gave me a ride all the way to the crater lakes. I then climbed Nevado Toluca in perfect weather. It was a nice scramble. I then made my way back to Mexico City to head for home after my 22-day trip.
I rode a bus to Raices at the base of Nevado Toluca, but when I got off the bus, it was snowing hard. I bought some chips and bread (not much food for sale in this tiny town!) I walked he road towards the albergue (mountain hut), but two local girls, age 19 and 22 wanted to join me. I could tell they had no chance of climbing the peak, and was annoyed that they were following me. Using my rudimentary Spanish, I tried to tell them that this was a dangerous climb to try and dissuade them, but they would ask, “then why are you going?” It was still snowing very hard when pickup truck passed and the girls ask them for a ride to the albergue for them and myself. We caught a ride to the allbergue, when I again started walking towards the mountain. The girls were still following, to my disappointment. I wouldn’t mind making a few new friends, but I came here to climb the mountain! They were freezing cold and it was still snowing hard. The 22-year old girl sat down to cry on the side of the road. I remember thinking, what should I do now, set up the tent? I didn’t want to turn around and walk all the way back to the albergue. After a few minutes, a Volkswagen Beetle passed. They were going to give us a ride up the mountain, and hopefully take the girls back to town. When we got the national park checkpoint, almost to the crater and start of the climb, the national park service turned us all back because of the snowstorm. “Too dangerous on the mountain” they said. I ask if I could camp at the checkpoint and wait out the storm in my tent, but they said no and we all had to go back to the albergue, which we did. Dang, wasn’t this supposed to be the dry season? There was a party going on at the albergue for school children and teachers. I was offered some food, which was better than just living on bread and chips. I camped nearby, because I didn’t want to spend the $12 to stay in the albergue. After setting up the tent in the snow and waiting around getting soaked, I finally gave up and went into the albergue and spent the $12 for a room. The girls finally left after I ignored them the whole time.
The sun came out near sunset and the mountain was covered in fresh snow and with the sunset, was very beautiful. One of the school teachers invited me to his house down in Toluca where he said he was coming up to the mountain in a few days and he would show me around the country a bit. I accepted and rode down to Toluca. I found out that evening that he had romantic interest in me, so I took off late at night. Jeez, can’t a gringo climb a mountain without being bothered? That was the end of my first attempt to climb one of the Mexican Volcanoes.
I did the crater rim traverse from south to north as a day hike. I left Hotel San Carlos at 8:00am. By the way, I liked Hotel San Carlos near the zocalo (main town square). Rooms were clean, plenty of hot water, cable TV, etc. I paid 250 pesos/night for a single room as of February 2003. Anyway, left Hotel San Carlos with my taxi driver (Sr. Monteagudo) at 8:00am and got to the end of the road at the base of the crater next to Laguna del Sol at 9:35am. Senor Monteagudo and I had tamales that his wife cooked for us. He climbed with me for a little while. We started climbing at 10:10am. Once we gained the main ridge to the left, Sr. Monteagudo headed down to his blue taxi. I continued on and summited "Pico del Fraile" (15,390') at 11:55am. Then I continued along the rim and summited "Pico de la Aguila" (15,157') at 1:40pm. Took one of the chutes down the north side after Pico de la Aguila where Sr. Monteagudo picked me up at the road. Got to the road at 2:40pm. Overall 4.5 hours to do most of the crater rim traverse. I arrived at Hotel San Carlos in Toluca at 4:00pm. Sr Monteagudo charged me 600 pesos for the 8 hours (8am-4pm).
Signing in from Cholula, Mexico. Wow, what a beautiful peak. I basically did this peak with only some old information from XPMexico.org (which doesn't exist anymore but mentioned 5 routes). The rim traverse is a great class 1-3 hike (I didnt do the class 4 portion south of the main peak). Secor offers almost no good information on this peak which made it more fun. Vesna and I headed up the north side to Pico de la Aguila (Eagle's Peak) at 11:15am. She turned around just when the class 3 was starting. I started traversing the rim which was incredible fun. I met Bob Evans under the true summit at around 4pm. He told me of his way out from Laguna del Sol which looked like a straight shot out passing behind a mound. Unfortunately when I got there it was anything but straight and the sun when down when I got to Laguna de la Luna which I didnt know about. With the sun down, I spent the night inside the crater with gorgeous views of the stars and lake but with no idea how to get out. I tried 3 paths and finally found one out at 6am. I got back to the trailhead at about 6:30am for the drive back to Toluca. Wow, what an adventure. More to write about this. Bob did the crater rim from the south including the class 4 portion (no class 5 necessary but opted for an easier class 2 descent). Bob and Vesna would climb via the West Ridge (which I've been told is the "normal route") the next day which I rested.
See my SP Trip Report for addional details.
I climbed as a day trip out of Toluca. If you do the same the road at the hut (about 6 kilometers from the crater) is closed by a barrier until 8:00 am , there is a 2 peso toll per person (apparently to maintain the road). Since it takes about an hour and a half from Toluca, you don;t need to leave Toluca before about 6:30 am. My taxi driver waited at the crater for the 4 hours it took me to summit and charged me 600 pesos for the round trip and wait. I stayed at the Hotel San Carlos and liked the hotel quite a lot.
Summited El Aguila on 6 Dec, from el Albergue Alpino .
The following day, summited El Fraile .
5 hours from the Albergue . Wonderful mountain, with the 2 lakes .
Clear weather, nice view towards POPO and IZTA .
after spending the night in the not-so-clean but well built hut next to the check point in the road to the crater, we were able to start our climb very early. Class 4 terrain, rope may be needed depending on your abilities. 6 hours. As my partner Tom Fralich says, is the best climb we did in the Mexican Volcanos
Climbed the Fraile peak from outside the crater.
Summited both Aguila and Fraile from outside the crater. I actually climbed Aguila on a field trip with my students... I managed to find and hour and a half to myself to scramble to the top. Later I returned with a friend and climbed Fraile from the outside as well. It is another great climb/hike with beautiful views from the crater rim... completely worth Mexico's heinous traffic jams.
Did the complete traverse of the crater rim with Juan Valderrama. We took a rope and an abundance of rock gear but ended up not using any of it. The climbing was outstanding (mostly class 4 with a few moves of easy class 5) and we were able to complete the route in about 6 hours. We both agree that this was our best climb in Mexico.