Climbed with Rafael Martinez (Ecuadorian guide) and his clients. We started early from Llovizna Lodge (El Chaupi) at 5:30 am and from the trailhead (La Virgen parking lot) at 6:00 am.
We followed the trail up to the ridge that ends up at the lower plateau in Illiniza Sur, but we headed north towards Illiniza Norte. Ran up to the gully to set a fix rope for the clients. Climbed on sandy/wet terrain until we got to the summit (5,126 m / 16,818 ft) after 5 hours 20 minutes of constant climbing.
Heavy snow fell on the way back. Got back to the parking lot and headed back to Quito.
We wore crampons during the approaching to the summit.
The route has nothing special but is ok for an aclimatisation ascent.
I summited Norte for the second time on April 14, 06. I saw in the other logs that many people spent the night. If one takes a car, this is unnecessary- Norte can easily be climbed as a day hike. We went the North Face Route- sort of. Instead of crossing under the summit like it says, we went off the path and cut up to the ridge on the left side of the summit, saving time. I would highly reccomend this mountain- it's a blast, rainy or blue skies!