Ecuador Volcanoes: Nugent and Team Enjoy The Sights in Quito

Posted by: Billy Nugent | June 20, 2012
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Ecuador
Elevation: 9,350'

Hi everybody and welcome to the first installation of many dispatches from this summer’s Ecuador Volcanoes program!

The team finally met each other as a complete group this morning for breakfast after several hectic laps between the airport and hotel late last night. Team members were trickling in gradually through the night and the crowds of Ecuadorians awaiting family members made for quite a scene. Actually, it was more like a zoo with a traffic jam outside. Fortunately, Jaime and Victor (our expert locals) were incredibly helpful in scooping up our climbers and adept at navigating the melee. Anyway, after a decent breakfast and getting to know each other a bit the team headed out for a day cruising around Quito as full-fledged tourists of the sight-seeing variety. With the majority of the city situated at over 9,000’ we have actually already begun our acclimatization process. After a long day of travel just to arrive in Ecuador, it was nice to have a day to just cruise around and get comfortable.

The city tour hit up lots of old colonial and contemporary sights including religious, governmental, and culturally significant buildings. We climbed the rickety catwalks high in the Basilica and caught tremendous 360 degree views of this huge metropolis of more than 3 million citizens and later went to the exact geographical equator where we played around with the strange forces the earth’s rotation creates uniquely on the middle of the planet. The equator museum also had a cool sort of natural history museum with a collection of flora and fauna and anthropological relics from Ecuador’s various regions. We’re talking giant anaconda and boa skins, real human shrunken heads, and a gnarly, preserved amazon candiru - look it up… The team had fun getting to hang out in a casual atmosphere and we aim to keep the fun going as we begin some of our physical activity tomorrow with a training hike up on Rucu Pichincha, a volcano right above the city where we will hopefully hit nearly 16,000’. That should help jump start the acclimatization followed by a night’s rest at relatively lower altitude in Quito.

Well, headed off to dinner with the crew, more to come as the situation develops,

RMI Guide Billy Nugent

The Basilica in Quito

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Have a save climb!  Hope the weather is cooperative and you get great views the whole way.

Posted by: Oscar on 6/21/2012 at 8:17 pm

Have gun you guys. Be safe

Posted by: chris fisher on 6/20/2012 at 6:00 pm

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