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Entries from Mexico


Mexico’s Volcanoes: King & Team Descend Safely & Return to Tlachichuca

We had a great summit day on Orizaba; cold at times, warm at times and lots of new snow on a mountain that desperately needs it. The descent from the summit was warm and straightforward, what else could you ask for? The Team is staying in a turn of the century soap factory turned climbers hostel, packing for their flights tomorrow and enjoying some showers and refreshments to wrap up another great Mexico Volcanoes trip.

RMI Guide Mike King

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Mexico’s Volcanoes: King & Team Reach Summit of Orizaba

Hey, this is Mike with the Mexico volcanoes team. We are standing at 18,491 feet on a clear, windless day on the summit of Pico de Orizaba. We had a cold calm morning to start off with lots of new snow on the route made for great climbing. The team is doing well. We will be descending here momentarily. We will send you a message when we’re back safe down in Tlachichuca. Thanks for following along. Everyone’s doing great.

RMI Guide Mike King


RMI Guide Mike King calls from the summit of Pico de Orizaba.

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Mexico’s Volcanoes: King & Team Enjoy Rest Day, Now Ready for Orizaba

We had a relaxing day in historic Puebla yesterday. The Team spent the day walking around the markets and taking in the beautiful buildings and cathedrals. The city was founded in 1531 and is a busy commercial hub filled with murals, colorful buildings, delicious food and several ornate cathedrals.

Today we are headed East through rolling Mexican farm land to the small village of Tlachichuca near the base of Pico de Orizaba. After we pack our gear, 4x4 trucks drive us up to Piedra Grande hut at 14,000’. From there we will get ready for a summit bid tomorrow.

The weather looks promising and recent snowfall should make for great climbing. Everyone is doing well and looking forward to the main objective, 18,491’ Orizaba.

RMI Guide Mike King

On The Map

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Mexico’s Volcanoes: King & Team Summit Ixtaccihuatl

We got an early start to our summit day. The first section is a steep scree slope, a big bite to chew when you wake up at midnight. As we gained the ridge we were surprised by the amount of snow, making for efficient climbing. The weather was warm for 15,000’+ and light winds allowed us to wear a few layers and stay comfortable while winding up and down the five false summits of Ixtaccihuatl.

With the city lights glowing in each direction and shooting stars across the horizon the Team kept plugging away until we reached the summit.

So many climbs ascend with the sunrise to thier backs. The unplanned benefit to summiting in the dark was that we descended into the rising sun with stellar views of Orizaba poking through the clouds. Alpineglow on the snow flanked sides of Ixta was a nice reward.

We are back down and headed to Puebla for a day of rest, culture and tacos al pastor. Thanks for following along.
RMI Guide Mike King

On The Map

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Excellent. Get some rest for Saturday!!

Posted by: Jon & Lynda Jones on 11/7/2018 at 12:38 pm


Mexico’s Volcanoes: King & Team Ascend to High Camp on Ixta

Today we woke to what might be the clearest morning of the Mexican countryside one might ever see. With the massive populations of Mexico City and Puebla the view is usually obscured with smoke, volcanic fog, smog. This morning we could make out high rise buildings and had a crystal clear view of Orizaba.

The Team took four hours to ascend to High Camp, located at 15,500’. We had warm weather and heavy packs. Everyone is relaxing in their tents as afternoon clouds roll through.

We will have some dinner and prepare for our summit bid tomorrow morning. Should be a nice day if the recent weather holds.

RMI Guide Mike King

On The Map

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Mexico’s Volcanoes: King & Team Arrive at Ixta, Prepare for Climb

This is Mike checking in from the lower flanks of Ixta. Today we had a casual breakfast and a two plus hour drive to the National Park where our first climbing objective is. We are at a hut looking out on the snow covered peaks of Ixta and Popo. There has been lots of rain this week which means good climbing conditions. The Team has been taking in the scenic countryside in between some short walks to acclimate. We have our gear checked and are getting ready for a delicious dinner before turning in for the night. Tomorrow we head to High Camp to get ready for a summit bid. Fingers crossed for good weather and calm winds.

RMI Guide Mike King

On The Map

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Wishing for good weather for the team. Good luck for your summit on Wednesday!!

Posted by: Jon & Lynda Jones on 11/5/2018 at 9:43 pm


Mexico’s Volcanoes: King & Team Arrive Mexico City, Weathered off La Malinche

Hi, this is Mike with the Mexico Volcanoes program. Everyone arrived yesterday with all our bags and we spent the night in Mexico city.  We loaded our vehicle this morning and toward the mountains. We had a nice, casual day today. Lots of rain and thunderstorms kept us from hiking La Malinche. The group is hanging out watching some football and we are going to sleep tonight around 10,000’, the former training center for the Mexican Olympic team. We’ll be heading over to Ixta tomorrow. We will be checking in every day from here on out. Thanks for following along.

RMI Guide Mike King

On The Map

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Good luck. Hopefully the weather is good for your summits.

Posted by: Jon Jones on 11/4/2018 at 7:54 pm


Mexico’s Volcanoes: King & Team Reach Summit of Orizaba

We are all back safely in town after a successful summit of Pico de Orizaba! The entire team stood on top after a long day climbing up the Jamapa Glacier. We had thunder and lightning last night that turned into snow all the way down to the hut. The skies cleared around 12:45 am and we were out the door at 1 on a warm night. The Team is sorting gear for flights home in the morning and looking forward to a good dinner and restful nights sleep. Thanks for following along.

RMI Guide Mike King

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Mexico Volcanoes: King & Team at Piedra Grande Hut

We spent a casual day off in historic Puebla yesterday looking at murals, eating tacos and checking out the local pottery made in the area. There were bands and peaceful protests in the Square, surrounded by beautiful and ornate cathedrals.
This morning we woke early to meet our transport and head to Tlachichuca where we outfitted for Orizaba. Senior Reyes runs a climber’s hostel that is housed in his family’s historic soap factory. The mountain has been covered in clouds and there is some snow flanking the lower slopes. This has been an extremely dry winter for the area and new snow is a welcome sight.
For the remainder of the day we’ll take a short walk up hill to see the Labyrinth, a scree and rock maze of ledges and chutes that makes up the first two hours on our summit day. 

The Team is excited to be here and out of the 4x4 trucks that crawl their way up the dusty roads through corn fields and beautiful pine forests. Hopefully we will be calling in from the summit tomorrow morning. Keep your fingers crossed for good weather and clear skies!

RMI Guide Mike King

On The Map

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Mexico’s Volcanoes: King & Team Turn Around on Ixta

Today was not going to be our day, because when it snows on Ixtaccihuatl there is apparently thunder and lightning. We spent a few hours at high camp with electrical storms pulsing through, while we held tight yesterday afternoon.  Around 1 am there were clear skies all around and no wind to speak of. After climbing up the ‘knees’ of Ixta we stared out into a developing storm near La Malinche (our day hike from Day 2). watching the storm continue to spread out among the horizon, the guides decided that descending to camp and packing up would be the best call.
Even though we only had 1,500 vertical feet to climb the linear distance was too long to justify staying on the ridge, should the storm pick up steam.

With a slow descent through the ‘knees’ due to frozen scree and snow we arrived back in camp, packed up and headed to the trail head. As with most decisions, there is a moment of regret and asking yourself if you made the right call. Our walk down hill was sunny and bluebird that is until it wasn’t and the billowing dark clouds overtook the summit ridge.

We are headed to Puebla for the evening and tomorrow we will get to explore the historic city center. After a couple nights sleep in nice beds we’ll head out for our Orizaba climb, the third highest peak in North America. While a little disappointed, everyone is glad to not be in an electrical storm and is doing well.

RMI Guides Mike King & Jenny Konway

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