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Entries from Mexico

Mexico Volcanoes: Frank, Konway & Team Call from Summit of Ixtaccihuatl

Hi, this is RMI Guides Jenny Konway and Eric Frank calling in from the summit of Ixtaccihuatl with a full team. We reached the summit at 7:45 this morning. We are hanging out, taking some photos and we'll head back down soon. The team is psyched.

RMI Guide Jenny Konway calls from the summit of Ixtaccihuatl.

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Mexico’s Volcanoes: Frank & Team Checking In from Ixta’s High Camp

Our day started with a 7am wake-up call, followed by hot coffee, eggs and some of the best papaya we'd ever had. While we enjoyed our breakfast, we took in the view, as Popocatepl put on a show for us, spewing large clouds of ash and smoke into the morning sky. 

We finalized our packing, loaded our gear into the van and headed to the trailhead to start our hike to high camp. The team did a great job, arriving at high camp in good spirits and in good time. After setting up tents and getting moved in, we all took a well deserved break before coming together for dinner. Once we'd had our fill of soup and quesadillas, we discussed our plan for tomorrow's ascent, said good night and headed to bed.

Wish us luck as we head out tomorrow for our hopeful summit of Ixtaccihuatl!

RMI Guide Jenny Konway

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Mexico’s Volcanoes: Frank & Team Staging for Ixtaccihuatl

After a nice long night of sleep to recover from our acclimatization hike, the Mexican Volcanoes team was up bright and early this morning to move toward our first objective- Ixtaccihualtl. 

This climb will be a multi-day process, but we are already in a good position. Tonight the team is staying at the Altzomoni Hut at 12,700ft. We spent the evening packing for tomorrow, enjoying carne asada tacos and watching the sunset on the volcano across the valley. 

Everyone is excited for the climb and looking forward to getting higher on the mountain tomorrow. 

Wish us luck and thanks for following along.

RMI Guide Eric Frank

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We are all wishing for you excellent weather and a safe and successful journey up the mountain!!

Posted by: Jean LeTellier on 2/18/2020 at 5:08 am

Mexico’s Volcanoes: Frank & Team Gather in Mexico City, Start Acclimatization

Today was an event filled day for the RMI Mexico Volcanoes team. We started out bright and early with a delicious breakfast at Hotel Geneve, followed by a quick drive to our base for the night, La Malintzi. Upon arrival, we changed our shoes, put on some sunscreen and readied ourselves for our first acclimatization hike of the trip. Expansive views of the Tlaxcala region were enjoyed by all as we made our way up the mountain. The team did a great job, making quick work of the ascent trail. After four hours of hiking, we took our last break and started our descent back downhill to where an asado awaited us for dinner. In addition to the above, we also welcomed our last teammate who, due to flight complications, had to catch up with us here. With a full team and all of our luggage in hand, we're ready to head out early in the morning. Next stop, Altzimoni hut!

RMI Guides Eric Frank & Jenny Konway

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Great picture of the team love your smile Paul! Looks like you are having fun!

Posted by: Judy Neumann on 2/23/2020 at 6:17 am

Orizaba Express: Hailes & Team Turn Around at 17,000’ Due to Conditions

 We pushed as hard as we could today but the weather just didn't let us summit Orizaba. We all climbed strong up to about 17,000ft when the combination of strong winds, wind loaded slopes, and reduced visibility made the decision to turn around and head downhill quite clear. It is always disappointing to not make the summit, but the while team is in great spirits back at the Casa pierde hut. Now we load onto the 4x4 for our final push to Mexico City and a nice hot shower and dinner. See you all very soon.

RMI Guide Walter Hailes

RMI Guide Walter Hailes checks in from Orizaba Summit attempt.

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Damn those high winds and white out conditions!!  Obviously the right call to make!  Have fun in Mexico City.  Looking forward to seeing pics and hearing stories.  Safe travels!

Posted by: Chip on 2/1/2020 at 12:24 pm

You’re all unstoppable!!! Warm greetings from Florida and Boston!

Posted by: Team Alden on 1/31/2020 at 8:06 am

Orizaba Express: Hailes & Team Will Train Today, Climb Tonight

Update: January 30th at 1:30 pm PT

Hello friends and family,

We spent a few hours today climbing higher on Orizaba in partial sunshine and protected from the wind by the mountain. During the trip we refreshed our ice axe and crampon skills and may have done a little scheming about new business ideas. We are sticking to the plan of an early dinner and bed and really early rise to attempt the summit. No matter what the weather does we will be safe and have fun.

January 30th at 6:30 am PT

We made the correct decision to abandon the tents and sleep in the hut at Piedra Grande. The wind gusts gradually got stronger till early morning. Another team did attempt the summit but turned around before the summit because of the wind.

The wind is still strong but we are going to get out and do a little training/acclimation hike and enjoy the day. We'll keep looking up and see what the weather gives us for tonight.

RMI Guide Walter Hailes

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Orizaba Express: Hailes & Team arrive at a Windy Piedra Grande

Our day started calm and orderly, but did not finish that way. We had another great meal at La Malinche before we started driving to Tlachachula. Then we loaded the van and hit the road. After sorting gear and eating lunch in town we loaded up the 4x4 and drove the bumpy road 2 hours to camp. Camp was a little windy when as we set up our tents. We choose to sleep in tents instead of the hut so that we could have a nice quiet night. However, just as we finished the last tent big wind gusts started hitting us. When we almost lost one tent 3 times we decided to change plans, drop the tents and retreat to the hut. The team made quick work of relocating and we settled into the hut nicely. We'll sleep sound tonight and see what the wind is like in the morning.

RMI Guide Walt Hailes & Team

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Orizaba Express: Hailes and Team Enjoy Time at La Malinche

Good morning. We had a great day yesterday driving to La Malinche. We left Mexico City and grabbed some lunch and snacks food for our climb today. Once we arrive at the resort we settled into the cabana and Brett, Jeff and John went for a hike before dinner. Alden, Merrick and I spent time at the cabana prepping for our climb today. Dinner was delicious with queso and guacamole for all.

This morning we grabbed breakfast and hit the trail for our first acclimation hike. The forecast called for sunny and warm. We had a near perfect day today on our acclimation hike. Sunny skies, light breeze, and a great team. We moved well uphill even in the loose rock and scree of the mountain and got to relax on to for well over an hour, breathing the thin air as getting ready for the next challenge. We are all looking forward to another great dinner and a warm fire in our cabana tonight.


RMI Guide Walt Hailes

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Mexico Volcanoes: Davis & Team Summit Orizaba!

Despite going to bed socked in at 14,000ft, we woke to clear skies and put on our boots in the early, cold and dark hours just after midnight. Fortunately for us, the freeze line was low the night prior, so we walked into snow just out of Piedra Grande up into the the rocky maze known as the  Labyrinth portion of the route. This made the approach to the glacier much easier than the usual condition or ball-bearing like rocks. At the toe of the glacier we were greeted with howling winds out of the west.  Based off of the plums of snow rocketing off the upper mountain, any snow that had fallen the day before was surely sublimating in the atmosphere. Nonetheless we pushed upward, armed with our crampons, ice axes, and goggles.

After a few more hours of getting blasted by the veracious winds, the team dug deep and hit the summit crater just before 8:00 am.

The team made light work of the descent and got back to high camp in good style. We quickly loaded camp into the 4X4s and hit the dusty road back to Tlachichuca where we were greeted by the friendly staff at the Reyes’ climbers hostel. We enjoyed our final delicious Mexican dinner together and toasted to stories and laughs over well deserved beverages. Tomorrow we will head back to Mexico City, homebound with new friends and memories to share!

RMI Guide Alan Davis


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Orizaba Express: Hailes & Team Meet up in Mexico City

We had a great kick off meeting last night and everyone is excited to be together and starting a fun week long mountain adventure to Pico de Orizaba.  After quick introductions for Merrick and me (Alden, Brett, Jeff and John have climbed together in the past) we enjoyed a beautiful view from a roof top lounge looking over Mexico City. We then moved to Historico Azul a unique open air restaurant beneath a perfectly manicured canopy of trees for dinner. In each trees hung hundreds of small oil lamps giving the room a warm glow, and the food was delicious. Today we are driving to La Malinche, a small mountain resort, to begin our acclimation process with a promising weather forecast. 

Thanks again,

RMI Guide Walt Hailes

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