Entries from Mexico
January 23, 2016
We are all back in Tlachichuca after a beautiful summit day on Orizaba. We awoke at midnight and were out the door by just after 1. The team did an excellent job of preparing and getting out of camp on time! With all he new snow in the area lately, we were able to put crampons on just above the Piedra Grande Hut which made the walking conditions a bit more efficient! We reached the summit at just after 9 am and enjoyed clear skies, calm winds, and relatively warm weather, considering it was one of the coldest climbs I’ve had down here.
We enjoyed nearly an hour of time on the summit and then carefully began our descent to camp. The upper mountain was a bit icy and we exercised careful footwork and precision focus on our walk down the steep and smooth slopes of the Jamapa to the glacial moraine at 16,000’.
Back in town, we were all excited for the delicious dinner the Reyes family provides, and quickly got our equipment packed and ready in order to fully enjoy our meal at this quaint and historic soap factory.
Today was the final day of our expedition, and we are all looking forward to heading home to family and friends!
Thanks for following along!
Audio transcription from Orizaba summit
Hi everyone! This is Solveig calling in from the top of Orizaba. The team and I are up here. It’s a beautiful day- light winds and clear skies. Was a beautiful night as we climbed under a full moon. The team is doing well. We’re going to take a few more minutes and enjoy yourselves and then start our descent. We will check in from Tlachichuca. Cheers.
RMI Guide Solveig Waterfall calls from the Orizaba summit!
On The Map
January 22, 2016
Hi everyone. This is Solveig calling in from the Piedra Grande Hut on Orizaba. Our team arrived around 3 p.m. We have beautiful skies and light winds; we’re all really excited about our climb tonight. We are going to have a delicious pasta dinner and then tuck in early and get ready to go climbing. We’ll touch base tomorrow when we return. Ciao.
RMI Guide Solveig Waterfall calls in from Piedra Grande Hut.
On The Map
Thursday, January 21, 2016
We are all enjoying our day off today. After getting some well deserved sleep most of the team spent the day drinking coffee, eating various types of mole sauce, and taking in the beautiful sights of this historic city.
Tonight we will gather for dinner and discuss the logistics for our departure to Tlachichuca tomorrow morning. The forecast looks great, and we are all excited about our next mountain…El Pico de Orizaba!
RMI Guides Solveig Waterfall, Billy Haas, and the team
Looks like you’re having a great time and seeing some beautiful sights. Am enjoying following your blog and seeing the pics. Lynne Penrice
Posted by: Lynne Penrice on 1/22/2016 at 1:32 pm
January 20, 2016
Well, what a day. We went to bed last night to cold temps and high winds and by the time we woke this morning at 2 am the winds had calmed and the temps were on the rise. The climbing was tough right out of camp today, mixed snow and rock conditions up the Knees Route made for some challenging conditions. However, once we crested the “Knees” the roller coaster ridge line of Ixta made for some great climbing. Conditons for the rest of the climb were ideal and we enjoyed a great summit and descent. We really snuck the climb in today because on the way down from High Camp conditions began to deteriorate. We are all currently on a bus to Puebla, where we will be resting and sightseeing tomorrow before gearing up for our climb of Pico de Orizaba.
On The Map
Hey this is Solveig and Team calling in from the summit of Ixta! It is a beautiful day, no wind, gorgeous and we are all happy!
RMI Guide Solveig Waterfall Calling in from the Summit of Ixta.
Hi everyone. This is Solveig calling in from high camp on Ixta. We’re doing wonderful. Everybody just enjoyed a nice high camp meal and we are all tucked in getting ready for our summit bid tomorrow. We’ll check in from the top. Ciao.
RMI Guide Solveig Waterfall calls in from Ixta High Camp.
January 19, 2016
Good evening from the Altzomoni Hut!
After a long drive, multiple vehicle transfers due to muddy washed out roads, and a little bit of extra walking, we are all getting some rest in preparation for heading up to high camp tomorrow.
It was a beautiful day with excellent views. We even had the good fortune of catching a glimpse of Popo erupting this morning on our drive! Everyone is feeling strong and excited to hit the trail in the morning.
We’ll check in from camp tomorrow night!
On The Map
Happy to see everyone smiling and doing great! Good luck to you all…especially Tara and Karl ;)
Adios from Texas,
Posted by: Erin on 1/19/2016 at 6:49 pm
January 18, 2016
Hello from the La Malitzi Resort! We are snug in our beds nestled on the flanks of La Malinche, a 14,636’ extinct volcanic remnant. We spent the day in this Parque de Nacional stretching our legs and lungs for the first time since we all gathered in the city. We were treated to perfect weather and excellent hiking temperatures. However, as is often the case driving in Mexico, we were delayed by an enormous traffic jam. A bottleneck not in the city this time, but instead shortly before arriving at the mountain. Mexico City was recently hit by a large storm that deposited snow at relatively low elevations. Since this is quite a rare occurrence, the local news outlets have been broadcasting a continuous cycle of footage of families up playing in the snow; some touching it for the first time!
With all the media attention, there were hundreds of cars trying to access the La Malinche trailhead and things quickly slowed to a halt.
After waiting as long as we could, we left our overnight bags with the driver to sit in traffic, and began the journey through the literally thousands of local hikers towards our goal of reaching the upper slopes of the mountain. Given our time frame, we had no chance of reaching the top, but we hiked for 3 hours amidst a herd of parents, grandparents, children and dogs running past us and often stopping to inquire where we were from and if we were going to look for the snow, as well.
When we reached our high point, we bundled up and rested for a half an hour or so, allowing our bodies to recover while enjoying the expansive views from 13,300’.
Upon our arrival back at 10,000’ our driver had finally reached the resort, checked us in, and most importantly made sure the propane water heaters were warming up for a well deserved shower. It was nearly dark as we got settled and we were all anxiously awaiting the fantastic dinner that Rogelio (our transportation coordinator) promised.
It did not disappoint! We feasted on steaks, chorizo, tortillas, beans, guacamole, and grilled vegetables resting on small charcoal grills on our table.
Everyone is now off to bed for a solid 8 hours of rest, and then tomorrow we begin our journey toward our first objective, climbing Ixta!
Well check in tomorrow from the Altizomoni Hut!
RMI Guides Solveig Waterfall, Billy Haas and the team
On The Map
January 17, 2016
Hello from Mexico City!
Our team arrived throughout the day, and by 7pm we were all gathered on the rooftop patio of the hotel for an equipment review and logistics breakdown of the days to come.
We are all looking forward to leaving the hustle and bustle of urban life and heading into the hills for our first acclimatization hike.
We’ll check in again from the La Malitzi Resort.
Thanks for following!
RMI Guides Solveig Waterfall and Billy Haas
Well folks…I had my best weather day on Ixta. And yesterday and today, I had my worst weather day on Orizaba. The team is great but we were unable to summit Orizaba. High winds and a constant rain prevented us from going higher. However, that is not preventing us from having a great experience. As for me, this was a phenomenal team and we had I think, too much fun. Mike and I hope to climb with everyone again. We are now back at Sr. Reyes and are drying all our soggy gear.
This is the last blog for Team Mexico. Thank you all for following along.
RMI Guides JJ Justman and Mike King