Pico de Orizaba

Pico de Orizaba Trip Report (#1030)

This was a great climb! We had a narrow window of opportunity to reach the summit. Four days before we went for the summit there was a white-out at Pierde Grande (base-camp)as well as on the summit. The next two days were ok (no white-out)but high winds. The day before we summited several groups were turned back due to high winds and severe cold. Al Burgess and Jason Krauss, of Camp Five Expeditions, lead a group of about 15 clients and only 4 people made the summit. But fortunately on my summit day the winds stayed down until about one p.m. so we were able to reach the summit by 8:30 a.m. and get back to base camp before they kicked up. Although the climb is not technical it takes a lot of endurace because it is pretty steep. Due to the altitude several people experienced AMS and some mild cases of HAPE and HACE. So keep a close eye on your partners and don't be afraid to take them down. The summit is not worth someone crashing and taking you with them. Also be prepared for extremes in weather. We experienced white-out, extremes in temperature and high winds. If you have any questions feel free to e-mail me. I recommend this to anyone who is interested in high altitude mountaineering. A note, if you are planning on driving yourself out of Mexico City beware of the traffic cops, they hit us for $850.00 pesos for some made up charges.

Pico de Orizaba Trip Report Index