Pico de Orizaba Trip Report (#900)
- Signed By: Matt Bachmann
- Date submitted: January 09, 2004
The glaciated top third of the mountain is relatively straightforward, just head uphill until you hit the crater rim. But immediately below the glacier, and above the headwall above the hut, there's about an hour of difficult routefinding to avoid being stuck on a nasty scree slope on the right side. I recommend bearing left and climbing the ridge as soon as you clear the last headwall, near the high camps at about 16,500 feet. Otherwise you'll add about an hour to your summit attempt by picking your way up the mixed rock/ice valley, which sucked a lot.
I'd also recommend taking an extra acclimitization day between Tlacachuca and the hut, at Hidalgo, for example. My climbing partner and I went straight from town (like 8,700) to the hut (like 14,700)($60/person roundtrip) and both had altitude problems. I got better after a rest day, but he didn't, so he couldn't summit. No point in handicapping yourself by attempting to climb too fast.