El Pico de Orizaba – Citlateptl

Citlateptl means Star Mountain. The Aztecs called it this because its snowy peaked gleamed in the sun. Climbers know it better as El Pico de Orizaba, and it makes a great first climb at altitude. Although the route we choose is only moderately technical, climbers should have the basics of snow travel well in hand before the trip. Our approach hike has proven time and time again to be a great recipe for success. With the cultural highlights of Mexico, this trip is a winner.

A trip to Orizaba provides a combination of easily accessible high altitude mountaineering, great weather, and cultural diversity makes this a must do trip. We will start by being picked up in Mexico City by private van, from which we’ll travel from the urban to the extremely rural. First we’ll acclimatize by climbing to the summit of La Malinche, a 14,000 foot peak that is the crown jewel of a popular Mexican resort area. After a challenging day of peak-bagging we’ll be driven down to Tlachichuca at the base of Orizaba. From there we will have a night of hospitality and refueling before beginning our two day approach.

Our first steps on the mountain begin after a short 4WD vehicle ride up a steep and rutted mountain road, lined with small farms. We hop out to meet our team of local cowboys and pack animals. After loading up our tents and group gear we hike for a few hours, following a remote route that winds through open sub alpine forest and farm land, allowing us to camp at a beautiful waterfall. Then we’ll make the final push up to our base camp at Piedre Grande. From here we will have two days to finish our acclimatization and attempt to reach the summit of Orizaba, at an elevation of 18,405 feet.

Orizaba is the highest point in all of Mexico, and the 3rd highest in North America next to Mount Logan. The nearest higher mountain is Ecuador’s Cotopaxi. If you are able to stand on the summit, you will enjoy the highest point on the globe, for a long way, well beyond where the curve of the earth takes it out of view.

Our eight day in-country program is different than most guide services and provides extra time for good acclimatization and rest before the final summit attempt. We have found that this slower approach to high altitude climbing works extremely well. We provide top quality food, lodging and highly personalized climbing instruction that gives you your best chance to achieve this magnificent summit.

After our standard program, we’re offering the chance to stick around and tag another summit of Ixta, the 3rd highest peak in Mexico. This additional trip is a great way to finish up your Mexican adventure. After all the acclimatization you’ve acquired, the long ridge scramble up to the summit of Ixta goes quickly and without much weight on your back. Sandwiched in the pass between Mexico City and Puebla, this is possibly the most aesthetic sunrise you’ll ever see over city lights.



$2,950 per person.
*Includes all in country expenses except airfare, alcohol, food in Mexico City.

Ixta Extension – additional $550 per climber

Trip Length: 
8 days
Trip Dates: 
January 26-February 2nd, 2019 - Orizaba and Malinche Climbs
February 2nd-4th, 2019 - Ixta Climb extension

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