Ecuador Trip Log

Day 1 - 25 Jan 2003 - Saturday
Fly into Quito, Ecuador. Meet the Team at the Hotel Reina Isabel, Quito

Day 2 - 26 Jan 2003 - Sunday
Short conditioning trek to Hut at 14,960 ft on Cuaguapichincha (4784m). Also known as "Wa Wa". Hotel Reina Isabel, Quito

Day 3 - 27 Jan 2003 - Monday
Stop in Guyallamba (7550 ft) to work tire problems. Travel to Otavalo (4944 m) Hacienda Pinsaqui (8660 ft) - Chachi- sweet tea and alcohol. Great dinner View Cotacachi from hotel

Day 4 - 28 Jan 2003 - Tuesday
Long ride but a Short training hike up Imbabura (4609m). Reached 11,400 ft Travel to Hacienda Guachala (9340 ft) . Great food

Day 5 - 29 Jan 2003 - Wednesday
Travel to Cayambe Hut for some ice refresher work . Practice day at 15,440 ft. Return to Hacienda Guachala (9340 ft) . More great food.

Day 6 - 30 Jan 2003 - Thursday
Return to Cayambe Hut (15, 230 ft ) for summit attempt To sleep at 6 PM. Not much real sleep. Wake up at 1150 PM

Day 7 - 31 Jan 2003 - Friday
Depart Cayambe hut at 1:00 AM Light rain and snow. Turned back at 2:15 AM when hard snow and rain started Slept until 9 AM Day hike with all six team members to top of rock ridge (15,840 ft) Second climb on ridge in afternoon. Early to rest for possible second Cayambe attempt

Day 8 - 1 Feb 2003 - Saturday
12:05 AM wake up. Weather looked very good. Suited up but did not get past the hut door. Weather rolled in. Back to bed. Hit the road. First email café. We discovered that Shuttle Columbia was destroyed on reentry. Drive to Cotapaxi Natl park and Tambopaxi Hacienda Great hotel at 12,500 ft on plains below Cotapaxi First view of magnificent Cotopaxi Great lunch and dinner.

Day 9 - 2 Feb 2003 - Sunday
Late wake up. Breakfast. Travel to Cotopaxi hut for summit attempt. Dinner and go to sleep at 6 PM

Day 10 - 3 Feb 2003 - Monday
Wake up at 1205 AM Leave hut at 1:05 AM Climb Cotopaxi - 12 hours round trip View our route to top and view a close up of the final route to the top by the hang gliding photographer Jorge Anhalzer. Brutal weather most of climb. View a short film of the climb. Travel to Hacienda Hosteria La Cienega (10,000 ft) Great dinner

Day 11 - 4 Feb 2003 - Tuesday
Travel to Railroad station hotel at Urbina. East side of Chimborazo (12,130 ft) Excellent dinner, wine and Boris Yeltzin Vodka

Day 12 - 5 Feb 2003 - Wednesday - Wed
Weather on mountain not good. In fact we have not seen the mountain yet. It is in a cloud. We opt for a second night at the Station and a summit attempt on Friday morning. The work begins on the "Great train ride". Shy and Oswaldo originate the concept. Before we know it we are on our way down the mountain to RioBamba. We fit eight people with helmets on the rail cart along with a shovel and head south. The trip covers 25 miles (42 km) in 42 minutes for an average speed of 35 mph (58 km/hr) and an altitude loss of 2919 ft (890 m). "View the Train movie". It was a wild ride through the beautiful countryside. llamas stare. A great accomplishment, at the very least, especially since we did not kill everyone on board this very old rail cart. Paid someone in Riobamba to transport the cart back to Urbina. Ate lunch in Riobamba and took a bus back to the rail station after sending some email. Night two at Urbina Station.

Day 13 - 6 Feb 2003 - Thursday
We move up to the high hut (16,500 ft) on Chimborazo for our one and only summit attempt. Good dinner. Hit the rack at 6 PM. Worst nights sleep ever for all. Sleep only minutes at a time. 11:00 PM wake up. Zachuritas for breakfast.

Day 14 - 7 Feb 2003 - Friday
12:05 AM. We head out on approach to Chimborazo climb. Weather is misty and we all think this will be a fruitless night. The plan is to turn back when we reach the glacier if the weather remains bad. The weather suddenly clears and a beautiful night lies ahead. We arrive at the glacier about 2:00 AM and start up the ice. View our route up Chimborazo. There is no wind until sunrise about 6:30 AM. We reach the summit at 1300. We carefully make our way down the mountain which is bare ice for thousands of feet. The weather worsens as we get lower. Drive to Quito Dinner with the group. Hotel Reina Isabel, Quito

Day 15 - 8 Feb 2003 - Saturday
Everyone flys home except Joe who spends an extra day.
Dr. Frazier entertains passengers at Quito Intl airport.

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