This was the first day hike of our adventure. We arrived Wednesday around 11 PM to Quito and decided to wait until Sunday so we were well adjusted to the altitude. Considering the first day we were breathing heavily after walking uphill for a few blocks, this was wise.
We started at the top of the Teleferico just before 9 am. The initial trail is hard packed sand with a few ruts, so other than the elevation the going was pretty easy.
We came for was the views, and they did not disappoint.
We did this hike early on a Sunday and that meant we weren’t the only ones on the trail. There were a few tourists like us, groups with ropes going to do serious climbing, and a lot of locals.
The hardest part of the trail was towards the end, the sand slopes and the bouldering to the top. On the way up we managed the sand slopes by following the switchbacks through them. On the way down, a gentleman saw us struggling and pointed out that there was soft sand on the right side which was really easy to just slide down.
We made it about one third of the way up through the bouldering section. Sergei forgot to bring gloves and the last couple hundred feet of elevation were pretty technical, so we decided to stop there. Close to the summit the views weren’t great either because of the clouds.
Getting to Teleferiqo was easy, we took a cab using Cabify from our AirBnB and it cost $4.50.
Ride up the Teleferiqo was $8.50 per person.
Gear (the summit is 15,407 feet so you should be prepared for any weather):
- Hiking boots
- T-shirt & long sleeve for layering
- Rain jacket
- Down jacket
- Water & food
- Poles (we didn’t bring them, but wish we did)
Travel Outlandish also has a great article here.
Map and GPS links
For details please check out the Garmin links.
- Volcano Pichincha Up
- 2:16 total (1:34 moving time)
- 3.3 miles
- 2,200 feet
- Volcano Pichincha Down
- 1:32 total (1:05 moving time)
Volcano Pincha Up
Volcano Pincha Down
For anyone reading this far, fun fact rucu means ancient in the local native language.