Mexico Volcanoes Frequently Asked Questions
Climbers should have successfully completed any of the following Alpine Ascents Beginner Mountaineering Courses: Cascades 6 Day, Alaska or Rainier 8 Day, Alaska 12 Day, Cascades 13 Day, or have equivalent skills and experience. Those who have had a strong performance on a 3-day Baker or Rainier climb may also join. Climbers must have basic knowledge of progression on snow and ice, self-arrest, crevasse rescue and glacier travel. Snow and ice slopes are moderate (up to 45 degrees). During the expedition we will spend three days on the Cayambe glacier reviewing skills, a requirement based on our desire to have similarly skilled team members.
We highly recommend being in very good physical condition.
Along with the required technical skills, review the Training page of our web site.
An American guide accompanied by local guides lead the trip. The ratio is typically 3:1.
October through December is the best season for climbing in Mexico.
This trip usually includes six to eight climbers.
On the climb you will be sharing expedition tents, however, in town you may share rooms or pay a higher fee for a single room. Contact our office for information on single-room supplements.
On average, packs will weigh 25-35 lbs. When we move to High Camp on Ixta, the pack weight for this one day will be 55-60 lbs.
Please review the Gear List.
All rental gear will be mailed to climbers prior to the climb. Those requesting rental gear must submit an expedition rental form with payment by fax or mail. Climbers are expected to clean all rental gear and return it to us by mail following the expedition.
While all items are required, there may be times when some of the items on the Gear List may not be used (such as during warm weather or changing conditions). The Gear Lists are created by the guides to assist in preparing climbers to summit in any conditions.
While it is impossible for us to list all brands for certain gear, we do offer a wide variety of equipment in our Gear Shop that has been hand picked by our staff of mountaineering experts. Please feel free to call our offices with any gear questions or substitutes. Plastic boots are required for this climb.
Water is either boiled or treated with a water purification solution such as iodine or chlorine.
In town you may enjoy authentic Mexican food, however guides will serve dinner foods like pasta and rice while on the mountain. Breakfasts will consist of nutritious hot or cold cereals.
You may bring power bars, Gu, or similar high-energy foods. Alpine Ascents provides all meals on this climb.
Not at this time.
Fares are generally less expensive when booked early. You may use our travel agent (Charles Mulvehill 1-800-727-2157) or book flights your self. Please note that flights booked online are often difficult to change. Please send us a copy of your flight schedule as early as possible as this allows us to book pick-ups and hotels.
The airport in Mexico City is challenging for pickups due to size and unpredictable amounts of time needed for clearing customs. The easiest option is to take a taxi to your hotel, which will be specified in your confirmation package. Alpine Ascents will happily reimburse this fee.
We are happy to make arrangements for conveniences such as personalized tours, extra hotel rooms, airport pick-ups, or private rooms. Please indicate that you would like a private room on your application and we will contact you with information on single-room supplement costs (for hotels only).
Not at this time.
In the cities and in hotels, telephones are readily available. Our guide carries a satellite phone while on the mountain.
Many books are available on Mexico’s history, please see our Reading List.
You can always call our offices and a guide will contact you — generally about one month before your trip departure. We will also mail a list of other team members to you 30 days prior to departure.
About $500 should easily cover any extra expenses and tips. Most climbers prefer to bring about $1,000 cash along with credit cards.
Guides are permitted to accept–and greatly appreciate–tips. Contact our office for specific guidelines for your trip.
You may Book Online, call our offices with a credit card, or mail/fax an application with a check or credit card number.
We accept MasterCard, Visa, American Express, personal checks, and Alpine Ascents gift certificates. To reserve a space, the deposit is $500, with balances due 120 days prior to departure. Unpaid balances can result in forfeiture of place on trip.
See our Price & Schedule page.
This climb takes us to different locations so that early departure may be difficult. If a climber needs to leave early, our guides will assist in obtaining the necessary transportation to get you home as quickly as possible.