After a determined start Team Despacito was forced to turn back after a storm pushed through the Andes on Wednesday morning. The team awoke to lighter winds at the Tambopaxi lodge, and after breakfast made their way to the base to start the attempt based on a good forecast. Immediately after reaching the parking lot they knew were in for a long night with the team having to start the initial approach to the refuge battling 30-40mph winds. Strong precipitation, along with freezing conditions, started to take its toll on the climbing gear, but the team battled on and by the time they reached the third stop the team was hoping that Cotopaxi / ‘Mamacita’ would relinquish and give them a gap in the storm and allow them to pass.

With Ecuador’s ‘secret weapon’ (Nicolas Miranda) the team continued to push. As other climbing teams turned back, Team Despacito struggled on wanting to see if things would ease at higher altitudes. Ultimately the storm proved too dangerous and the team made the decision to turn back. After a tricky a decent, in worsening conditions, the team arrived back to lodge with equal disappointment AND excitement having experienced a great mountaineering test. The team remains in good spirits and will move on to Chimborazo to assess the summit bid later this week.



  • Mount Baker (Komo Kulshan): A Skier’s Dream

    by Micah Sherman As we skinned our way up a snow covered forest road to the Heliotrope Ridge trailhead, we knew we were about to have a fun time on Mt. Baker, but we had no idea what a spectacular adventure we were in for. With heavy packs supported by fresh legs we made our […]

  • 2021 Denali Team Name Competition!

    Headed to Denali this Spring? Start planning that team name! Every expedition cooks up a team name they use to identify themselves when they check in each day via sat phone for the Cybercast. Family members can follow along with the Cybercast from home as teams make their way up the mountain, marveling at clever […]

  • Denali Prep Course: Lessons Learned

    by Ciara Sampaio I went over the Denali Prep Gear List a million times and checked everything off.   I was ready to go!   Was I really ready to go?   Eventually, I just had to go.  Checking off the carabiners and gloves was the easy part.  I found assembling 8 days worth of food to be […]

Partners & Accreditations

Alpine Ascents International is an authorized mountain guide service of Denali National Park and Preserve and Mount Rainier National Park.
© Copyright 2021 All Rights Reserved. Alpine Ascents International