Mexico Volcanoes 12/1 Trip Begins!

Hi, this is Stuart and Dylan checking in for the Alpine Ascents Mexico Volcanoes trip. Our second trip of three this season. I am pleased to report all of our climbers on the team, with the exception of one, consisting of Chris, Dustin, Cory, Taylor, Erik, Amy, Yolande, Mark and Tim have arrived here safely today or yesterday with all their bags.

This afternoon we all met up in our hotel gardens, the Maria Cristina in the heart of Mexico City for a quick gear check, orientation and team introductions. It was great to see a bunch of familiar faces again. The gear check was about as smooth as they can be, a testament to our climbers experience and due diligence. We then went out a few blocks away to a great Argentine steak restaurant Quebracho for some steaks washed down with a little Malbec. I have used it for the welcome dinner for the past 7 or 8 years and have always found it to be excellent and again it did not disappoint this time around.

Everybody is doing well, some a little tired from the travel, but looking forward to the trip ahead. It’s a nice cool, clear fall evening here in Mexico City. It seemed a little muggy and humid yesterday when I got in but that cleared up today. Tomorrow, after a quick visit to the National Museum of Anthropology and the The Zócalo, which is the main square in the heart of the historic center of Mexico City, we will leave the city and head east to the mountains. En route we will stop off at Amecameca for lunch and to pick up fresh fruit and vegetables, bottled water, and some other last minute purchases at the local market.

Our first objective is Iztaccíhuatl, a 5,230 m (17,160 ft) mountain. It is the nation’s third highest, after Pico de Orizaba 5,636 m (18,491 ft) and Popocatépetl 5,426 m (17,802 ft). The name “Iztaccíhuatl” is Nahuatl for “white woman”, reflecting the four individual snow-capped peaks which depict the head, chest, knees and feet of a sleeping female when seen from east.

Dylan and I are greatly looking forward to piecing together a successful expedition, success not solely based on whether we summit or not, but having a safe, fun time down here. I will try and cybercast each day but no news is always good news and no need to worry, your family and friends are in good hands. It seems in the past few years in particular satellite reception on Izta is somewhat spotty and it all too frequently cuts out. Again, all is well here and thanks for tuning in.

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