About the Trip
Pico de Orizaba is Mexico’s highest mountain, as well as the third tallest peak in North America (eclipsed only by Alaska’s Denali and Mt Logan). With a summit elevation on of 18,491ft and a prominence of 16,148ft, it is also the second-most prominent volcanic peak in the world bested only by Mount Kilimanjaro.
Join us on a seven-day adventure to Mexico that will allow you to get a taste of high altitude climbing while developing or deepening your fundamental mountaineering skills including the proper use of crampons and ice axes.
About Pico de Orizaba
Orizaba is both a formidable high altitude summit as well as easily accessed thanks to its proximity to Mexico City. As such, the mountain is frequently underestimated and many visitors are tempted to short-change acclimatization (never a good strategy!), which leads to a low summit success rate; local guides estimate that only ~50% of all climbers reach Orizaba’s summit.
Our seven day Orizaba itinerary is designed to allow ample time for acclimatization and skills practice, while allowing you to tag a major high-altitude volcano in the span of a single week.
No prior mountaineering experience is required. Participants must be in excellent physical condition. Previous hiking experience is required. Previous backpacking experience is highly recommended.
Trip duration: 7 days / 6 nights
Max group size: 10 guests & 2 guides
All of our expeditions kick off with a welcome dinner on Day 1. Please plan to arrive at your destination by mid-afternoon of Day 1, with plenty of time to clear immigration and customs and/or check into your hotel prior to meeting your teammates for the welcome dinner, which typically starts around 7pm local time. If you are flying in for an international expedition, your flights should land no later than 3pm local time.
This is your itinerary for AWExpedition's 7 day climb of Pico de Orizaba.
- Day 1: Arrive in Mexico City; welcome dinner
- Day 2: Acclimatization hike near La Malinche
- Day 3: La Malinche acclimatization & summit day (14,640ft)
- Day 4: Transfer to Piedra Grande, Orizaba basecamp
- Day 5: Skills practice & acclimatization at Piedra Grande
- Day 6: Alpine start and Orizaba summit push (18,491ft); return to Mexico City & final team dinner
- Day 7: Depart
The last official business for all of our adventures is the final team dinner on the expedition’s penultimate day. While your expedition fee includes a hotel stay after the final team dinner, you may make departure plans for any time after 12:01am on the indicated departure day, including red-eye departures.
All itineraries are subject to change based on weather, team condition, and local logistics.
You will receive a detailed packing list in your expedition handbook after reserving your spot on this expedition. AWE & our local partner Nomada Mexico provide the team, cooking and emergency gear for this adventure including mountaineering tents and emergency communications; you are responsible for your personal climbing gear and attire including the following items:
- Mountaineering boots
- Ice axe & crampons
- Climbing helmet
- 50l+ backpack
- 20 degree (F) sleeping bag
- Sleeping pad
- Trekking poles
- Expedition-weight down jacket
- Hardshell (GoreTex) jacket
A broad selection of rental gear is available through national brands such as REI or Kit Lender. Rentals for mountaineering boots, crampons, ice axes, helmets & sleeping bags are also available locally in Mexico through AWE's partner Nomada Mexico.
Inclusions & Exclusions
- Hotel accommodation in Mexico City, double occupancy
- All logistics & transport in country
- Experienced mountaineering guides
- Welcome & final team dinners in Mexico City; all meals during the climb
- Team gear including four-season tents (double occupancy) and cooking gear
- Emergency GPS tracking and communications
- Flights to/from Mexico City
- Gratuities for expedition leader and local guides
- Meals not listed in the itinerary; sodas & alcoholic beverages
- Personal climbing gear and attire, including boots, sleeping bags, ice axe, crampons
- Personal snacks (bars, trail mix, or beef jerky) for on-trail sustenance
- Medical, travel, and rescue insurance
- Personal medications
- Single supplement - contact us to discuss availability and pricing
- Expenses while on expedition that are above and beyond the normal scope of the trip such as medical treatment, evacuation, trip interruption, flight changes, alcohol, gifts for friends and family, alcohol, mini bar, specialty coffees, 3rd party wifi charges
- Expenses incurred due to events out of the control of AWE such as delays or interruptions, political events, natural events of disasters, events outside of our control will not be covered by AWE. These may include circumstances such as extra hotel nights due to delays and need to be covered by your insurance