Volcanoes of Mexico

El Pico de Orizaba (18,850ft.), Iztaccihuatl (17,343ft.)

Mexico Volcanoes Frequently Asked Questions

What is the skill level of this climb?
Climbers should have successfully completed our 6-Day Training course, 8-Day, 12-Day, 13-Day or have equivalent skills and experience. Those who had a strong performance on a 3-Day Baker or Rainier climb may also join. They must have basic knowledge of progression on snow and ice, self arrest, crevasse rescue and glacier travel. Snow and ice slopes to be dealt with are moderate (up to 45 degrees). During the expedition we will spend three days on the Cayambe glacier reviewing skills. The requirements are also based on our desire to have similarly skilled team members.

What is the physical conditioning for this climb?
Being in very good physical condition is highly recommended.

Any tips on how a climber can maximize their chances of success?
Along with the required technical skills, review the training page of our web site.

Who is the guiding team composed of (How many guides? Climber to guide ratio?)
An American guide accompanied by local guides lead the trip. The ratio is typically 3:1.

What is the best season to climb / which dates will have the most chance for success?
October and November are excellent times to climb.

How many climbers are on this expedition?
This trip usually has 6-8 climbers.

Will I be sharing a tent or lodging with other climbers?
On the climb you will be sharing expedition tents. You will share rooms on this expedition in town but you can pay a higher fee for single rooms. Contact our office for information on single room supplements.

How much will my pack weigh?
40 lbs.

What gear will I need?
Please review the gear list.

How does your gear rental system work?
All rental gear will be mailed to the climber prior to the climb. Climbers are expected to clean all rental gear. Those requesting rental gear must submit an expedition rental form with payment by fax or mail. Return gear to us by mail following the expedition.

Any further advice on gear and using your gear list?
While all items are required there may be times when some of the items on the gear list may not be used (such as warm weather or changing conditions). The gear lists are created by the guides to assist in having climbers be prepared 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.

How is drinking water treated?
Water is either boiled or treated with a water purification solution like iodine or a chlorine.

What will the meals on the expedition be like?
Time spent in town you may enjoy authentic Mexican food and while on the mountain dinner foods like pasta and rice are served. Breakfasts consist of nutritious hot or cold cereals.

Can I bring some food from home?
You may bring power bars, Gu, or similar high energy foods. All meals will be provided on this climb.

Are there any innoculation requirements?
Not at this time.

What is the best air route to my destination?
Detailed flight information will be sent upon registration.

When should I book my flight? Do I need to use your Travel Agent?
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 on-line 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

Where do I meet my guides?
Your guide or an Alpine Ascents representative will meet you at the airport. Look for a large Alpine Ascents sign.

What if I arrive early or depart late? Can you arrange extra night lodging? Is there a single room option for this expedition?
We are happy to make arrangements such as personalized tours, extra hotels rooms, airport pick ups and arrange for 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).

Are there any entry or Visa requirements?
Not at this time.

Is there any communication while we are on the mountain?
In the cities and in hotels telephones are readily available. Our guide carries a cell phone while on the mountain.

Where can I get more information on history, books, and additional activities in the region?
Many books are available on Mexico’s history.

Can I contact the others on the climb? How about the guide?
You can always call our offices and a guide will contact you, generally about 1 month before your trip departure. 30 days prior to departure, we mail a list of other team members to you.

How much should I budget for this expedition? How much cash should I plan to bring?
$500 should easily cover any extra expenses and tips. Most climbers prefer to bring about $1000 and have credit cards.

How much should I tip my guide and staff?
Guides are permitted to accept and greatly appreciate tips. Contact our office for specific guidelines for your trip.

How do I register for this expedition? What paperwork do I need to send in?
You may register online or call our offices with a credit card or mail/fax an application with a check or credit card number.

When is the money due for this expedition? What kind of payment do you except?
We accept MasterCard, Visa, American Express, personal checks and Alpine Ascents gift certificates. To reserve a space the deposit is $500 balances are due 120 days prior to departure. Unpaid balances can result in forfeiture of place on trip.

What is your cancellation policy? What is your refund policy?
CANCELLATION AND REFUND POLICY: Note: Alpine Ascents International highly recommends trip cancellation insurance for all programs.
Due to the nature and heavy costs of government and operator permits, Alpine Ascents International must adhere to a stringent refund policy. Specific brochure cancellation and refund policies may supercede those enumerated below.
Each deposit, regardless of amount, includes a $200.00 non-refundable registration fee.
Full refunds, less registration fee, will be provided 120-days prior to course, trek and/or expedition date.
50% refunds will be provided 90-120 days prior to course, trek and/or expedition date.
No refunds will be provided 89-days prior to course, trek and/or expedition date.
All refund requests must be made in writing and be received in our office within the 90-day period, as stated above.
All balances are due 120 days prior to departure date unless otherwise specified.
Participants whose balances are not received by the 120-day deadline as stated above, risk forfeiture of their place on the expedition.

What happens if I need to leave the expedition early?
This climb takes us to different locations, 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.

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