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Mexican Volcanoes Logistics Help

Discussion area for peaks outside of the USA.
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Re: Mexican Volcanoes Logistics Help

Postby nyker » Thu Jan 17, 2013 8:51 pm

I'd also add that depending on how well you are acclimatized before you go down, 5-7 days could be too short - as you live in CO, maybe that's not a huge issue, esp. if you can get up to above 12,-14,000 on the weekends before your trip. Coming from sea level without being at 14,000 for a couple months, that would not be enough time for me to be able to get to 18,000+ feet and back. As others have mentioned, getting around in Mexico takes a while and you will spend a lot of time in traffic (especially if you opt to do Nevado de Toluca, which is in the opposite direction of the other volcanoes), but worth it as it's a cool climb and gets you to above 15,000 pretty quickly.

You probably also want a day rest before Izta and before Orizaba, so I would take a few extra days and try to enjoy the trip and not be so rushed if you can swing some more time.

Definitely check out the Pyramids that Scott recommends, they are pretty cool sites.

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Re: Mexican Volcanoes Logistics Help

Postby kaiman » Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:12 pm

Thanks for the replies everyone. I loved your descriptions Monster5 and thanks for the map info. :lol: I'm planning on adding a few days to my timeframe as from what others have said 7-10 days seems more appropriate. I will definitely plan to check out the pyramids, but will probably skip Nevado de Taluca due to its location and use La Malinche as a warmup instead.

ryker I understand your comments about altitude and plan to be as acclimated as possible before I go. That said, this will be my first climb above 14,000 feet so we'll see how I feel. I usually spend 30+ days between May and November somewhere above 12 or 13,000 feet so hopefully that will prove to be adequate.

Thanks again to everyone for all your help and I will make sure to compare ticket prices between cities before I purchase them.

Cheers!

kaiman

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Re: Mexican Volcanoes Logistics Help

Postby MountainHiker » Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:10 pm

Monster5 wrote:I think Mountainhiker or somebody has a map on SP

Orizaba Map - This photo was taken with a hand held camera of a 1:50,000 topo with 1 km UTM grid on WGS84 equivalent.
Image
http://www.14ers.com/images/userpics/2013/u4722p90_130117220215.jpg larger file

Izta Map
This map was made from the 1:50,000 topo that covers Izta & Popo. I enlarged it 2X on a photocopier and added some labels for features and contours. It was necessary for me to heavy up the UTM grid. Map datum is NAD27 Mexico. If you print this on 8.5 x 14 the scale should be close to 1:25000.
Image
Izta Map Full size image
http://images.summitpost.org/original/377336.jpg

Izta Trip report
http://www.summitpost.org/iztaccihuatl-utm/377355

La Malinche trip report
http://www.summitpost.org/la-malinche-with-utm/376073

La Malinche map at this link
http://www.bicimapas.com.mx/Malinche_Blair.htm
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Re: Mexican Volcanoes Logistics Help

Postby kaiman » Fri Jan 18, 2013 10:03 am

MountainHiker wrote:
Monster5 wrote:I think Mountainhiker or somebody has a map on SP


Thanks Mountainhiker I was hoping to hear from you. I enjoyed reading your TRs on summitpost and the comments about purchasing maps were quite helpful. A quick search on omnimap.com has turned up a few options so I will try to contact them and see what is available. I currently don't own a GPS (I know I'm low tech for an IT guy) and prefer the old map and compass routine (that's just what I grew up learning as a kid through Outward Bound, NOLS, etc), but my climbing partner does have a Garmin so I will pass the GPS info on to him.

Thanks again for all your assistance,

kaiman
"I want to keep the mountains clean of racism, religion and politics. In the mountains this should play no role."

- Joe Stettner

"Climb if you will, but remember that courage and strength are nought without prudence, and that a momentary negligence may destroy the happiness of a lifetime. Do nothing in haste; look well to each step; and from the beginning think what may be the end."

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Re: Mexican Volcanoes Logistics Help

Postby MountainHiker » Fri Jan 18, 2013 11:50 am

kaiman wrote:
MountainHiker wrote:
Monster5 wrote:I think Mountainhiker or somebody has a map on SP


Thanks Mountainhiker I was hoping to hear from you. I enjoyed reading your TRs on summitpost and the comments about purchasing maps were quite helpful. A quick search on omnimap.com has turned up a few options so I will try to contact them and see what is available. I currently don't own a GPS (I know I'm low tech for an IT guy) and prefer the old map and compass routine (that's just what I grew up learning as a kid through Outward Bound, NOLS, etc), but my climbing partner does have a Garmin so I will pass the GPS info on to him.

Thanks again for all your assistance,

kaiman

If you are unable to scare up originals I could make some photocopies and mail them to you.
Red, Rugged, and Rotten: The Elk Range - Borneman & Lampert

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Re: Mexican Volcanoes Logistics Help

Postby kaiman » Sun Jan 20, 2013 12:51 pm

MountainHiker wrote:If you are unable to scare up originals I could make some photocopies and mail them to you.


Thanks for the offer MountainHiker, I will keep it in mind.

I have a couple more questions for everyone:

Just out of curiosity, I am wondering if you could give me a rough estimate on what you spent per person (minus airfare) on your trips? I just want an idea to give my climbing partners.

Also, did you bring any food with you before leaving the states or do all your shopping in Mexico?

Finally were you able to find fuel for your stoves (I have a JetBoil) in Puebla or did you have to purchase it in Mexico City before catching the bus?

Thanks again for the help,

kaiman
"I want to keep the mountains clean of racism, religion and politics. In the mountains this should play no role."

- Joe Stettner

"Climb if you will, but remember that courage and strength are nought without prudence, and that a momentary negligence may destroy the happiness of a lifetime. Do nothing in haste; look well to each step; and from the beginning think what may be the end."

- Edward Whymper

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Re: Mexican Volcanoes Logistics Help

Postby MountainHiker » Sun Jan 20, 2013 5:36 pm

I didn’t take a stove because I treated each mountain as a day climb. So there was no need to think about food weight or dehydrated stuff. I took things like Gu and bars, but bought most of my food in Mexico - fruit, packaged sliced meat, cheese, bread, large jugs of water etc.

For Izta, supplies are easy because there is both a modern grocery store and a market on the main square. The bus stop, park office and San Carlos Hotel are also on or near this same square.

La Malinche: the colectivo stand in Apizaco is on the main street near where you can buy supplies. We did have to walk a few blocks with our stuff from the bus stop.

For Orizaba and Toluca I traveled with a group large enough to hire transportation at a reasonable per person cost, so we had the driver stop on the way where we bought supplies. Toluca is near a large city by the same name so there will be lots of place to buy food.

It’s hard to say a per person cost because I’ve both traveled by bus and with an informally organized group that hired vehicles. Buses are cheap but hiring vehicles can be hundreds of dollars per leg.

Even when we’ve gone cheap we usually stayed in a nice hotel near the Mexico City airport on the first and last nights. Those rooms can be > $100. When we did La Malinche the cabin was also around that same cost. In Toluca, I forget exactly but the hotel was mid range price.

Orizaba, you need to figure in transportation from Tlachichuca to the hut. Way back in 93 it was only $20 per person, but there were seven of us negotiating. In 06 I forget what we paid Senor Reyes because we also spent the night at the Soap Factory and had some meals. You could contact them for a quote and verify the services they can provide.
http://www.servimont.com.mx/english/

Also in Mexico City you might need to take a taxi to get to TAPO bus station from the airport. I forget the cost, but those aren’t as cheap as they used to be. There’s a zone system for charging. The subway is really cheap but probably not a good option while dragging gear. We did use the subway for travel within the city.

Each of my Mexico trips has been relatively short. Orizaba 1993, Izta 1994, Toluca & Orizaba 2006, La Malinche & Izta 2008. Each time we allowed a day or two for site seeing. Since we had hired transportation for Toluca we also saw the Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve. Mexico City has several historic sites including the pyramids at Teotihuacan.

It looks like you are looking at a longer time estimate. That is good. Aside from travel time and possible weather days, don’t underestimate recovery after Izta. Although Orizaba is higher, Izta can be a bigger day.
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Re: Mexican Volcanoes Logistics Help

Postby Gabriel » Mon Jan 21, 2013 9:26 am

If you fly into Mexico City, take the Estrella Roja bus line which leaves hourly to Puebla directly from the terminal. If you plan to use Puebla as your base, which I recommend, go to the 4poiniente station as it,s closer to the historic district, hotels etc. If you plan to go directly to Tlach, go to the CAPU bus station and connect with the Verdes bus line to Tlach.

La Malinche is an easy day hike using public transport from Puebla. Last time I hiked it I was back in Puebla in the early afternoon.

You can also access Itza from Puebla by taking a bus and then taxi to Paso Cortes and then following the standard route. Some choose to stay at the hut, but it's doable in a day round trip from Puebla if you leave early.

For Orizaba you can take a standard 2 wheel drive taxi to where the 4X4 road starts for a few bucks and then hike up to the hut. Of course you can also pay more and have one of the 4X4 taxis take you to the hut. Orizaba is possible in a very long day round trip from Puebla if you can get a 4x4taxi to take you from Puebla. Poblano climbers are known to to this on the weekend.

Have fun,

G

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Re: Mexican Volcanoes Logistics Help

Postby Gabriel » Mon Jan 21, 2013 9:29 am

Forgot to mention that the most convenient way to do this is to fly directly from Houston to Puebla Hermanos Serdan airport.

G

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Re: Mexican Volcanoes Logistics Help

Postby CO Native » Mon Jan 21, 2013 12:01 pm

Great info in this thread. In doing research for doing Orizaba in March I found that I could rent a car for $120 for a week and the cheapest airfare was into Veracruz. Has anyone tried this option? Splitting $120 between three people makes the car option pretty tempting with the flexibility it adds.
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Re: Mexican Volcanoes Logistics Help

Postby mtnjim » Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:18 pm

Don't overlook the expense of liability insurance when renting a car in Mexico. You can use credit card rental insurance for damage to the rented car but all the rental agencies at MEX will require you to buy liability insurance through them. They won't accept 3rd party insurance even from a Mexican company. I would be very surprised if that isn't true of the airport rental companies at VER. Thrifty at MEX charges $12US/day for 500,000pesos or $17US for 1000000pesos liability. It always costs me more for the insurance than for the car!

I've rented a car for my 5 trips down there in the last year and a half for the convenience and flexibility. Just be sure to take or rent a gps. I haven't found driving in Mexico to be much different than in the US. At least outside of Mexico City, drivers are more courteous than in the US. I have driven to the MEX in Monday morning rush hour traffic and didn't find it much more traumatic than Denver rush hour.

JimS

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Re: Mexican Volcanoes Logistics Help

Postby herdbull » Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:27 pm

If you have specific questions on Orizaba shoot me a pm. I just flew in last night from my trip down there. I went solo and summited without a guide but used the Cancholas for transportation and accommodations. They came highly recommended from others here and they definitely lived up to their reputation and will treat you like family.

You'll definitely need 8-10 days and don't listen to Monster5. That route he's talking about is not "in" and hasn't been all year. If you use a guide service expect to be in rope teams. At least on Orizaba but I don't think a guide is necessary. The bus system in Mexico is quite good and organized I would that if you could. Heck, if a solo gringo can fly into Mex City and do this trip alone anyone can :-D

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