NEVADO DEL TOLIMA SUMMIT ATTEMPT (5220m) 4 DAYS – 3 NIGHTS

Description

A spectacular trek atop a sleeping volcano!
From $1,299,000 COP Colombian Pesos

The Tolima volcano is perhaps the most attractive mountain to trek and climb in Colombia. Its conical volcanic shape makes it the perfect scenic backdrop for outdoor sports. It is located inside the Los Nevados National Park and rises to 5220m. This experience passes through several Colombian ecosystems, offering the chance to truly appreciate some of Colombia’s highest mountains.

Day 1: Cocora Valley – Up to the Páramo

6am: Our starting point is the Cocora Valley, a sacred place which has the world’s tallest wax palm trees. Trekking through the beautiful cloud forest, we will cross over six bridges, visiting the Acaime Natural Reserve – a sanctuary for hummingbirds – and then continuing on until the farm, ‘Estrella de Agua’ (Water Star, at an altitude of 3100m). 9 km. Estimated time 3.5 hours.

12.30pm: After the lunch, we’ll continue on the trail from Estrella de Agua, reaching the otherworldly páramo ecosystem, an ecosystem considered vital for providing fresh water and sustaining life and only found in four other countries in the world. It is then on to the farm ‘La Primavera’ where we will sleep for the night.

DAY 2: Base camp & acclimatization

8am: After a delicious breakfast, we’ll start the trek from the La Primavera farm to Base Camp at 4400m. This day is easier than the first and consists of a more relaxed walk, a useful way to acclimatize the body to the altitude. After midday, we arrive at Base Camp to have some rest for the day and prepare ourselves for the next day’s summit attempt. The glacier equipment will be organized and instructions about its proper use will be given.

Day 3: Summit attempt

2:00am: We’ll wake up very early, have some tea and something to eat, then make our way to the glacier in order to complete the summit attempt (5220m). This attempt is divided into three main sections: The first is leaving the camp and taking a steep, sandy slope that will lead us to a large flat zone. The second section is hiking through an area of huge rocks that a few short years ago were covered by the glacier. We will climb with caution on some spots before arriving at the last section, the glacier. Here we will use the equipment and face the last kilometers to the summit. The glacier segment will take around two hours to reach the summit and then about 45 minutes to descend.

Estimated time to the summit and return to base camp: 7 hours.

1pm: After having a short break back at the camp, we will pack up and start descending to La Primavera farm to arrive there mid-afternoon.

 

Day 4: Back to Salento

7am: Today we will descend to the Cocora Valley, taking a different route from our ascent, along the Cardenas River canyon, rich in fauna and flora. From there, we will reach one of Quindío’s oldest and most traditional towns, Salento.

Basic needed equipment:
    • Sunglasses with high-quality UV filter (not using them can cause eye damage and temporary blindness from the glacier).
    • Head-torch
    • Water bottle and any other hydrating beverage.
    • Appropriate clothing following the three layers theory for mountain climbing.
    • A cap to protect against the sun.
    • A warm hat, gloves, spare socks.
    • High-SPF, high quality sunscreen (SPF 30+).
    • Trekking poles (optional).
    • Mountain or trekking boots.
    • A day backpack between 20 to 40 liters.
    • Any personal medication you require and personal health care items.

    NOTE: Please try to pack as lightly as you can.

Included:
  • Emergency assistance insurance.
  • All meals from lunch on Day 1 to lunch on Day 4.
  • Two nights accommodation in a mountain refuge (farm).
  • Private transport from Salento to Cocora and from Cocora to Salento.
  • Professional mountain guide.
  • Cooking equipment (stove, pans, etc.) for our camping night.
  • All required glacier equipment (helmet, harness, ice pick, crampons, carabiner).
  • All trip logistics.
  • Mules to carry heavy backpacks, food and equipment for Days 1, 2, 3 and 4.
  • Water purification.
  • Trekking poles (if required).
  • Sleeping bag and tent.
NOT included

Any extra items or individual purchases not specified above.

TAILOR-MADE OPTIONAL EXTRAS (before or after):
  • A tour of a traditional coffee farm.
  • A visit to some hot springs.
  • A visit to Filandia, one of the most beautiful traditional towns in the coffee triangle.
  • Hiking or horse riding through the cave tunnels to the Boquia waterfall.


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