The Condor Trek is one of Ecuador’s most beautiful treks for hiking in Ecuador (it’s also called Ecuador’s Ruta del Condor). It takes 5 days, walking about 6 to 8 hours per day. Nights are spent in cozy tents and food is prepared for you by a cook who will accompany you. Enjoy a great view of the surrounding volcanoes and the impressive paramo. You will see beautiful mountain lakes, one of the highest volcanoes in Ecuador named Antisana (18,714 ft) and maybe, with a bit of luck, the biggest bird of the Andes, the condor. With a professional mountain guide and his staff you will have an unforgettable experience with this hiking in Ecuador tour.
Highlights: Camp in the beautiful Ecuadorian Andes, see snow-covered volcanos up close
Number of days: 5
Interests: Hiking & Trekking, Nature & Wildlife
Total CO2 emission, in lb (per day for cruises): 140
Click on the icons to see details about each visited place.
Day 1: Beginning of the Condor Trek
In the morning you go to El Tambo, a small village close to Papallacta at an altitude of 11,200 feet, where the horses that will carry the gear wait for your arrival. After loading the horses the journey begins. On this day you will mainly hike on muddy paths and cross small streams, so you will need rubber boots. The first camp site will be at the shore of a small lake, “Laguna del Volcán.” The hiking time is about 6 hours depending on the weather and the hikers’ physical condition.
Day 2: Antisana Volcano
After breakfast the ascent to the second camp site, at the foot of the Antisana at 13,500 ft, begins. The first two hours lead through muddy terrain and small forests to the Páramo, where there are no more trees, but the typical Páramo vegetation. From here on the ground is much drier. After hiking for about four more hours you will have a wonderful view on the Antisana’s glacier. You go on past the Santa Lucía Lake and reach the second camp site, in a valley which is crossed by a small stream.
Day 3: Volcano Sincholagua
Early in the morning you will leave the camp at the foot of Antisana and walk towards the glacier. The inclination is moderate. While you hike up you can enjoy the beauty of the Ecuadorian Paramo. Look out for condors, caracaras and the Andean fox. Then you leave the Paramo and continue the ascent through the moraine of the old glacier, with a wonderful view of the Antisana’s south and central peak, and far away the Cotopaxi, Sincholagua, Rumiñahui and Cayambe. Today’s camping is at the foot of the Sincholagua. Hiking time is approximately 7-8 hours.
Day 4: Camp Río Pita
Today you start your hike early in the morning again. The hike leads you through different regions of the high Paramo, passing cows, rabbits, deer and different species of birds. From the pass at 14,800 ft. you can see the valley of Limpiopungo and the majestic Cotopaxi. From here you follow a long descent. You spend the night at the camp by the Río Pita.
Day 5: Cotopaxi Volcano
On your last day you will do a hike at the volcano Cotopaxi (19,347 ft.), which is the highest active volcano of the world. On your way you will visit the Laguna de Limpiopungo. From there you have a beautiful view of the surrounding volcanoes Cotopaxi, Sincholagua und Rumiñahui. You reach the parking site and can start a hike to the refuge José Ribas at 15,750 feet, where you can warm yourself up with a cup of coffee or tea. After your hike you will return to Quito.
Price per person: US$ 1,125
(based on 2 people traveling)
- 2-person tent
- professional English-speaking mountain guide
- full board
- tent for kitchen and toilet
- boiled water, dishes and cutlery
- rubber boots
- Pack Horse
- personal expenses
- personal trekking equipment
- optional excursions and activities
- personal travel insurance
You will sleep in tents. You won’t have to carry the equipment yourself, horses will be there to carry it. We will also have a kitchen tent, a bathroom tent and a cook.
Hiking in Ecuador is a true adventure! But you don’t need to be an experienced mountaineer to hike Ecuador’s Ruta del Condor. You just need to have a good physical condition and spend a few days in the altitude before, for example in Quito.
Wondering what to pack? Check out our packing list. It includes a section on what to bring for a tour of hiking in Ecuador.
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