Trekking around Quito. Summit Three Mountains In One Day
“Los Pichinchas” is a range of mountains in the western side of the city of Quito, the capital of Ecuador. Three summits are the most important: “Rucu Pichincha” (4,680m), “Guagua Pichincha” (4,698m) and “Padre Encantado” (4,570 m). These mountains are very helpful when you feel or get lost in Quito. If you look up from almost anywhere in the city , you will see the mountains and you will know how to go west.
As one of our Barefoot Expeditions guests said:
you live with a 4000 m mountain in our backyard, that can be climbed after working hours, not many people in the world have that!
In this area, there is a trekking route that starts in the heart center of the city, goes towards the Teleferico, through the summit of the three peaks -Rucu Pichincha, Padre Encantado and Guagua Pichincha- and ends in the town of Lloa in the south-western side of the city. From there you can take a van back to the south-center part of the city for 50 cents. It is a great itinerary for acclimatisation or training.
It can be done in one or two days, but on either case you have to be very careful because in the last few months there is a person with a gun that is stealing things from tourists. The best strategy to avoid this kind of situations is to go in a big group and stay together during the trekking.
Last weekend, we went with a group of 9 people and we were surprised to find police officers taking care of tourists and hikers at least until the base of the Rucu Pichincha. It is weird to see uniforms up there, but it helps you to feel safe.