Paso de la Muerte (Step of Death)
- Added By: Feli Pro
- Date added: Aug 24, 2010
- Distance (km): 4.568
This route is a V in rock climbing on the hardest part. It starts by taking the Teleferico (cable car) from Quito up into the Rucu Pichincha high station at 4100 meters. The path towards the rock face heads West and it is completely marked.
From 45 to 60 minutes the rock face will be reached. The route demands a 15 to 20 minutes almost vertical climb to the top of the ridge, a small dark colored peak. This climb is significantly easy, however there is a warning for loose rock. After the peak, the path leads West again to the secondary summit of the mountain which is distinguished as the Paso de la Muerte (Path of Death). The path was given this name because of the risk of falling towards the cliff sides of Rucu Pichincha.
After other 15 or 20 minutes of walking the path is reached. A narrow rock bridge of about half a meter wide and three meters long has to be crossed, either walking or sitting. If the day is windy extra precautions should be taken. To the left side there is a 20 to 30 meter fall and to the east side about 100. After the bridge is crossed, a less that two meter overhang rock needs to be climbed. Once above this rock the path continues without danger for another 10 to 12 minutes until reaching the main summit.
Ropes and climbing gear are not necessary, however, inexperienced climbers and first timers should bring gear. Protection cracks are abundant as well as places to construct anchors.