Ascent of Volcán Atitlán on 2013-08-16

Climber: Michel Buchs

Date:Friday, August 16, 2013
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Bus
Peak:Volcán Atitlán
    Elevation:11604 ft / 3536 m

Ascent Trip Report

Me and my friend Kevin did this Hike now in the rainy season. That means you need to be on the summit for sunrise, after that the clouds will start to built up and you will have no view!

We split the hike in 2 days. First day we started in Panachajel, where you can either take a boat to San Lucas Toliman (20-25QZ) or a pickup near the market place. Be aware that there are not many boats going between Pana and Toliman! We arrived at 10am on Friday and there was no boat anymore! They only leave early in the morning and late in the afternoon for the workers.
So we took a collectivo bus for 3QZ up to Godinez. There we changed to a pickup to Toliman for another 3QZ. That took at least 1h!
Consider that... you will get to Toliman, where you can start your hike right away up to the saddle.
You will meed lots of Guatemalan People collecting Wood, very nice People!
On the saddle you will find corn fields. We walked a few meters away from the trail to find a hidden spot for our tent.
Our campspot was at N14.601138" W91.184235 . The ground is not very flat, but for a few hours of sleep it was ok!
You can also keep going up to N14.598906" W91.186579 , there is a flat spot to camp, also at N14.593739" W91.187442 that is even higher up! Be aware that there is lots of trash at those upper campspots!
The first part of the trail up to the saddle (about 1000m) is not very steep, it was a pretty easy hike.

We left at 2am the next morning and did the 2nd part up to the summit. This 1000m was pretty to very steep. On the last few 100m there are no trees anymore and the ground is very loose volcanic rocks! So be careful there.
At the top is LOTS of trash, but the view is amazing!
You can hike the complete 2000m afterwards. We were lucky and got a boat after 1h of waiting, but they initially didn't wanted to go anymore! But it was also sunday, so less traffic!

It was a great hike! Doable in 1 day? Yeah, but you need to be pretty fit for that and you can't do it in the rainy season except you want to hike up through the whole night.

Security wise we heard from a few locals and a former guide that it's safe. Also the road is safe from Pana to Toliman. The San Pedro is supposed to be less safe.
We never felt unsafe and People on the hike up to the saddle were all super nice. After the saddle till we came down we did see nobody!

On I will post pictures on our Guatemala Journal.
Summary Total Data
    Quality:5 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Unmaintained Trail
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles
    Nights Spent:1 nights away from roads
    Weather:Cool, Calm, Partly Cloudy
it was a little bit hazy
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Michel Buchs
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

Download this GPS track as a GPX file

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