Ruco Pichincha

Ruco Pichincha, Ecuador

Ruco Pichincha

Ecuador

 Elevation:

Highest Summit:4698m
Quito:2800m
Low "Teleferico" st.:2983m
High "Teleferico" st.:3992m
Rock ridge foot:4436m
Sand slopes foot:4514m
Rock door:4656m

Description

Ruco Pichincha or “Rucu” Pichincha, means “old” Pichincha. The Ruco is part of the old Pichincha volcano, whose caldera seems to have been found towards the western side, limited on that flank by Cerro Ladrillos and Padre Encantado. Its proximity to Quito and its ease to get close with the cableway, make it a favorite training spot for many mountain lovers in Quito. The Ruco is a rocky peak easy to conquer following the sandy route and somewhat more demanding along the rock edges (“Las Agujas”) route, it offers interesting climbing possibilities although the rock can be loose in some sections.

Teleférico Quito
Teleférico Quito
Trail to the Ruco Pichincha
Trail to the Ruco Pichincha
"Las Agujas" route

Location

Western Cordillera; 8.5 kilometers in a straight line west of Quito. There are three routes to approach the Ruco Pichincha:

1) Normal Approach “Teleférico”: It's without a doubt the fastest way to ascend the Ruco Pichincha. Take a taxi to the Teleferico Quito station (cableway); the ascent to the High Station takes approximately 18 minutes, the hike starts in paramo at almost 4000 meters high.

2) “Antenas” Approach: Iñaquito Alto neighborhood, to the west of Mañosca and Av. Antonio Jose de Sucre. There begins the road to the “Antenas del Pichincha” ( pichincha antennae). This road is closed for private vehicles; however, it can be used by bicycles or walkers. This hike to the Ruco Pichincha lasts at least four hours longer than the cableway route.

3) “Padre Encantado” Approach: This route starts at the Guagua Pichincha refuge. Take the road to Lloa in the south of Quito, La Mena 2 neighborhood, Angamarca street. It's possible to take a bus to this town; and there rent a pickup truck - taxi that sometimes reach the Guagua Pichincha refuge. The road is paved and in good conditions until Lloa, later paved and ballasted to the Guagua Pichincha refuge. It is advisable to go in 4×4 vehicles, especially the last part. The hike starts next to the Guagua Pichincha refuge, taking a trail to the Padre Encantado, Cerro Ladrillos and Ruco Pichincha. This route is known as "La Integral de los Pichinchas".

ViaKilometersTime
“Teleférico” Approach:
Low "Teleferico" st. – High "Teleferico" st.2.5km18min
High "Teleferico" st. – Ruco Pichincha Summittrekking3-4h
“Padre Encantado” Approach:
La Mena 2 – Lloa10km13min
Lloa – Guagua Pichincha refuge14.5km50min
Refuge – Ruco Pichincha - Teleféricotrekking6-7h

Recommendations

  • One day is usually required to climb the summit of this mountain.
  • The Teleférico operating hours are from 9am to 8pm tuesday to thursday, from 8am to 8pm friday to monday, may change depending on the season. Ascent or descent time: 18 minutes. Maximum return time: 7:30pm.
  • The Teleférico cost is 4.99 adults, 2.99 children, 2.50 disabled and seniors. To be favored with this rate it is necessary to present the Ecuadorian citizenship card. Pets and bicycles are allowed for an additional fee.
  • Weekends and holidays may have long queues. There is the option to purchase an express ticket for a price of $ 8.50 adults and $ 7.00 children and seniors. This ticket allows to embark quickly. All foreigners or Ecuadorians without a citizenship card must present this ticket.
  • Additional Teleférico information: Teleferiqo Quito
  • The cableway climbs 1000 meters in just 18 minutes; It is possible for some people to feel the altitude sickness.
  • The Teleferico viewpoints will give you excellent views of Quito and the surrounding mountains.
  • Hiking lovers can follow some trails. One of them leads through an easy and well signposted path to the summit of the Ruco Pichincha (Arenal Route).
  • Cycling lovers have some downhill choices. Take into account that the bicycle pays an additional fee at the Teleférico.
  • Other activities at this place: climbing and paragliding.

Hiking

There are some attractive routes:
  • High "Teleferico" st. tourist circuit
  • Ascent to the Ruco Pichincha summit from the Teleférico
  • Ascent to the Ruco Pichincha summit from the "antenas"
  • Trekking "Integral del Pichincha": Guagua Pichincha - Padre Encantado - Cerro Ladrillos - Ruco Pichincha
  • Trekking Nono - Ruco Pichincha
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Flora

Pappobolus imbaburensis
Pappobolus imbaburensis
Erygium humile
Erygium humile
Calamagrostis intermedia
Calamagrostis intermedia

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