Expedition to La Malinche (Tlaxcala)
- Duration: 1 or 2 days
- Altitude: 4,440 meters (14,567 feet)
- Vertical gain: 1,350 meters (4,430 feet)
- Total distance: 16 kilometers (9.9 miles)
- Total time: 7 hours (ascent 4, descent 3)
- Terrain: simple
- Three hours of aerobic exercise per week
La Malinche or Matlatcuéyetl is a 4,440 meter volcano (14,567 feet) in the state of Tlaxcala, less than an hour away from Puebla, and two and a half hours from Mexico City.
It is a great mountain to get started as a mountaineer, as its classic route is technically simple. It does require good physical condition, though: the vertical gain is over 1,250 meters, and the distance is about 16 kilometers round trip. The average duration is between six and eight hours, it does depend on the fitness level of each participant.
This volcano is often climbed as a preparation for one of the nearby five thousanders, Iztaccíhuatl o Pico de Orizaba, because it allows us to spend quite some time above 4,000 meters.
From the parking lot of the Centro Vacacional “La Malintzi”, we walk for several kilometers through a beautiful forest, which takes as to the tree line, at about 4,000 meters, where the trees just disappear.
After a short break, we start up a slope that leads to the summit ridge, at 4,350 meters. From the ridge we climb a rocky section, where the use of helmet is mandatory. Half an hour later we reach a false summit, from where we contemplate the impressive crater of this volcano. From there we still climb eight additional meters, and reach the summit.
On a clear day, we have a breathtaking view of the three main Mexican volcanoes, Iztaccíhuatl, Popocatépetl and Citlaltépetl or Pico de Orizaba. The descent is done along the same ascent route.
One Day Equipment
- Dryfit underwear
- Trekking boots or sports shoes and socks
- Polartech-like pants and jacket
- Goretex or similar pants and jacket
- Winter and sun hats
- Bandana or Buff (optional)
- Helmet (provided by AdvenCulture)
- Crampons (provided by AdvenCulture if needed)
- Walking poles (can be rented from AdvenCulture)
- Sun glasses
- Sun & lip screen
- 2 liters of water or sports drink
- Medium-size backpack (30 l)
- Your favorite snacks (for instance, sandwiches, chocolate, dried fruits, protein bars, cookies, etc)