Mexico volcano climbing expedition w/ SJC dispatch 1

Unbeknownst to many, in far southern Mexico lie some of the tallest  peaks in North America! This March the San Juan College Outdoor Leadership and Recreation proram will venture into Mexcio to climb two volcanos.  Our first objective of the trip is Volcan Istaccihual or Izta.  This is North America’s 8th tallest peak at 5230 meters or 17,159 feet above sea level.  Our second objective is Volcan Citlalepel or Pico De Orizaba.  At 5636 meters or 18,491 feet above sea level, Pico as it is called, is the continents third tallest peak.

This expedition is slightly different than a traditional commercially guided trip.  What set’s it apart is that this trip is a High Altitude Mountaineering course with SJC.  When compared with a traditional guided trip, the SJC trip is packed full with education!  The hope is that this course will better prepare the students for their own adventure latter on.  Some of the extra material we cover include; Powerpoint presentation on high altitude medical issues, involving the participants in expedition menu planning, helping participants with pre expedition workout schedule,  walking participants through the climbing shop to help with purchases, and more!  To learn more about some of the other San Juan College courses click here!

These volcanoes are all located a short drive from east of Mexico City. These massive volcanoes of Iztaccihuatl and El Pico de Orizaba tower over the lowlands below. Pico is roughly 60 miles from the Gulf city of Veracruz.and. From the top it offers unsurpassed views of the grasslands sitting 11,000 ft below! Popocatepetl, The Smoking Mountain, is the fifth highest peak in North America with an elevation of 17,887 feet. Due to recent volcanic activity though, it is off limits to climbing. Iztaccihuatl is the eighth tallest peak in North America. It is known as The Sleeping Lady and stands 17,159 ft above sea level. It also offers interesting and varied climbing. Our volcano climbing expeditions to Orizaba and Iztaccihuatl combine an excellent mix of climbing and culture. Over and over this trip demonstrates that the Mexican volcanoes are an excellent introduction to high altitude mountaineering!

On  March 19, 2011, our group will meet at the Albuequeqre international Sunport and begin our journey south!

The team consists of the following folks:

Josh Kling; Lead Instructor and Owner/ Lead Guide for Kling Mountain Guides

Josh Stratman; 1st Assistant and Director of the San Juan College Health and Human Performance Center

JD Taner; 2nd Assistant and Coordinator of Outdoor Recreation at San Juan College

Bill Cartwright from Durango, CO

John Bregar from Durango, CO

Alex Winterlee from Farmington, NM

Nathan Henkenius from Farmington, NM

Laurie Zuehlsdorff from Farmington, NM

Connie Wian from Durango, CO

Nathanal Jim from Farmington, NM

Please keep in mind that communication from the big mountains can be challenging and occasionally intermittent. We will post updates as often as possible, but please keep in mind the old adage, “NO NEWS IS GOOD NEWS!” when it comes to communications.

The sole intent of this dispatch blog is to keep you up to date on your friends’ and loved ones’ progress while on the expedition.  The purpose of providing detailed contact information is in the event of a family emergency.  Please use restraint in attempting to contact the team unless it is a true emergency. This is especially important when we are on the mountain, as the logistics to get the team a message is monumental.   If there is a absolute emergency message that needs to get to one of the climbers you can contact Marcel Bieg; Coordinator, Outdoor Leadership, Recreation and Education Program at San Juan College-

Phone: (505)566-3113 E-mail: [email protected]



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