Volcan Acatenango

On Dec 29, I hiked up Volcan Acatenango, just outside out Antigua, Guatemala. I asked around, and the general consensus was that hiking solo, especially as a woman, was not recommended. For this trip I went with OX Expeditions, which was a fine tour company, but Old Town Outfitters (the company that took us up Pacaya) remains my favorite. Regardless, it was a fun day, and I surprised myself by having a great time hiking with a relatively large group of approx 10 people.

My Suunto watch says it was 8 miles round trip and 6100 ft of elevation gain – a stout hike for sure, especially since we started at an altitude of 7000 ft and ascended to just over 13,000 ft. While Acatenango is definitely not family-friendly like Pacaya, it is certainly achievable as a day hike if you’re willing to do a bit of slogging and have a little Type 2 fun.

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The first mile of the hike is through corn fields. The summit of Acatenango is still out of sight, but it’s possible to catch glimpses of Atitlan (shown here). 

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Paintbrush and toilet paper – both commonly seen in the high alpine of Acatenango. We brought down 3 garbage bags full of trash, and didn’t even put a dent in things.

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Fog rolling in and out

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Misty rainbow

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Taking a break at the saddle just before the summit

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Summit push

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Volcan Agua, tucked in by clouds

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Last stretch of trail before the top

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Approaching the summit crater

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Warming our hands in volcanic vents

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Lunch in front of Volcan Fuego

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Pastoral views

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Fuego letting off a little steam

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Descending through the cloud forest

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2 Responses to Volcan Acatenango

  1. alexei says:

    Very cool, Jessica. Nice work on the clean up. I’m sure it made a difference.

    No female solo? Danger, or sexism, or a chance for locals to make some cash by guiding?

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