[12/08/08~18(D+353) Ecuador/Quito to Chimborazo] Mount Climbing with tearful eyes

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When I leave Quito, their festival starts. It is too difficult to get out of the city. I get lost so many times. I thank that some family gives me ride to out of city.





There is downhill as I get out of the city. Today I start from an altitude of 3,000 m (9842 ft) and going to altitude of 27,000 m (8858 ft). But I have to go up again to altitude of 3,000 m (9842 ft). In Quito, I readjusted position of handle bar and the seat, because I had had pain with the neck if I rode a bike long time. Maybe that’s why I have too much pain with my hips today. I need the time to adapt it.


Today surprising thing happens. Usually rich house mind when I ask for tent, but today old couple permits me to set up my tent in their yard. Even when I take out my tent from bag, they ask me to sleep inside.


This house is hers and he is her boyfriend. They look so sweet.


She loves to write poem, and she also published the book.


She said I should sleep beside the heater. I thank so much that I have a cold a little bit.


Today my schedule on Andes Mountain: 3,000 m (9842 ft) – 3500 m (11482 ft) – 2700 m (8858 ft)




Andes Mountain which spread endlessly




It is not steep, but altitude is too much high that I push my bike so many hours.


I meet Germans. They say they climbed Cotopaxi (from 4,800 m (15,748 ft) to summit 5,800 m(19,028)) yesterday. It seems that they are really stronger, because they ride a bike today after climbing very high mount. Also they starts cycling 3 months ago from US. For me from US it takes 11 months to here.


Boys ride on the middle of the road! I think I meet them around 3,500 m (11482 ft) which is the hardest part today. On the downhill, I feel so cold.


I stay one night in Local people’s home. Today is special day because of The Perseid meteor shower. I am lucky that the place I stay is out of the town.


But I can’t see many shooting stars. After midnight, there is cloudy. I am too sick to sleep with acute pharyngitis.


After long night, the morning starts.


Today morning is special that the friend rides a bike with me over a few hours. I usually don’t ride a back road because I have too much fear. But thanks to friend, I enjoy riding at small road.


In this small town, it seems that Ice Cream is popular.


Guinea Pig


It is Guinea Pig (Picture is from internet)




It is 2.5$. So yummy!


Today my riding is up and down on Andes Mountain.


Local family!


Local people is on Vacation.


I arrive in Ambato at afternoon. I stay in Local people home for two nights.


Friend gives me gift which is made in his company.


He has little baby.


It is my host for three days in Ambato.


Today I start from 3,000 m (9842 ft) and go up to 3,600m(11811 ft) and go down to 2,800m(9186 ft). Cycling at an altitude of 3,600 m (11,811 ft) is my first time. Actually I push my bike most of the time because I can’t breathe well.


Around altitude of 3,600 m (11,811 ft) there is green grass land.


I can also see snow-covered mountain. It is too chilly that I feel my cold is going serious. I stay in local home in Riobamba.


In Riobamba Devil’s nose which is train is popular. A few years ago, people could sit on the top, but Japanese was died by accident whiling taking picture. After that time, nobody can sit on the top. People don’t need come Riobamba to take the train, because the train starts from Alausi. I buy ticket in Riobamba, and tomorrow I will go to there by bus to take train. The train is 25$.

Around Riobamba, there is Chimborazo Mount which is at altitude of 6,300m (20,669 ft). It is the highest mount in Ecuador. In Africa the highest mount is Kilimanjaro which is at altitude of 5,500 m (18,044 ft).
Recently I am very interested about a high mountain because I am in Andes Mountain. So I can’t stand my curiosity of it. I just pay 250$ for climbing Chimborazo. I will climb on Friday. On Friday at noon, I will go to refuge (4,800 m (15,748 ft)) by car. And then I will climb to at altitude of 5,000 m (16,404 ft) at late afternoon. And then I have to wait until 11 pm, because snow is dangerous in the day time. Also I have to go up to Summit before 8 am because snow is melting in daytime, and it will make big problem. I pay it for 250$. Am I crazy?

Actually, I just get information of Aconcagua which is altitude 6,900 m (22,637 ft). So it is like practice for that.
There is one guide for me. If I have a partner, then we pay 180$ each other for one guide. But if one of two has problem, then the other one also have to give up climbing. I don’t have a partner, so I don’t need to go down because of the other one.


I love Mango, but these days I can’t see it well, because I am riding on the mount.


I wake up early on Thursday to take the bus to Alausi. I am not sure that why I still have headache. It is that I still have cold? Yesterday I read journal of Aconcagua where is the highest mount in America, and I realized that climbing Chimborazo is crazy in one day. Because I don’t have time to acclimate mount. Even I will start climbing at 11 pm with strange guide which I’ve never met. What the hell did I decide?


It takes two hours from Riobamba to Alausi which is cute town. I can see native people on the road.


It looks like Lion.


This is ex-train. How exciting people sat on the top before.




Train station for devil’s nose.


I look around town for a little bit.


It is viewing from train. Viewing is actually not spectacle because I’ve seen it since I came to Colombia. If I have a chance to sit on the roof, it would be worth to pay 25$.


Round trip takes three hours.




Andes Mountain


It is called Devil’s nose.


There is a cow.


They give us free time for one hour. Native are dancing.




It is free lunch which is included.


I take the time to look around.


When we leave, they start dancing again. I think it is service for tourist.


When train was made, many people were died because construction was very hard. Maybe that’s why it is called Devil’s nose.


It is office of tour company. Owner recommends me to sleep on an altitude of 3,800 m (12,467ft). I get some equipment and they will pick me up tomorrow.


It is interesting that Hostel is between local homes. Local children ask me that how many animals I have. I think every house has animals in this town.


It is 10$ for one night. It is very clean and I can take shower with hot water.


It is not included in 250$ which I pay for climbing. I have an experience that I rode a bike between 3,600 m (11,811 ft). It is a little bit hard to say on at an altitude of 3800 (12,467ft). I don’t know why I have still headache. It is because of cold or mountain sickness? I’ve heard that if I have serious headache on the high mountain, I must go down. If I don’t come back, I can be died. I am worried that how I can climb to altitude of 6,00o m (19,685 ft). I wish I don’t catch cold. Anyway I’ve left my fate to Heaven.


I think only native live at here.


At 10 am, they pick me up. After 30 minutes, I arrive at the first refuge of Chimborazo. Lunch is really poor. I am wondering where my money is gone. Later I realize that another people who is going climbing is vegetarian. That’s why there is no meet in the lunch? Also here is another reason that Agency gives local guide some money. Local guide try to save money as much as he can.


After lunch, I try to sleep until 5 pm. Later I have to go up to the second refuge where is at an altitude of 5,000 m (16,404 ft). Still I have a headache.


The fog rolls in the first refuge. Before I start climbing to the second refuge, I eat rice with one piece of chicken.


I am going too slow as I start climbing. The worst thing is happened that I start having terrible headache. When I arrive to the second refuge, I take an aspirin. I am too upset that how weak I am.
After taking the rest, I wake up 10 pm and have a breakfast. I’ve heard that this is normal schedule for climbing Chimborazo.

Thanks that I don’t have headache any more. But unfortunately, there is another bad thing. I didn’t have enough meal. I’ve heard that food is the most important to climb high mountain.


I don’t have headache, but I am too weak to climb High Mountain. When I start climbing, I walk very slower. Later I have to stop every minute to breathe. Here is another problem that high mountain boots are too hard. I have too much pain with boots. Being hungry, having pain with boots and having difficulty in breathing make me so hard.


Although climbing is increasingly hard, the night sky is so clear.


He is my guide. He always waits me. The more I climb, the steeper mountain is. As I slide, he saves my life. I hang on him with rope. Finally, I acknowledge my fault. It is impossible to climb. I climb only altitude of 300 m (984 ft). It is only from 5,000m (16,404 ft) to 53,000 m (17,388)).


I am too upset and sad. When I tell my guide that I can’t go up anymore, I start crying. On three and half in the morning, I am on at altitude of 53,000 m (17,388). Stars are on my head and tears are falling from my eyes.


Some people ask why people like climbing.
In my case, I can see the nature and I look inside myself.
I can’t see the truth about myself all the time.
When I am having hard time, then I look inside myself.

And this time I look something of inside.


I am not good at cycling. I am too weak. I have too much fear that nobody can imagine.
I also decide to quit my personal Facebook. I can’t control my time when I am in Facebook.


Mount Climbing with tearful eyes

I regret that travel agency didn’t tell the truth that it is the hardest mount. Equipment is not only so poor, but also my mental is poor.

After coming back to Riobamba, I feel frustrated and having headache again.
Although I decided to quit cycling and facebook, I don’t put my plans into practice.
I only quit my personal facebook.

What did I get from this hard time? I am still confused.

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  1. Your determination is inspiring. Perhaps we all fear the things we don’t know.

  2. Hi Jin,
    You are still my inspiration! Rosa asks me all the time where you are? I am hopeful we will be able to follow your path someday soon.


    • Hello! I had some problem with recent post which you gave me comment on.
      Hi Jin It’s Mike in Las Vegas. Rosa wants to know if you have ever seen something called “Cat’s Claw”? It is shaped like a hook. It is a medicinal herb used throughout South America.
      So, I will answer at here. Hope you can read. I didn’t know “Cat’s Claw”. I just search it on online! Maybe someday I will try! 🙂 Thanks!

    • Hello Mike Eylar,

      Did you ride with Rosa, right?? It must be good!! A few days ago, I checked my video and saw you!! You are always good friend to me! 🙂

      Now I know how pronounce ‘W’!
      I got it on online!!! yeah!hahahahah

      Have a good day!


  3. Sending you energy, good thoughts and hugs for your trip. You have come so far and grown so much. I am very proud for you.

  4. 겉으론 약해보이는 분이지만, 누구보다 강한 용기와 도전을 좋아하는 마음, 실행력이 있기 때문에 결국 아무나 할수 없는 일들을 해내시는 것 같습니다. 마치 영화나 소설에서나 있을것 같은 사실을 현실로 보여주고 계시네요. 많이 울고 많이 지치고 많이 위험했지만 다 해쳐내시고 여기까지 오신거잖아요. 이제 정주행중에 Chapter.2인 남미편 읽고 있지만… 진짜 소설같은 여행이시네요.

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