Volcan Misti
Volcan Misti
4.5

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Nissim Baker
Singapore, Singapore46 contributions
Oct 2022
A place for the delight of the eyes. The misti and its layer of snow is a mandatory place for a Peruvian. The air is dry and the climate pleasant. Totally recommended for all types of national or foreign public.
You have to bring water and a good coat because it is quite cold.
Written November 29, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Aaron T
Arequipa, Peru1 contribution
Sep 2013 • Solo
I climbed El Misti on 22/23 September 2013 with two family members. We booked our expedition with Wasi Tours on Calle Santa Catalina in Arequipa. Our experience was very positive.

Our guide showed up at the agency 20 minutes late on the day of our tour, but otherwise everything went smoothly. We walked a few blocks to another shop where we met the other members of our group. We were 8 climbers in total. I had my own sleeping bag, gloves, and hat, but these would have been provided if needed. The guide gave me a tent, ground pad, parka, snow pants, and a head-mounted flashlight. I paid a bit extra to rent a backpack and walking sticks. I do recommended that when booking the tour, one should ask the agent to write down *all* included supplies, meals, etc. on the receipt. The guide was surprised when I told him that I had been promised a flashlight, but when I showed him my receipt he promptly found flashlights for me and my two companions.

Included supplies vary depending on where you book your expedition. Some agencies include sleeping bags and clothing, some do not. Again, one should ask exactly which supplies are included, and make sure it is put in writing. Regarding meals and water, I found that every tour agency in Arequipa promised two meals only (a basic dinner on day 1 and a basic breakfast on day 2) and recommended carrying 5 liters of water per person. Of the five liters, they all stated that 1.5 liters would be given to the guide at base camp to use for cooking. On this front, Wasi Tours did exactly what they promised. One should not climb El Misti thinking that all food will be included by the tour agency, because this is not the case. At minimum one needs to bring food for two lunches and several snacks.

We left Arequipa at 10 a.m. on the first day. By 11 a.m. we reached the foothills of El Misti and began our hike. The first day's hike was five hours and forty minutes uphill from 3400 m to base camp at 4500 m above sea level. It was a strenuous walk with large heavy backpacks, but very doable for anyone who is reasonably well acclimatized (I had spent two days at 3600 m in the Colca Canyon prior to climbing El Misti). Two members of our party began to feel nauseous due to the altitude, but everyone made it to base camp. Again, I highly recommend bringing one's own food and energy-filled snacks such as nuts, chocolate, dried fruit, etc.

After we pitched our tent, our guide prepared dinner. Although I had been promised only a very basic dinner, I found the actual meal very tasty and filling. It consisted of mushroom soup, noodles with tuna and tomato sauce, and a hot cup of coca tea. We admired the views of the city for a while, then lay down at 7 p.m. to try to sleep.

At 1 a.m. the next morning our guide woke us for the summit attempt. He provided a breakfast of bread, jelly, butter, and more hot coca tea. By 2 a.m. we were on our way.

The first part of the hike was in darkness, as we followed our guide up unmarked trails with only our headlamps and moonlight for illumination. On this date the temperature was not too cold (around 0 degrees Celsius) and there was no wind. I began to sweat in my heavy clothing. There were two guides who took turns leading us. Eventually we split into two groups depending on our climbing speed. I was in the first group. We reached the summit at 9 a.m. after a 7-hour walk that was probably the most difficult athletic feat I've ever accomplished.

There was minimal ice and snow at this time of year. We did not need crampons, ice axes, rope, or any other technical equipment. We did traverse a small ice field but this was easily accomplished with hiking boots alone. At this time of year the hike is difficult mainly because of the altitude. By the time I reached 5300 meters I was walking very slowly, but our guide was very patient and allowed us to arrive at the summit at our own pace.

Of our group of eight climbers, only five reached the summit. One person developed altitude sickness at base camp and did not even attempt the climb on the second day. Two other tourists made it to an altitude of 5600 meters but were unable to climb higher due to exhaustion.

We spent twenty minutes at the summit (5825 m above sea level) admiring the views and taking photos. The subsequent descent was much quicker, as it took us only an hour to slide down sandy slopes to base camp. We ate lunch there, then spent another two hours sliding and walking back to the rendezvous point with the 4-wheel-drive vehicle that took us back to the city. We were in Arequipa by 2:30 p.m.

Overall it was a great tour. Our two guides each had at least 4 years of experience on El Misti. Everything that had been promised was delivered. One recommendation I have is to consider carefully how much water you will need. I tend to drink a lot of water, so I carried 6 liters rather than the recommended 5 liters. The only problem with bringing more water is that you have to lug all that weight to base camp. And remember that you will need to give 1.5 liters of your water to the guide for cooking (although a good amount of this water will be returned to you in the form of soup and tea).

Also, although this is not a technical climb, be sure to bring sufficiently warm clothing. Even at this warm time of year you will need, at a minimum, hiking boots (sneakers are not acceptable), gloves, hat, warm parka, and insulated pants. I also highly recommend either bringing or renting walking sticks, as I probably would not have reached the summit without the added leverage that my walking sticks gave me when ascending the slippery sandy slopes.
Written September 24, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Simone K
Utrecht, The Netherlands9 contributions
Mar 2016 • Couples
We are a couple of 23 and 26 and after A LOT of research here on Tripadvisor, we decided to climb Misti (and not Chachani). Since we read that for many people it was the hardest thing they had ever done, we were very well prepared: we had pills for altitude sickness, ate a lot of carbs the day before and drank a lot of water, we had coca leaves and candy, we thought about the best way to pack our bags (you don't have the energy during the hike to search for your chocolates), we brought warm clothes, read a lot about what to do in the case of altitude sickness, etc.

We went to a lot of agencies and they a) lied to us ('everybody reaches the top' 'we are the only tour operator'), and b) hadn't climbed Misti or Chacani themselves. We think Pablo Tours is a good agency but is way too expensive for backpackers. Finally we went to Carlos Zarate; a tip of the Lonely Planet. He was the first who climbed the mountain himself and finally we got the impression that an agency knew what it was selling. On top of that we trusted him. He wanted to check our equipment before we left and his son (also Carlos) was our guide.

We had an amazing experience. The highest we had ever been was during the colca canyon trek (almost 4000) but we barely felt the altitude: yes we were dizzy, and yes sometimes we felt like vomiting instead of eating chocolate. But seen the physical performance we had to do, we think of it as part of the deal. Because of injuries I wasn't trained at all (only did the Colca Canyon trek), but we walked in two hours to basecamp and 4.5 hours to the top (we were very lucky with the weather and circumstances, and we walked on the northern face, could be different than the 'normal' southern face. The guide told us we were fast but you can do the northern face with a normal physical state)

Sometimes it was SO hard, being out of breath every 3 steps, staring for ours at black sand. Especially during the night you it is only you, your feet and the sand. It was cold (-5) but we had warm clothes so we slept well and during the walk you wont get cold :). It was a struggle but first the sunrise and then reaching the top were totally worth it. So beautiful!

So be prepared; you will hike in sand on steep paths, you will feel the altitude if you're not used to it and it isn't always fun. But in the end we would recommend Misti to everybody who likes hiking and to people who want to try a 'high' mountain. The view and the feeling when you reach the top are totally worth it! Do a lot of research, choose a good agency, keep an eye on the weather conditions and with a bit of luck (like us) you will have an amazing experience.
Written March 13, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Yellowknife867
2 contributions
Oct 2014
My friend and I got to Arequipa by bus after being in Peru for about 2 weeks. We felt that we were climatized as we had already been in high altitude days prior in cusco and Machu Picchu.
We are relatively fit and hike regularly so expected this to be difficult but manageable.
We went to a your company that was in the bus terminal ran out of Andes hostel. Do NOT use this company. They charge a ridiculous amount of money and advised they would include equipment, tour guide and food. Everything seemed to be in order at the beginning, we were brought to the hostel from the terminal and were greeted by friendly staff who appeared to be going out of their way to accommodate us. We were told to show them our clothing that we were bringing which included one fleece shirt and a rain jacket and told this was sufficient. They also demanded that we rented equipment such as snow pants and hiking boots, both which were supposed to be included in the price and did not fit either of us.
We drove to the base of El Misti and began our climb, at about 3500m my friend had an asthma attack after repeatedly telling the tour guide, named Anjel, he insisted we continue and to her if she did not walk in a specific way we would not make it to the top. We were not provided with any snacks or meals during this trek as we were told this was included in our price. We had packed a protein bar which we split half way to base camp and shared 2 oranges. The trek was gruelling, hot, and difficult. There were large rocks and boulders to climb In addition to walking through sand and ash. Once we made it to 4800m we made it to base camp 2. I repeatedly told Anjel that I had developed a headache and it was getting more severe. By the time we set up camp, and after Anjel advised us he did not pack food for supper for us, I was immobile and unable to get enough oxygen in. It wasn't until I was dry heaving with a high fever and migraine would Anjel listen to my friend to go to lower ground. We packed up camp in the dark and proceeded to go to lower altitude. Anjel left us repeatedly with one headlamp taking mine stating I didn't need it. We descended through ash and sand that was up to our knees for 2 hours. We requested to continue to descend down the mountain and return to the hostel as we were weak and exhausted however Anjel insisted we set up camp and stay the night, nothing we said or requested was acknowledged and he continued to set up camp. It was extremely cold and we were not prepared for this. We woke at 530am and requested to continue the descent no breakfast was provided. We had to share a bottle of water. During the descent Anjel would not wait for us or assist us with directions or obstacles. We were falling on the rocks and in the sand from the lack of food and severe dehydration. He was nice enough to arrange for the driver to pick us up early, however as a tour guide be was extremely inappropriate and was making sexual comments towards me to my friend. He asked me out on a date more than once and when I told him no, his demeanour quickly changed and would not speak to us for the final 3 hours descending on the mountain. Anjel also brought weed and asked if we wanted to smoke it, when we said no he would disappear randomly to get high. Once we returned to the hostel staff were concerned about our health and tried to get us to stay in the hostel when we said no, they tried to make us pay for things that we had already paid for. Luckily we packed a couple oxygen tanks we purchased while in cusco that helped. We immediately went to the bus station and left the city.
Be cautious in choosing your guides and hostels, el misti has the opportunity to be amazing if your guide is prepared. Do your research on reputable companies. We hope no one has to experience what we did.
Written October 26, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Oliver H
Cusco, Peru17 contributions
Jul 2013 • Solo
I climbed El Misti on 20/21 July 2013 and feel compelled to write a review to warn people of the dangers as well as describe how incredible an experience it was to summit this beast. This is a hard hike and should not be unertaken without acclimatising to the altitude and making sure you are correctly equiped before starting out. I came in from Cusco 2 days before and made it to the summit, others had flown in from Lima and didn´t make it!

I was in a group of 7 people and there were a total of 15 people who climbed the volcano on the same day, albeit split into two groups. Of these 15 only 6 of us made it to the top due to either altitude sickness, exhaustion or a combination of the two. We set out from town about 9am on Saturday and began walking an hour and a half later (with extremely heavy packs, mine was 20kgs+). The first day is a hard 6 hour walk up hill the entire way and no lunch, nor snacks were provided by the guide (which apparently is normal). When we arrived we were all very tired and hungry. "Dinner" was a small bowl of pasta with a flake or two of Tuna, definitely not enough to fill me had I sat in town all day, let alone ascending 1.3km that day! The climb was worth it though and the sunset from base camp was spectacular.

It was a very cold night, dropping to about -5 at the camp. We were woken at 1:30am and no breakfast was provided, which I had been promised by the agency and also the tour guide the night before...... We walked, with smaller packs (containing water and snacks) for 7 hours until we summited, most of which is completed in the dark. With windchill the temperatures were as low as -20 and during our accent a girl in our group was struggling with the cold so much we had to stop for an hour to wrap her in an emergency foil blanket (luckily another tourist had this!) and under my instruction we took her frozen feet and defrosted them against our armpits, to prevent the inevitable onsetting frost bite! The guides were clueless as how to best to treat this situation and I was amazed that they did not take her down to base camp, especially after I had insisted it was the only sensible course of action! the clothes the agency had provided her with were not sufficient for the temperatures. (I had my own which were).

The views on the way up once the sun had risen were truely spectactular and although the hike was the most eshausting thing I have ever done (to put this into context I did the 4 day inca trek the week before and found it very easy) it was an experience that I will never forget. I was given crampons by the tour agency which I would say are a necessity to complete this climb safely, however they did not fit the boots they had leant me.... finding this out at 5000m is not very helpful!

Other people in my tour group were told they could do the walk in running shoes, would be fed 4 meals, that the first day was an easy 3hr walk. These were all LIES. The tour agencies in Arequipa are after one thing and one thing only and that is your money. So please be careful!!

Ask ALL the stupid questions, get the tour operator to write everything that is included out on paper, and be prepared to take your own contingency supplies.

If you are fit, acclimatised and keen, I couldn´t recommend a better trek!
Written July 24, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

JenS2207
Oxford, UK3 contributions
Jul 2013 • Couples
I agree with Oliver H earlier review. Some tour companies in Arequipa are just keen to take your money, with little regard for your safety on the trek. We are both very fit, experienced trekkers and have trekked at altitude before - we were however ill prepared for this and did not have the right equipment. We did not make it to the summit. Obviously some of the responsibility is ours for not having the right kit, but we did check thoroughly when we booked with Wasi Tours and were assured that all our meals would be provided, that adequate equipment would be provided and that our hiking shoes were suitable. We did not get breakfast or lunch on day one of the trek as promised. We did get dinner in the evening at camp, which was basic but adequate. We did not get any breakfast or lunch the second day so effectively had 1 proper meal in 2 days. Wasi Tours clearly told us that all meals wold be provided and this was written on our receipt. Our shoes were inadequate for the trek, there were some to borrow with the trek company, but these were in poor condition (and there were none in my husbands size). The guides were happy to let him go up in trainers - which proved to be wholly inadequate in the cold and the terrain. The guides themselves took little interest in the welfare of the group (one of them had never been up El Misti before). They got lost on the second day and ended up taking a much longer route than necessary. We saw other groups going past with guides carrying safety ropes and equipment, but saw no evidence of this for our guides. They were disorganised, did not check our equipment and when we got to camp they realised that that they were missing a sleeping bag at which point they tried to tell us that we should sleep in one sleeping bag so that they could have ours. (not physically possible! - The poor guide ended up wrapping himself in a spare tent. - Again lack of organisation meant that we carried an extra tent up). despite asking what we thought were the right questions at the time Wasi Tours lied outright to us about meals, equipment and safety. Under no circumstances use this company and try and get a reliable recommendation before doing this trek. it was a spectacular trek and well worth doing - just pick the right company.
Written September 5, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Boleslav
Colorado1,878 contributions
Jun 2011 • Couples
This trek can be done as two day trip, the first day is 4-6 hours hike to the base camp, the next day the climb starts at 1am to reach the top when the sun comes up.
The climb during the night requires good shoes and a headlamp as it is partly scramble over the boulders.
The views from the top of the mountain toward Arequipa, Chachani and Pichu Pichu are very nice as well as the view across the crater with a steam coming out of its middle.
There are many agencies in Arequipa selling the climb, but in the end many use Ivan Guzman's agency to organize the guides, transport and logistics. It is not technically difficult , more a walk, early in the season, the crampons are needed for last 200 meters.
One needs to be well aclimatized as this is a climb to the height of 5822m.
Written September 14, 2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jess S
13 contributions
Apr 2018
We wanted to hike Misti without a tour and did so with much success- highly recommend!
Here's the beta:
We booked a 4x4 through one of the tour agencies to the mountain, arranged for ida y vuelta for s/230. Many of the tour companies will ask for more. It would have been even cheaper if we were able to go with a tour but no one was going to the mountain the day we wanted to go. You can also take a bus towards Chiguata but that adds a few km and you may want to take another day (we did it in two days one night).
You enter through a white gate which closes at 5pm! Our driver got the people at the gate bread and coke for breakfast, para hacer amigos he said.

Things you'll need:
Trekking poles (HIGHLY recommend)
Tent
Stove (I had no problems with my pocket rocket even in the cold at 4800m)
Warm clothes! And gloves
Sunglasses and sunblock
Coca leaves or powder
7 liters of water per person

We did not use our crampons, though we had them with us.

The route:
The trail was easy to follow the whole way. The first day we started at the sign: "reserva nacional de salinas y aguada Blanca"
The trail goes up, crosses two drainages and ascends a ridge. There are white arrows marking the way, follow them!
We got to base camp in 5 hours, with plenty of breaks and getting slightly lost.
There is a camp just 20-30 minutes above this one, with more camping spaces, but we didn't want to lug our heavy, water-filled packs any higher.

Second day began at 5am. We followed the very clear trail up the mountain. Follow the ridge just slightly left of base camp. There are cairns all the way up the mountain to keep you on the trail. Just follow the ridge up!
We arrived at the cross at the summit after 6 hours, stopping for 10-15 min every hour.
Descend on sand all the way down, there are footsteps to follow. There is a field of black sand descenders right to the ridge you ascended. It took us an hour and a half to base camp, we packed up for 30 min, and continued to descend on sand. (Follow the trail from base camp descenders left until you reach another sand field to the right of the ridge you ascended on the lower part).
It only took us 4 hours to descend in total.

Super fun and worth the hard work! Definitely don't need a guide.
Written April 11, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

mikecoray
Zurich, Switzerland2 contributions
Aug 2016
Thisis actually not about the mountain itself. The hike is cold but pretty scenic and quite an experience! Do it BUT do not do it with Waiky Adventours. This is like the worst Tour Agency I've ever booked a tour with. They were lying so much about what to bring, to carry, what's included and what not. Then the equipment you rent there is like from 19th century, smelly, heavy, dirty and NOT functional for the altitude. Once I noticed all that I wanted to cancel the trip immediatelly but was said that this is a no-show and would not be refunded. In addition the other people would not be able to go on the tour if I don't go....(?!?!).
In the end I kind of had to go. I did not feel safe. The sleeping bag was much to cold and the tour all in all a huge disapppointment. The Misti is beautiful but that agency can not take credit for that fact.
Written August 19, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Øystein S
7 contributions
Nov 2015 • Solo
I went with the agency Wayki tours (for some reason, allthough they are one of only two companies who actually operate the tours and not just sell them, they are not on Tripadvisor) and all went brilliant and according to plan!

Through reading on tripadvisor and walking around to various agencies in Arequipa, it has become clear to me that booking a trek to El Misti can be quite the hustle. It was therefore such a relief when I returned from a great tour with Wayki. All that had been promised was delivered and the guides (Alain and Rolando) guided our group of six in a perfect manner. Not only were they helpful and friendly but also very fun to be around with their good humor.

I wanted to climb Chachani aswell as El Misti and I did not hesitate to book that trek too with Wayki. Already the next day we could head off to this 6075m tall giant, this time with a group of five and a guide named Gary. Omce again Wayki delivered and the view from the top was mind blowing.

If you want to do some trekking in Arequipa I recommend that you book with Wayki Tours.
Their office is on Calle Jerusalem but I fail to recall the number.
Written November 30, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Volcan Misti - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)