Mountain range

Woolx Dispatches from the road: Iztaccihuatl

Pack Less. Play More.

#WoolxinAction Dispatches from the road: 

Justin Knowles from traveled to Mexico where he climbed to 15,470 ft. on the volcanic peak Iztaccihuatl. He brought back some gorgeous photos from his adventure and shared them with Woolx Life in a wonderful photo essay!


Foggy mountainous view


Mexico’s Ixta-Popo National Park protects two peaks over 17,000 feet in elevation.  Iztaccihuatl (Ixta) at 17,159’ is the 7th tallest peak in North America, and Popocatepetl  (Popo) at 17,887 feet is the 4th tallest.  Ixta is frequenty climbed, but Popo has been closed to climbers since 1994 due to volcanic activity.

In August 2016, I climbed Ixta to the Los Cien Hut at over 15,400 feet during a business trip.  The remnants of Hurricane Earl blanketed the area making for a foggy, snowy, and rainy climb.  The marginal conditions highlighted the importance of wearing quality gear.


Model standing a top mountain


I took the standard Arista del Sol summit route.  The route starts at the La Hoya trailhead at 13,040 feet near the pass that Cortez passed during his conquest of the Aztecs.



Man at the top of mountain

I passed through grasslands to sand, rocks, and snow.  The mountain was relatively empty of climbers due to the weather.


Rock portillos


On our way to Los Cien Hut, I passed four landmark portillos (rock formations).  The climbing was mostly class 2, and route finding was a challenging in the fog.


Foggy trail


After a few hours, the trail flattened a bit, and the ghostly outline of the hut emerged.  I caught my breath, took some photos, ate a little food, and descended.


Scenery with flowers


A thunderstorm approached encouraging a rapid descent.



Mountain range

The clouds cleared on the way back to Mexico City.  I slept soundly and worked in Mexico City the next day.


Mountain range


I cannot wait to return to Mexico and summit Ixta.  The extinct volcano is beautiful, high, and challenging.  Mexico City provides the best access to high peaks in North America.  The logistics are also relatively simple.  Ixta is a 2 hour drive from Mexico City with many local guide options and good route beta.


On Ixta, Woolx kept me warm, dry, and comfortable.  I wore the Woolx hoodie, lightweight t-shirt,  boxer briefs, summit socks, and the beanie. I  look forward to continued testing in the mountains.

– Justin Knowles



Thanks for this gorgeous account of your adventure Justin! You can follow along with Justin as he and his family explore the west coast and beyond on and on Twitter: @technologyhiker and Instagram: @technologyhiker.




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