Cerro Rico (Cerro Potosi)
- Cerro Rico (Cerro Potosi)
- 4791 m
- Primary factor 452 m
- Location: Potosi, Bolivia
- Location: South 19:37.122, West 065:44.990 (GPS on the summit)
- Climbed: December 29, 2010.
- Difficulty: YDS class 2.
Copyright Petter Bjørstad, 2009-2011.
How to get there:
This mountain is located near the upper part of the city Potosi.
This mountain has some of the richest silver mines of all times.
A picture of the mountain can be seen on Bolivian coins.
A large part of its slope has been completely changed due to
extensive mining activity that has lasted for several hundred years.
The city Potosi itself is considered the highest (large) city in the world
with an (average) elevation well above 4000 meter.
Drive to the main entrance to the mines as
well as the mountain, a right turn
off the main highway and across a small bridge. The first natural place
to stop and ask about how to climb the mountain, may be at or near location
S19:36.449 W065:44.725, elevation about 4200 meter. We picked up a local
boy at this spot, eager to earn a descent vage and act as a local guide.
We then drove a bit higher before parking at location S19:36.541 W065:44.857,
elevation about 4270 meter.
We headed uphill, often making short-cuts on loose scree between the
various switch-backs that the mining roads are making. Eventually, the road
ends and a pretty clear trail continues uphill. Near the summit,
there is a small hut.
Continue around this hut (left side) and ascend the final slope leading to a pretty
pointed highest point. The highest part of this peak has been built by humans. Touch the top
and/or highest natural ground a bit lower.
Comments / Trip Report:
We left around 1115 and reached the summit at 1220,
good vertical pace, but easy terrain.
The view back down to the city of Potosi as
well as the surrounding landscape was well worth
the hike. We left the summit at 1235 and were back at the car in one hour, by 1335.
I picked up a pretty large rock that clearly holds minerals of some kind. This rock has been
carried home and serves as my memory of Bolivia, in particular of Potosi where we support a
SOS Childrens Village. We agreed with a
young, 13 year old boy that he could act as a local
guide. An excellent opportunity for a young boy to make some extra money. We paid him well, gave
him 100 Bolivianos, hopefully, he took it home to his family. This completed our hikes
of peaks below 5000 meter, we also hooked up with the other half of our party, Adam, Greg and
Duane, in Potosi this evening. Thus, the rest of our trip would be a 6 person, 2 vehicle
A summary of peaks climbed are available.
A full trip report can
also be consulted for more pictures and additional