Climbing: Huayna Potosi (6088m) (2 days, from La Paz)

The Huayna Potosi is one of the best known and most popular summits in the Andean region. In addition to its proximity to La Paz, its almost perfect pyramid shape is an eye-catcher from everywhere in the Cordillera Real. Few mountains have such a perfect ice cap as the Huayna Potosi. In addition, the alpine difficulties are limited, at least in comparison with many other 6,000-meter peaks in the Andes. The highest point, the imposing ice pyramid of the "Pico Norte", is a visual treat. Apart from the challenge of its altitude, there are few mountains of this size that are as easily accessible as the Huayna Potosi: a vehicle takes less than two hours from the center of La Paz to reach the starting camp for the climb at 4,750 meters. It is possible to do the ascent in 2 days from / to La Paz. To climb the Huayna Potosi, there is a low-difficulty ascent route that starts at the Zongo Pass and leads over the 5,200-meter high camp (huts with mattress camp available for the night). There are also interesting alternative routes of increasing difficulty for more experienced mountaineers.


First day

Your mountain guide will pick you up at the hotel around 9 a.m. After checking you mountaineering equipment with your guide or renting it in La Paz if necessary, you drive for around 2 hours to the Zongo Pass at 4750m above sea level. Once you arrive, it’s time for lunch in a hut at the base camp on the pass. The afternoon hike takes you along the foot of the Zongo Glacier before choosing the moraine for the climb. The paths are clearly visible and easy to walk on. You will climb about 500 meters above the starting point, which will take you between 2.5 and 3.5 hours. It is possible to rent porters for luggage. At 5270m, the refuge "Casa de Guias" offers you a roof for the night, with real bunk beds, cooking facilities and LED lights in the morning. Now is the time to prepare the equipment for the following morning and get a briefing from your guide about the next day. Tea is served and and you enjoy an early dinner. The glacier is basically in front of the door, which has the advantage that the next morning you can start the ascent armed with crampons and ice axes. A look outside before sunset offers an unforgettable Andean panorama and reconciles for the upcoming cold night. Overnight in high camp, Huayna Potosi (walking time approx. 3 h, 550 m ↑). (-/L/D)

Second day

On the summit day, you start between 1:30 and 2:30 in the morning. The entire ascent takes 5 to 7 hours. The normal route is technically not very demanding. However, there are two sections that are steeper and exposed. The first of the two key points is the crossing of the first mountain peak "Pala Chica" which often features open crevasses, over a 50m long and 50° steep passage. From here you are now on the east flank of the mountain and sunrise will arrive soon. The second technically more demanding section is located below the summit, where you either follow the summit ridge, which is very exposed but not complicated, or climb the slope directly below the summit, approx. 130 m difference in altitude at a 45 ° incline. The summit of Huayna Potosi is far higher than all the peaks around it, and thus offer a clear view of the Cordillera Real, the mostly cloud-covered transition zone of the Yungas cloud forests and down into the Amazon basin. Lake Titicaca moves into view to the west, and the city of La Paz to the east at your feet, behind it the vast Altiplano highlands - a 360 ° panoramic view. The descent from the summit takes about 2 hours back to the refuge, where you pack your things and have tea before continuing the descent to the base camp at the Zongo Pass. This usually takes another two hours. In the afternoon return to La Paz, where you will arrive at your hotel in the late afternoon. (Walking time approx. 8-10 h, 850 m ↑, 1400 ↓). END OF OUR SERVICES. (B/BL/-)


Mountaineering experience and the safe handling of ice axe and crampons are required, as well as a very good physical condition and acclimatization. For guests who have no experience with crampons and ice axes, we recommend an additional day to practice on the Zongo Glacier. Your mountain guide will teach you all the basic skills that will make you feel much safer on the way up. The glacier is a 45-minute walk from the hut at the high camp and offers a wonderful view of the surrounding peaks. This extra day has the advantage of giving your body more time to get used to the high altitude.

Best travel season:

April to October

Included in the package:

- Private transport from/to La Paz
- Overnight in tent or hut
- Certified Spanish-speaking mountain guide
- Optional: English or German-speaking guide (price on request)
- Meals according to itinerary (see above) (B/L/D)
- Equipment (ice axe, crampons, climbing harness)


Please do not hesitate to contact us for price requests, reservation, general question, and individual tour inquiries, at: contact(at)


Javascript is required to view this map.


Berghotel Carolina

Mountain Lodge at the foot of Cerro Tunari (5035m) - Cochabamba

Exclusive tours

Discover the majestic Salar de Uyuni on most innovative routes.

"BOLIVIA" magazine

Find out about Bolivia´s stunning destination & it´s unique hotels.

Tour operator Bolivia

High quality tours & customized tour packages in Bolivia

Google Ads