Adventure Life’s Cotopaxi service trip featured in Southern Exposure

Southern Exposure Magazine features Adventure Life’s Cotopaxi service project in its October/November 2010 issue. Adventure Life offers a five-day version of the trip, as well as a three-day rural schools project and a three-day conservation project in this area of Ecuador.

Writer Vicki Stout details her three-day adventure travel trip to the Cotopaxi region. After arriving at El Porvenir, the hacienda home of her hosts, Stout embarks on a horseback ride for a view of Cotopaxi, the world’s highest active volcano.

At nearly 12,000 ft., the air is thin in these chilly highlands. We ride across lush grasslands as we head upwards. We’re on the slopes of Ruminahui volcano. In the distance, the dramatic cone of Cotopaxi makes for quite a backdrop.

Rain threatens as we leisurely glide higher. At nearly 14,000 ft. and literally in the clouds, the landscape stretches out endlessly below, and it feels as though we could be the only humans on the planet. Not another dwelling is in sight.

The rain comes. Our chagra pulls rain ponchos from saddle bags, suits us up and on we go, riding through clouds and rain in surreal fashion. High adventure indeed.

The hacienda, which provides accommodations for Adventure Life’s travelers, belongs to Maria Jose Andrade and Jorge Perez, who have worked with Adventure Life to design “Travel with a Purpose” trips. These excursions combine adventure travel – horseback riding, hiking and zip lining – with community service, including school rehabilitation and agricultural work.

The three-day group service projects cost $585 per person, while the five-day service trip costs $930. For more information, visit

Adventure Life is an adventure travel tour company located in Missoula, Montana. Emphasizing sustainable travel, Adventure Life specializes in trips to Central and South America.