PICO DUARTE (3,087 m / 10,128 ft.)
Round trip hike: 46K (28.6 mi) • 2.5 or 3.5 days • Elevation gain 3,468 m / 11,378 ft.
Rising in the heart of Dominican Republic’s Cordillera Central mountain range, Pico Duarte is the highest mountain in the country and in the Caribbean.
The trail leading up to the summit is not a technical one, but it does require endurance and determination. It starts in the small town of La Ciénaga, at 1,100 m (3,600 ft.) and it extends for 46K (28.6 mi) to the summit and back on varied terrain, including mud, uneven rocks and loose gravel. We assure you that the beautiful panoramas will make it worth the effort.
For an enjoyable trek up the mountain we recommend the following 3.5 days itinerary:
Day 1 (well, it’s really half a day)
Arrival at base camp
Our adventure begins with ground transportation to base camp at the trailhead, in the small town of La Ciénaga (1,100 m / 3,609 ft.).
There, after meeting our guides, we’ll have a brief orientation talk as well as a review of the trip itinerary and gear list. We’ll enjoy dinner and afterwards we’ll turn in for the night in order to be well-rested for our next day’s hike.
Hike to La Compartición Shelter
Hiking: 18K (11.2 mi) • Elevation gain 2,000 m / 6,560 ft. • Elevation loss 300 m / 984 ft.
After a tasty breakfast at base camp we’ll start our 18K (11.2 mi) hike to La Compartición shelter where we’ll spend the night. The hike is divided as follows: 4K (2.5 mi) flat, 11K (6.8 mi) uphill and 3K (1.9 mi) downhill. When we arrive at La Compartición, a delicious meal in front of a cozy campfire and stories shared under a starlit sky will help us recover from the day’s hike.
Hiking: 10K (6.2 mi) • Elevation gain 1,168 m / 3,832 ft.
The day’s first hike is 5K (3.1 mi) long to reach our goal, the summit of Pico Duarte, where we’ll celebrate and enjoy the breathtaking 360-degree views of the majestic Cordillera Central. After hiking 5K (3.1 mi) back to La Compartición, we’ll relax and enjoy the rest of the afternoon and our final evening together. Under countless stars we’ll share our stories and reflect on the adventure lived summiting this mountain.
Return to base camp
Hiking: 18K (11.2 mi) • Elevation gain 300 m / 984 ft. • Elevation loss 2,000 m / 6,560 ft.
The 18K (11.2 mi) hike down from La Compartición to base camp in La Ciénaga will be faster and easier than on the way up, but will still be a challenging one. A warm typical lunch and a cold river bath will be the perfect farewell to an unforgettable trip.
Why settle with just Pico Duarte when you can also conquer the 2nd, 3rd and 5th highest summits in the Caribbean?
An adventure that strikes the perfect balance of thrill and chill. The hike is exhilarating and the stay at the valley itself is nothing but idyllic