You are here:
At the gateway into Los Nevados, in the area known as Brisas, the attitude is no higher than 4,050 m. From then on, there is a 10-kilometre track, along the highest road in Colombia, the third highest in Latin America and the fourth highest in the world.
You reach the Nevado del Ruiz by the highest road in Colombia.
Along these 10 km, in the company of a guide, there are a number of way-stations which allow the tourist to adapt, and to look back on some of the scenes of places behind them.
For example, at Aguacerales there is the first station, at 4070 m, from where you can see the moisture-retaining systems, known as "water cushions”, which have a very important function of creating reserves of water in the páramo.
There is also the Condor Canyon, so-called because on a clear day, with blue skies and sun, you can see these majestic birds in flight.
Aguaceralesis the first station, at 4070 m
At the first stop, you see the last of the frailejones and other species such as the Valeriana, pajonales and romeros, and when you pass 4,150 m, the change of ecosystem becomes very evident.
The second station, at 4,250 m, is known as Valles lunares. He, the landscape is more desert-like, and the visitor will be in conditions of high paramo. You can see rocks of igneous origin, pumice stone, and fragmented, sheared off surfaces, rather like the landscape of the moon.
The landscape of the third station looks more like a moonscape.
The third station, Valle de las Tumbas (also called Valle de la Soledad), is at 4,330 m,. From there, you can see the Molinos canyon, which was the route of the avalanche that destroyed the town of Armenia on November 13, 1985, one of the most dramatic natural disasters Colombia has ever suffered.
This is also the place of myth, much visited by in the indigenous Quimbaya, Pijao and Panche groups, who performed their rituals and make their offerings on the mountain to the mountain and to Mother Earth, and only the Cacique is authorized to climb up to the peaks of the mountains.
The Quimbaya community called the Nevado del Ruiz in Kumanday.
The story goes that one of these caciques, called Kumanday, went up and never came back, and therefore the highest mountain has been given his name, which according to the park guides means "great father of the long white hair".