Hiking Maderas Volcano on Ometepe Islands

Maderas Volcano

We did a long hike yesterday up one of the two iconic Ometepe Volcanoes: Maderas. I am very tired and sore and damaged after hiking Maderas Volcano on Ometepe.

Facts about maderas volcano

  • Maderas Volcano is 1394 meters at the peak, making it the shorter of the two volcanoes on Ometepe Island
  • At the top is a cloud forest
  • There is a crater lagoon on the summit of the volcano
  • There is abundant animal life, including monkeys
  • And I quote “The Maderas hike is an ardous endeavour on a steep defile dug into the rock and excavated by water. The humidity transforms the trail into a muddy, slippery path and sometimes you have to really climb instead of walk”

about the hike

Our hike took 9 hours, we were a little slow going. We saw lots of monkeys, lots of mud(!), and great views including the crater lagoon. We did it but oh boy sore muscles (and a swollen ankle) are the aftermath! And we still have mud stuck to our feet and a lot of cuts and bruises!

Monkey hiking Maderas Volcano on Ometepe

our hiking group

Aside from me and Lyna, a young German couple were the other customers, and we had our guide Oscar who was super nice. I was the only customer who spoke any Spanish so I was the de facto translator. I understood most of what was being said, so it went OK! Yay Spanish school!

It was a pretty grueling hike. The first couple of hours were very steep, the next couple were quite muddy – we were sticking in the mud. I was the only one NOT wearing sneakers or hiking boots and lost my shoes more than a few times. Hindsight, ya know?

the crater

We made it to the crater lake for lunch about 40 minutes later than Oscar would have liked. But we made it! And it was beautiful!

Maderas Crater Lake
Crater Lake Maderas

the hard part: hiking back

The way back was difficult because with our super muddy shoes we had no traction and slipped a lot (even the ones in sneakers- mud was caked on the bottom of our shoes). It was steep, downhill, sometimes muddy, sometimes rocky. 9 hours after we started hiking Volcano Maderas, we finally made it back. So tired.

Apparently, according to Oscar, this was a good – dry – time to do the hike. I would have taken photos of the mud but I was too busy trying not to fall or lose a shoe – I did both multiple times anyway!

The good

  • It was an absolutely beautiful day. Clear skies, sunny and warm but with a breeze. It was hottest at the beginning in open fields. Lyna felt a little overheated but drank lots of water at the lunch stop and it got better.
  • Lyna got a walking stick at the start and LOVED it. She used it the whole way through like an old school mountaineer.
  • The crater lake was a nice spot to stop for lunch. Some other hikers went swimming in it – the water was warm enough – but we just rested.

The bad

  • We both had a little trouble at some point during the day. Lyna got overheated and I twisted my ankle on the walk down. But, there was only 1 hour and a 1/2 to go so I stumbled to the end.
  • I somehow mis-attached the gopro upside down so until I figure out how to flip videos, there’s no video from this excursion. Working on it.
  • So sore!!!!!!!

will we hike another volcano on ometepe?

There is another volcano on these islands which is even higher. What do you think are the chances we will climb that one before we leave? I am leaning to no: I think hiking Maderas Volcano on Ometepe is enough for one week.

Maderas guide
Our guide all day
Maderas Volcano
View from Maderas
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Author: Mel

Living aboard a sailboat, scuba diver, cat parent, cyclist, blogger, love the water and exploring new places.

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