Travel guide to the top of Tres Cruces
Tres Cruces is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 4.161m (13,651ft) above the sea level, located in the province of Azuay, Ecuador. It's one of the highest roads of the country.
Located in the highlands of Ecuador, the road to the summit is winding and totally paved, mostly with concrete. It’s called Vía Colectora Cuenca-Puerto Inca (E582) and links Guayaquil and Cuenca, the third largest city in Ecuador. It’s very steep in good conditions with several hairpin turns. Expect foggy, rainy, cold and misty weather. It rains most habitually in the afternoons.
Tucked away in the southern Ecuador’s Andes mountains, within the Parque Nacional Cajas, this section is the most western part of the continental divide of South Americas. At the summit of Tres Cruces “Three crosses”, there is a small car park, which isn't always up to the demand, especially at weekends, leading to Mirador Tres Cruces, a high mountain overlook. At the summit there is a monument to the people who have died in the national park. Historically, people died in passage from the port of Guayaquil to the sierras. The three crosses were placed to commemorate the fact that many people died at that point from altitude sickness. The views are well worth the effort.