that was my first and last guided climb, and it was way back in 2001 - we did Antisana - which totally rocked - we had the mountain to ourselves. the outfit was American Alpine Institute.
they had a Canadian guide and a local guide. the Canadian was good, but has since retired from guiding. the local dude was scary.
here's my $0.02 on mountain guides in South America:
the only country in SA with guides i would trust with my life is Peru because they go through the same rigorous training as guides in Europe and Canada (and many of them go to Europe to work).
in Ecuador i would only hire a guide to show me the route and go prepared to take care of all the technical parts of the climb myself (including ensuring the safety of the guide - so bring an extra harness - lol).
there's a 40% chance your climbing partner will get sick and sit it out in the hut. i would just get myself to the hut and hook up with another climber whose partner is sick. odds are they have way more skills than the local guides. if i were going i would hire a cook and a burro driver to take my crap to the hut and cook for me. then hang out a few days and wait for good weather and a climbing partner to show up.
do you have a climbing partner you are going with?
if you are climbing a popular route you are going to be exposed to the grossest 'toilets' on earth. you might bring some cigs to smoke while you do your thing. or bring some wag bags and pack it out! then you can go where you want. watch out around the huts after a fresh layer of snow - it will hide the shallow graves of poop scattered around the hut.
bring eye shades and ear plugs for sleeping attempts in the hut. nothing like being woken up by euro-trash climbers storming the hut late at night.
oh yeah, did Illiniza as a warm up. was actually a nice climb. kind of busy.
"Give me control of your TV and I could have you sticking bullets in the backs of peoples heads within a month." nowonmai
"anything you say sounds dirty to me."