Refugio Jose F. Rivas 4800 m
Foto Estudio Bodo Wuth / Esabel de Wuth
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Cotopaxi is an active volcano in the Andes Mountains, located northeast of the city of Latacunga, Ecuador, in South America. It is the second highest summit in Ecuador, reaching a height of 5,897 m (19,347 ft). It is one of the world's highest volcanoes.
Since 1738, Cotopaxi has erupted more than 50 times. The last eruption lasted from August 2015 to January 2016.
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In the late 20th century, summiting Cotopaxi became a major tourist draw. The José F. Ribas Refuge (Refugio José Félix Ribas) was built in 1971 at an elevation of 4800 m and enlarged in 2005. A tragedy occurred here on Easter Sunday 1996 when an avalanche partially buried the Refuge and dozens of tourists.