The sun was out the following morning, and we again really felt like we had landed on our feet. I had been in touch with the ski resort prior to arriving in Chile (this volcano was on my "must do" list!), and was assured that a very cheap one way ticket on the lifts could be bought. Of course, once we waited for the ticket office to open, they said they didn't sell such a thing, but as we had waited around, I felt we should buy a ticket to help us on our way. The ticket man gave us a deal on it (not as good as I was expecting), but it wasn't too bad. We jumped on the lifts and off we went. That was, until the second lift broke down while we were on it, a good 250m below the top! We waited for a bit, and then just decided to get on with skinning up anyway.
Higher up, the good soft snow gave way to icy ground, complicated by lava flows, so the skis were on the rucksack, and crampons on. The wind was quite strong as well, but we did make it to the top, with Helen almost crawling along the final section! I had suspected that with the wind direction, and the previous days rain, there must be some fresh snow around, so we headed down a slightly different way and came across some nice smooth wind packed powder just below the summit. Once i'd convinced Helen that it would be great to ski, despite the angle, we set off. All I can say is that it is some of the best snow i've ever skied on, and Helen said the same. We were just cruising down a 40 degree slope no bother. It was stuff you dream of.
Once back in the resort, I thought I would grab a run on the lift, but they litterally shut it as I got to the bottom of the lift! I would say that if you are coming to do Antuco, don't bother with the lifts. Despite the near 1600m of ascent, it's not a big day as the distance is short. Just skin up from the car park.