A five day breathtaking trek in the Cordillera Vilcanota, on a route we call the “Camino del Apu Ausangate” located in close proximity to the highest, sacred mountain in the Cusco region. The “Apu” is the bearer of life and the guardian of one of the most pristine mountain ecosystems in the world.
Our treks will be accompanied by llamas and horses that carry our gear, which that are owned by the shephards of the Chillca community, whom are proud to thare their culture, land and spirit with us.
On our hikes and in our unique “Tambos” or Andean Lodges, daily meals will be prepared by experienced chefs, introducing you to delicious Peruvian cuisine and produce. As for entertainment, authentic, vernacular music from members of the communities will accompany some of our nights in the "tambos."
Day 1: Cusco - Chillca
Early morning departure from Cusco along the fertile Vilcanota Valley to the town of Checacupe. After a visit to the colonial temple of the Immaculate, we start ascending the Pitumarca valley, along the spectacular Japura gorge that leads to Chillca, where we will be greeted by the community. From there it is a short and easy walk to the first “Tambo”. Once at the lodge there will be time to relax and enjoy the music provided by the locals of Chillca
Day 2: Chillca - Machuracay
Our hike begins at 08.30 in the wide valley of Upis where impressive glaciated mountains loom above the valley offering majestic views. The trail narrows as we make our way towards the waterfalls descending from the Santa CatalinaMountain. This path is mostly used by the wandering llamas of the area and once we reach the small Paloma lagoon the countryside will be dotted with these animals, and also a large number of alpacas. After hiking along a second lagoon and crossing a long series of moraines, we will reach the Machuracay Tambo, located right at the bottom of the Apu Ausangate.
Day 3: Machurcay - Anantapata
After a demanding ascent of the Palomani pass at an elevation of 5,200 m. / 17,000 ft., we will descend to Ausangatecocha. Tremendous views of the glaciated south face of the “apu” will inspire us as we continue towards the red sandstone formations of the “Nevado del Inca”. Overnight stay in the Anantapata Tambo
Day 4: Anantapata - Huampococha
A spectacular part of the trail finds us hiking in the middle of mountains with red, ochre, and blue strata. This section offers a glimpse of marvelous geological wonder and natural beauty. Also, be on the lookout for groups of gracious vicuñas, as they are frequently spotted in this isolated area. We will sleep that night in the Huampococha Tambo, in the heart of large rock formations near a lagoon where “huallatas” (Andean geese) make their nests.
Day 5: Huampococha - Cusco
After a last climb over the Anta pass, we will gradually make our descent. In this section the first crops and houses come into view. The landscape changes quickly as the red sandstone formations are followed by the carsten erosion of limestone, forming a one of a kind stone forest, and a perfect habitat for “vizcacha” (members of the chinchilla family). By the time we get down the valley, our bus will be waiting for the return trip to Cusco.
To go on the Apu Ausangate Trek, one needs to be in a good physical condition. To be able to complete the hike it is recommended that you acclimatize your body beforehand, so that your body will react better during the walk, because we will be walking in passes around 5000m. Likewise it is important to drink plenty of wáter and/or coca tea.
Canes: helping maintain stability during walking
Prices in American Dollars per person