This very special alternative trek takes you alongside the spectacular snow-capped "Apu" of Ausangate (6,372 m/20,900 ft.) and takes you over mountain passes, through awesome mountain scenery, authentic Andean villages, hot springs and turquoise lakes. This alternative to the classical circuit around Mount Ausangate still offers the most spectacular views of this sacred Andean mountain before deviating towards the impressive Sibinacocha Lagoon-- leaving tourist crowds behind and entering an almost uninhabited area where you can truly connect with nature. The hike ends in Phinaya, a small and remote Andean community with horses and bicycles as the sole means of transportation. An unforgettable hike for lovers of mountain trekking, who are searching for something entirely different and away from the increasingly popular traditional Ausangate trek.
We leave the city of Cusco in a private transport, and drive along the Cusco – Puerto Maldonado highway in the direction of Tinki (3,800 m/12,464 ft.). On the way, we stop in Urcos, where we can visit a beautiful lake with the same name. We then go on to Cattca, an agricultural and cattle raising community where we can appreciate the region’s spectacular views. Finally, we pass through Ocongate, the capital of the district with the same name, which is only half an hour away from our destination. After an approximated 6 -hour drive, we arrive in Tinki, where we will have our first campsite and start the trek the next morning.
After breakfast, we spend some time visiting the Tinki public school and have the chance to meet the children of the neighboring communities who study at this place. Eventually we will give them some useful presents, such as, notebooks or pencils— which are highly appreciated. We then leave Tinki and start a 2.5 hour walk towards Pacchanta (4,100 m/13,448 ft.), where we stop for lunch. Pacchanta is a rural community, offering awesome views of Ausangate Mountain, and boasts well-known hot springs where we can enjoy a nice dip. In the afternoon, we follow our hike up a slight climb through the Pacchanta valley, where we have the chance to spot llamas and alpacas until we reach the beautiful Qomercocha Lagoon where we set our camp and have dinner. Our campsite will be set in a spectacular spot with amazing views of the snow-capped mountains of Ausangate, Santa Catalina, Maria Huamantiqlla, Pucapunta and Colquecruz.
We leave at around 7:00 a.m. and continue towards the first mountain pass of our trek, the Abra Q´ampa at 5,000 m/16,400 ft., which, we will reach after about 4 hours of trekking. We then descend towards the Ticllaqocha Lagoons, a beautiful group of little turquoise lagoons, next to which we will have lunch. In the afternoon, we continue our hike for an additional 2-3 hours until we reach Yanamayo. There we will set up our camp in an impressive valley overlooked by the remarkable Tres Picos, Colquecruz and Pucapunta peaks.
We leave camp and start a gradual climb up toward Yanaqocha or “Black Lagoon”—its name coming from the dark color of its waters. In this area, we can see evidence that the soil is of volcanic origin, its color turning to dark red and black, as well as, residue showing the previous presence of glaciers in this region. We will go over Yanaqocha Mountain Pass (5,050 m/16,564 ft.) and discover an astonishingly beautiful valley with an explosion of colored mountains, three spectacular lagoons, and the presence of llamas and alpacas. We will cross through the valley as we head towards our next mountain pass (5,100 m/16,728 ft.). From this point, an additional hour of hiking leads us to Condorpaso, our next campsite, located very close to the mountain pass of the same name which will be our challenge for the next day.
After breakfast, we continue on a gradual climb up the valley that takes us to the mountain pass, Abra del Condor (5200 m/17056 ft.), after an approximated two hour walk. From this pass, the highest point of our trek, not only may we enjoy spectacular views of the Vilcanota Mountain Range and the Sibinacocha Lagoon (our next milestone) but also hopefully see wild vicuñas. Immediately, we continue our hike for an additional 3 hours, crossing another mountain pass on the way and then descending into the valley of the Sibinacocha Lagoon’s source. We will camp next to the lagoon and very close from its source, where an impressive glacier stands and nourishes the lake with its turquoise waters that contrast with the dark blue pure color of the lagoon. The lagoon boasts a wide bio-diversity, we will most probably be able to spot Andean Coots, “Huallatas” or Andean Geese as well as Andean Ducks from our camp.
Today, we depart early to walk along the shores of the Sibinacocha Lagoon for 3 hours until we reach the Yayamari community, next to the mountain of the same name, an impressive rocky peak overlooking the lagoon (5,500 m/18,040 ft.). We then continue across a valley where we will most probably see hundreds of llamas, alpacas and hopefully vicuñas. Next we follow towards the Abra Ccascana at 5,000 m/16,400 ft., which will lead us to the lagoon of the same name, which is where we will set our last camp. In this remote spot, inhabited by small rural communities and surrounded by impressive snow-capped peaks such as Montura and Chumpi, we may have the chance to spot ¨Huallatas¨ or Andean geese and maybe even flamingos.
After our breakfast, we leave Ccascara to walk for 3.5 hours towards Phinaya. This is a small Andean community with a beautiful little church and no presence of vehicles, as the only means of transportations is bikes and horses, where we will have lunch. In the afternoon, we meet our private transport that will drive us back to Cusco, where we expect to arrive after nightfall.
|01 PERSON||PRIVATE||$900 PER PERSON||7 DAYS|
|2-12 PERSON||PRIVATE||$599 PER PERSON||7 DAYS|
Our 7D/6N AUSANGATE TREK includes extra horse to carry up to 7kg/16lbs of your belongings.
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The most popular treks in Cusco at the best price