Route Technical Characteristics: Route Profile: Hard. You will be hiking on a trail with continuous line and balanced ascent. The terrain is quite exposed, there are some jagged rocks and facile snow free glaciers, and fall hazard is possible. Some…
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Route Profile: Hard. You will be hiking on a trail with continuous line and balanced ascent. The terrain is quite exposed, there are some jagged rocks and facile snow free glaciers, and fall hazard is possible. Some sure footedness and experience with hilly terrain would be of benefit.
Total Distance: 113.6 km
Travel Season: Fixed Departures: July 9 and August 19, 2022
Any date on request from January 2 to December 31, 2022
**Group rates available for this tour. As this is a guided tour, the pricing improves with more people participating. Please ask us for details
3* hotels, hostels and tents
The Huayhuash circuit is among the best treks in the world and it is a well-deserved title. Located in the Peruvian Andes, close the Cordillera Blanca, the Huayhuash range has some of the most dramatic peaks in the Andes like: Siula Grande (Dramatised in the film “Touching the Void”), Carnicero, Jirishanca and Yurupaja (second highest mountain in Peru) just to name a few. The semi-circular itinerary goes over several mountain passes, one of them above 5000 meters and most above 4500 meters. This is a high altitude trek, quite remote, physically demanding and long distances to be covered, but worth every step of the way. On top of all that, even though it is a famous trek, it sees less visitors than similar popular treks around the world. An experience not to be missed!!
Arrival in Lima, Peru
Pick up at airport and transfer in to hotel in Lima.
Lima – Huaraz (3005 m)
After breakfast, transfer to bus terminal for tourist public bus to Huaraz. The bus ride takes about eight hours, depending on the traffic leaving Lima. The road trip goes along the pacific coast, heading north and then eastwards up the Andes. The first sight will be the Huayhash Range, before heading back north where the first summits of the Cordillera Blanca will appear. The road starts to descend towards the city of San Sebastian de Huaraz, locally known just as Huaraz. Huaraz is the capital of the Anchash region and is located in the spectacular Cajon del Huaylas Valley, between the Cordillera Negra on the West side and the Cordillera Blanca on the East side, with the highest mountain in the country in the background: Huascaran (6768 m). Huaraz is the main departing point for mountain activities, both to the Cordillera Blanca and Huashuash range; therefore it is considered the Peruvian “Chamonix”. The city has a wide offering of services as restaurants, accommodations, grocery stores, gear shops and guide services. Upon arrival in Huaraz, transfer to the hostel.
Huaraz – Rest/Acclimatization day (3005 m)
This is a free day and the idea is to adapt to the altitude and enjoy the many offers Huaraz has for the mountaineer/traveler. The town of Huaraz has develope quite a lot in the last years and now it offers a wide variety of possibilities like different types of restaurant, bars, cafes, specialized shops and a bunch of activities lie: hot spring, rock climbing, day hikes, etc.
Churup Lake (4445 m) 6.2 km + 605 m – 605 m
Today’s hike is one of the classic acclimatization itineraries in the Cordillera Blanca. The Churup peak is located close to Huaraz and can be seen from town. It is ideal to gain a good amount of altitude in a day and return back to Huaraz to sleep low. From Huaraz transfer (one and a half hours) to Pitec’s trailhead (3660 m), from this place a very well maintained handmade trail begins its ascent following a ridge that gains altitude quite fast. Soon the handmade trail turns into a mountain trail, as it takes the northern side of the Churup River Valley. The ascent gets steeper from this point and a bit demanding. Once on a wide plateau, we have a well-deserved rest, before climbing up the last section where a bit of very easy scrambling secured by a good set of wires leads to an easy last section ending by the shores of the lake at 4445 m. The rocky lake’s shores are a great spot to have a bite while enjoying the amazing sight to the Churup peak. For those who want to challenge themselves, it is possible to hike further up 45 minutes to the Churupita Lake, right on the moraine (please check this possibility with your guide, as sometimes it is not accessible). The descent follows the same trail and takes an average time of one and a half hours. The transport back to Huaraz.
Lake 69 (4397 m) 10.8 km + 514 m – 514 m
After breakfast, pick-up at the hostel for a two and a half hours drive down the Cajon del Huaylas Valley and then up to the Llanganuco Valley in Huascaran National Park. The Llanganuco Valley is one of the most visited spots in the park, and no doubt it is not to be missed! The beautiful deep turquoise waters of Orconcha (Male Lake) and Chinanconcha (Female Lake), contrast with impressive high summits of Huascaran and Huandoys on both sides of the Llanganuco valley. After the lakes, the valley opens up and other famous summits comes into view like: Pisco, Chopicalqui and Chacraraju. The trail to Laguna 69 starts at Cebollapampa (3883 m), from this point, a well-marked trail follows the river along the valley up to a steep section then leads into a second valley with a small lake, from there the moraine starts and the whole landscape gets an alpine atmosphere. After a short section of switchbacks, the lake will come into sight and all the effort will be well rewarded. The deep blue glacier waters with Chacraraju Peak in the background, a perfect place for an unforgettable picnic by the lake’s shores. The descent follows the same trail back to Cebollapampa and then back to Huaraz.
Huaraz – Huallanca – Cuartelhuain (4100 m)
The drive goes south up the Callejon de Huaylas with nice views of the southern part of Cordillera Blanca and the first great views of Cordillera Huayhuash mountain range. The road trip takes between five and six hours. The first campsite will be located at a place known as Cuartelhuain, just at the foot of the range.
Mitucocha (4100 m) 8.3 km + 650 m – 620 m
The hike starts up to the first mountain pass on the northern part of the Huayhuash mountain range: Cacanampunta pass (4750 m). From this point there is a great panoramic view down to the first lakes on the trek and the green valleys. The descent traverses down to the camping site which is below the east face of Ninashanca and Rondoy.
Carhuacocha Lake (4080 m) 8.6 km + 670 m – 720 m
Leaving the campsite, the team will hike over a grassy terrain,
heading up to the second pass known as Yerupaja Chico (4800 m).
On the way, we will come close to Jirishanca Chico, where it is
possible to find ammonites fossils and a great view to a couple of famous peaks: Jirishanca and Yerupaja, the second highest summit
in Peru. Also it is possible to see Carnicero and Siula Grande, the
last is world known due to Joe Simpson famous survival ordeal depicted in the motion picture The Void. The descent follows a very nice trail to one of the best camping sites by the shores of Carhuacocha Lake
Huayhuash (4230 m) 12.2 km + 770 m – 620 m
This is one of the most spectacular days of the trek. It starts from the camp following a trail close the lake’s shores until a grassy meadow
that leads to a hidden valley. As it gains altitude, a series of lakes with turquoise color waters begin to appear at the base of the amazingly steep iconic peaks such as Siula, Quesillococha and Janrajanca. This valley leads up to Siulapunta Pass (4850 m) from where it is possible
to get a magnificent view of the east face of Yerupaja and Siula Grande.
From the pass a gentle descent to Huayhuash campsite located in the junction of some lower valley and fantastic views to other peaks.
Viconga (4400 m) 10.3 km + 520 m – 350 m
After breakfast, the group will take a very beaten trail that passes along local farming houses as it slowly ascends to the next mountain pass of Portachuelo of Huayhuash (4750 m). From the pass it is possible to see the neighboring Raura range and its distant peaks. Then a short descent to Viconga Lake. After we arrive and take a break, those who want to can do an excursion to the hot springs and enjoy the rest of the afternoon relaxing.
Huanacpatay camp (4500) 8.5 km + 600 m – 500 m
Today the trek reaches the highest point of the circuit: Cuyoc Mountain Pass (5000 m), where the trek will cross over to the other flank of the range. A whole new landscape and view, almost the entire length of the Huanacpatay Valley can be seen as well as down to the campsite on one of the first platforms, known as elephant.
Huayllapa Village (3500 m) 15.9 km + 450 m – 1450 m
Today is a long day, the day starts hiking up to the San Antonio Pass (4950 m), which has one of the most amazing panoramic views of the itinerary. From the pass there is a direct view to Yerupaja’s south face, Mt. Sarapo’s west face, Mt. Jurau, Mt. Trapecio, Mt. Rasac and the upper part of Siula Grande. On the descent, it is possible to see the lakes of Jurau, Santa Rosa and Sarapo. The hike follows a well-marked trail down the Calinca Valley where the village of Huayllapa is located. The village is a small settlement with a few colonial houses and small shops where it is possible to get some snacks and there is a place for the expedition team to get supplies for the remains of the trek.
Cashpapampa camp (4530 m) 10.8 km + 1250 m – 270 m
After breakfast, the group will start one of the longest ascents on the trek to Tapush Pass (4750 m). The trail is very good and the ascent is progressive, during the hike it is possible to see the change in vegetation and feel the temperature change. Once on the pass, the summits of the western area will be visible and also the Susucocha Lake. The camp is located down in the valley.
Jahuacocha camp (4100 m) 11.8 km + 320 m – 750 m
The day starts slightly descending a couple of hours and then taking a steeper trail to Escalon Punta Pass (4850 m). This pass divides the two valleys and from there we will start to see very nice scenery down the Huacrish Valley, which ends at the amazing and iconic Jahuacocha Lake where the camp will be setup. On certain days, there is a good chance to see Condor while descending. The campsite has one of the best locations and a superb view to some of the highest peaks of the Huayhuash range and Peru. Definitely a place to enjoy!
Llamac (3240 m) – End of trek – Back to Huaraz 10.2 km + 500 m – 1360 m
Last day of the trek! Depart from Jahuacocha Lake down the valley until a place where a second trail begins to ascent. The hike is very scenic and slowly the local farms will be visible. The last pass is called Pampallamac (4600 m) from where it is possible to get the last glimpse to the Huayhuash and to the north the Cordillera Blanca, then a long descent, along farm houses and farming lands, to the village of Llamac where this fantastic trek ends! A transport will be waiting to take the team and staff back to Huaraz (five hours). Once in Huaraz, the group will be taken to the hotel for a last night in town.
Huaraz – Lima
Transfer out to Huaraz’s bus terminal for a tourist public bus to Lima (8 hours). Upon arrival in Lima, transfer to hotel.
Lima – Departure
Pick up at hotel and transfer out to Lima’s international airport. End of services.
- Local English speaking professional trekking guide from Day 3 to 16
- Entrance fees to local communities fees and National Park permit
- Assistant guide during the Huayhuash’s trek from 6 people and a 3rd guide from 12 people
- Private transfer: airport – hotel – bus terminal – hotel in Huaraz – bus terminal – airport in Lima
- Transfer in tourist public bus from Lima to Huaraz and back
- Private transportation in the mountain area
- 2 nights in shared double rooms in Lima
- 5 nights in shared double rooms in Huaraz
- Quality mountain tents – 2 people per tent – from Day 6 to 14
- Group common campsite equipment: dinning tent, toilet tent, kitchen tent, tables and chairs
- Pack animals for group campsite equipment, food and traveler’s personal gear
- Emergency horse for evacuation
- Cook during the trek
- Complete mountain first aid kit and oxygen for emergency porpoises
- Meals as specified in the itinerary (16 breakfasts, 12 lunches and 9 dinners)
- Domestic and international flights
- Meals not mentioned in the program
- Alcoholic and soft drinks
- Personal expenses
- Personal camping equipment
- Everything not mentioned in the “Included” list
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