DAY 1: CUSCO - CHILLCA
We travel in a cozy carriage down the Vilcanota River to the temple of Checacupe and the upper Pitumarca valley. We'll walk a short distance to Chillca from Japura. As we sip coca tea, locals and musicians playing Andean instruments welcome us to your first "Andean Lodge." There are 8 double and matrimonial bedrooms available, together with full bathrooms and hot showers. We have an emphasis on delicious and wholesome regional food, including alpaca meat, but vegetarian and other dietary preferences are welcome.
DAY 2: CHILLCA – MACHURACAY
After breakfast, we hike through the glacial valley of Phinaya with tens of thousands of alpacas and llamas. We hike through the motivational Pjachaj waterfalls on our route to more glaciers at Santa Catalina. Our picnic lunch is waiting for us above. Then we hike for around five hours to Machuracay Tambo, passing by glaciers, lagoons, and moraine walls. There, a llama caravan carrying our luggage awaits us, and the lodge's management family will greet us.
DAY 3: MACHURACAY-ANANTAPATA
Our first mountain pass, at a height of 16,587 feet (5055 m), offers breathtaking panoramic views today. We trek to Ausangate Cocha Lake for lunch before descending among the glaciers. Due to the presence of red sandstone formations where we will occasionally encounter condors and vicuas, the environment here radically changes. We arrive to the third "Andean Lodge" after a day of fantastic hiking eager to unwind and enjoy.
DAY 4: ANANTAPATA-HUAMPOCOCHA
We hike to another mountain pass after breakfast. We will descend and hike around Lake Kayrawiri, which is encircled by rocky mountain peaks and the vast valley below. The hillsides are covered in colourful striations. The most remarkable hues may be found in the sediments of Vinicunca, also referred to as the "Rainbow Mountain," before we continue on to Cerro Laya Grande across the enormous Del Inca glacier. We enjoy our meal here while admiring the distinctive surroundings. In addition to the flatiron formations of Apu Labrayani at Huampococha Tambo, where we will spend the night, we may observe hundreds of Andean geese nesting in the Anta cliffs on our route to the fourth Andean Lodge.
DAY 5: HUAMPOCOCHA-CUSCO
We climb higher and higher till we reach the top of our last pass, taking in a fantastic vista of the Alps. From here, it's all downhill! We climb to the trail's finish in Trapiche, where we come across some of the most erratic shapes of Cretaceous limestone formations. We eat lunch here and take the bus back to Cusco while remembering the amazing times we had in the Andes.
ALTITUDES AND DISTANCES DAY BY DAY
To go on the "Andean Lodges" Apu Ausangate's Trail Trek, one must be in good physical condition, and we recommend a preliminary 3 to 4 day acclimatization stage, as we will be hiking up to mountain passes at altitudes of about 5,000 meters, and it is also important to drink plenty of water and/or coca leaf tea.