• Trek where few others venture
  • Panoramas with some of Peru’s highest mountains
  • Inaccessible to pack animals
Difficulty
Difficult
75%
Reviews

Best tour company in all of peru!!!

We were in Peru for almost two months and they were by far the best service givers that we have experienced! They are very honest

Vallunaraju was hard work but so rewarding, the view from the top was really worth it!
I will remember my experience forever. Now I just want to attempt another summit!
Thank you Akilpo for your such an amazing thing and for giving me the best guide ever!

I will remember my experience forever. Now I just want to attempt another summit!
Thank you Akilpo for your such an amazing thing and for giving me the best guide ever!

An ideal trek with very visitors each year but with a clean environment and the opportunity to get to know more about the archeological finds at Joncopampa. The Aquilpo Valley is bordered by two enormous granite blocks, vertically harmonised with Queñual forest, rivers, waterfalls, animals and a campsite next to the lake at the foot of the mountain with the same name. From the highest point (Urus Pass) we get impreesive views all our us of the beautiful snow-capped peaks (a few are over 6,000m high) like Tocllaraju, Palcaraju and Ranrapalca. The Ishinca Valley is famous for its climbing routes with lakes and their splendid colours, plains and slopes with long Ichu grass.

Note:  The suggested itinerary is provided for information only, because it can be modified to adapt to flight schedules, weather conditions or other unexpected events.

Day 1:  Huaraz / Joncopampa (3,465m) / Aquilpo Lake (4,700m)

7 – 8 hours / 13.5 km / elevation change  (+1,235m)

Depart Huaraz to the north with the main up to the village of Tariacá and go onto dirt road that runs along the Pariahuanca (2,811m) hill and ascend up to the archeological site of Joncopampa at 3,465m (2 hours) from where we visit the archeological remains of Joncopampa. After 2km we entre the Aquilpo Valley that gives us a lovely view of the trail that enters the narrow canyon/valley of Aquilpo with its Queñual forest. We cross the river various times and after a few kilometres the valley opens up to lush pastures. The final section ascends the steeper slope until we reach Aquilpo Lake (4,700m) and its icy waters with their blue turquoise colours dilating the reflection of the snow-capped peak of mount Aquilpo (5,520m). Camping here, we have a view of the valley we’ve just passed through and its surroundings.

Day 2:  Aquilpo Lake (4,700m) / Urus Pass (5,041m) / Ishinca Base Camp (4,380m)

6 – 7 hours /  5.5 km / elevation change  (+341m / -661m)

Heading north after packing our equipment, we ascend along the right edge of Aquilpo Lake, at times moving away from the lake as the trail continues along the rocky slope until we reach the Urus Pass at 5,041m (about 2.5km to here). An ascent worthwhile as now have almost 360 degree views of various snow-capped peaks like Urus, Ishinca, Ocsapala, Janyaraju and 6 miles further, Tocllaraju (6,032m), Palcaraju (6,110m) and Ranrapalca (6,162m).

We continue to descend into the Ishinca Valley when after a few minutes we sight the Milluacocha Lake in the distance, at the foot of mount Toclla. The trail continues along the slope with some Ichu grass until we reach the base camp of Ishinca (4,380m). (this is a 3km descent from Urus Pass)

**In winter, equipment for snow trekking would be required for Urus Pass.

Day 3:  Ishinca Base Camp (4,380m) / Collon (3,450m) / Huaraz

5 – 6 hours / 15.5 km / elevation change (-930m)

After enjoying a brilliant dawn and packing our equipment, we descend via the Ishinca Valley with the trail on the right side  and dry on the banks of the Ishinca River with its murky turquoise waters. After the prairie/open area gives way to much more lush vegetation and Queñual forest and other thick bush until we get to the valley entrance. 3 hours later we pass through the valley entrance and continue through cultivated areas to the village of Collon (3,450m). We return from here to Huaraz with our private transport.

Good to know
DIFFICULTY GRADE
Difficult
75%
Transport

Road: private transport Trek: equipment transported by muleteer, mules and/or porters.

Accommodation

We camp in tents during the trek.

Meals

The food is prepared by our local chef. If you have restrictions or are allergic to any product. please inform us when booking your trip.

Winter

Equipment for snow trekking would be required for Urus Pass – this can be rented at Akilpo.

Options for Trek Extensions

*Ascent of Ishinca peak – climb (2x days more)
*Ascent of Urus peak – climb (2-3x days more)
*Speak to us about creating custom extensions for your expedition.

The Program Includes:

  • Professional trekking guide
  • Camping equipment (tents & mattress)
  • Food during the trip
  • Entrance fee
  • Cook, porter, donkey driver & mules
  • Cooking Equipment
  • Transportation to and from excursion
  • First Aid, emergency oxygen & Radio

The Program does not Include:

  • Personal Equipment
  • Sleeping Bags
  • Does not include the first breakfast or last dinner.
  • Personal expenses and drinks in town
  • Other items not mentioned above

Best tour company in all of peru!!!

We were in Peru for almost two months and they were by far the best service givers that we have experienced! They are very honest

Vallunaraju was hard work but so rewarding, the view from the top was really worth it!
I will remember my experience forever. Now I just want to attempt another summit!
Thank you Akilpo for your such an amazing thing and for giving me the best guide ever!

I will remember my experience forever. Now I just want to attempt another summit!
Thank you Akilpo for your such an amazing thing and for giving me the best guide ever!

Yungay Campo Santo

Highly recommneded tour company. I’ve been traveling the world for 2 years and this is the one of best tour groups I’ve ever used. The trek Santa Cruz was recommended as I only had 4 days and was well organized and the food and companionship was first rate.

Akilpo Team 900

RECOMMENDATIONS & GENERAL INFORMATION

Acclimatisation: This is a difficult trek and is recommended for trekkers who have previous trekking experience and are physically in a good condition and fit. Acclimatisation before the trek is a must! The highest pass you will cross is Cuyoc at 4,950m with most of the trek above 4,000m. If you are coming from up from sea level or anything less than 2,500 meters, you should spend at least 3 days in Huaraz. Please see our 1-day hike programs  that would be useful in helping you adjust to the altitude. Note: We can put together a package that would include acclimatisation hikes/treks as well as a complete program with transport from Lima (return if preferred).

Recommendations for Best Seasons: The best time is from mid-April to late October, November. April, May and June are the best months for lovers of flowers. July through August are the best months for blue sky & also excellent period for photographers (warm colours and clear blue skies are great!). It starts getting cloudy more often in early September. October and November are the months when after 2-3pm you can count on afternoon showers.

Weather: The city of Huaraz has a semi-dry and semi-cold climate, with an average maximum temperature of 23.9° C (75.0° F) and a minimum of 7.1° C (44.8° F). The dry season is between the months of May to September and mid-April and October.

Vaccines: No mandatory vaccines. Recommended the typhus, tetanus, hepatitis A and B.

Languages: Spanish & Quechua (we speak English as well)

Money: Nuevo Sol, but the US dollar is accepted at restaurants, shops, and service stations

Time Difference: GMT -05:00

Location: Peru is located on the western edge of South America bordering Chile (south) and Bolivia (to the southeast), Brazil (northeast), Colombia (north) and Ecuador (northwest).

The Cordillera Blanca is a chain of snowy mountains in the north of Peru, 400 miles (640km) from Lima.

MORE ABOUT HUARAZ

HUARAZ (population: 100,000) is the capital of the Ancash Region in the northern Callejón de Huaylas valley. The eastern skyline of the city is dominated by the impressive snow-capped peaks of the Cordillera Blanca, much of which is in the Huascarán National Park. One of the landmarks is Perú’s tallest mountain, Huascarán towering up at 6,768m.

At an average altitude of 3,000 – 3,100m altitude, Huaraz is also the base for most of the mountain activities like trekking and climbing in the Cordilleras Blanca and Huayhuash.

Cuy (guinea pig) is one of the regional specialities although you’ll also find many cebicherías (fish and seafood). Being a base for many tourists, quite a variety of restaurants and bars have sprung up everywhere. Feel free to ask us about what’s the latest/trendiest spots.

TRAVEL TO/FROM HUARAZ

By Road:  Several bus companies serve the route between Lima and Huaraz as well as between Chimbote and Huaraz. Travelling from the south of Perú, connect with a bus service from Lima (about 8 hours). From the north, the best is to connect with a bus service from Chimbote (about 4-5 hours)

By Air:  Daily flights from Lima to Huaraz/Huaraz to Lima are now available. Keep in mind that there are luggage restrictions with 15kg limit per passenger and 5kg hand luggage. The flight is about 50 minutes and a taxi (about S/25 – $8.00) can then get you to Huaraz city, more or less a 20 minute ride. For further information visit the airline site at LC Peru

GETTING AROUND HUARAZ

A range of transport options are available within Huaraz and also for getting to and from the outlying areas and villages.  The most obvious are the little ‘moto’s’ that will take you anywhere (in the day) for S/1.50 (about $0.40 – 0.50). Taxis (cars) are generally in the region of S/3-4 (about $1-1.20). Commonly used by most residents in Huaraz are the different collectivos, cars and minibuses – these are also the cheapest and will pretty much get you anywhere you want to get to.

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