This is a long hike around the biggest mountain in Southern Perú; the broad and majestic Ausangate (6384m high). It offers glimpses of high altitude wildlife and pastoral people living with their animals – quietly apart from the turmoil of the modern world. We pass by ice walls, glaciers, the cascades of a frozen river and numerous springs of hot and medicinal underground water.
The mountaineer will also find lovely views over the surrounding countryside, looking down into lush valleys and across the Vilcanota Mountains. These snow covered ranges arc away from east to south protecting the valley of Canchis. From these high mountains, cold waters whisper through the Totora swamps – south of Lake Titicaca.
| SAP Adventures Quick View
- Day 1: Cusco – Tinki
- Day 2: Tinki - Pacchanta – Qomerqocha Lagoon
- Day 3: Qomerqocha Lagoon – Yanamayo
- Day 4: Yanamayo – Condorpaso
- Day 5: Condorpaso - Source Of Sibinacocha Lake
- Day 6: Source Of Sibinacocha Lagoon – Ccascana
- Day 7: Ccascana – Phinaya Cusco
- Difficulty of trek: Moderate to difficult
- Length of trek: 7 Days / 6 Nights
- Start point: Cusco
- End point: Cusco
- Type of trek: Archaeological, Cultural, Camping, Ecological, Hiking
Day 1: Cusco - Tinki
We leave the city of Cusco by bus and drive along the Cusco–Puerto Maldonado truck road in the direction of Tinki (3800 masl). On the way we stop in Urcos (major bus road junction) for some pictures at the colorful market. We then go on to Cattca, an agricultural and cattle raising community where we can appreciate the region’s memorable views and finally pass through Ocongate – capital of the district with the same name and only half an hour away from our destination. After an approximated 6h drive, we arrive at the charming village of Tinki where we sleep in a local lodge to start the trek the next morning.
Day 2: Tinki - Pacchanta – Qomerqocha Lagoon
After breakfast we spend some time visiting the Tinki public school and have the chance to meet the children of the neighboring communities that study at this place. You might want to give them some useful presents such as notebooks or pencils which are highly appreciated.
We then leave Tinki and start with a 2.5h walk to Pacchanta (4100masl), where we stop for lunch. Pacchanta is a rural community that boasts some well-known thermal baths where we can enjoy a soothing dip with very nice views of Ausangate Mountain overhead. In the afternoon we continue our hike with a slight climb up the Pacchanta Valley, having the chance to spot llamas and alpacas along the way until we reach the beautiful Qomercocha lagoon – where we set up camp and have dinner. Our campsite will be set at a spectacular spot with amazing views of Ausangate, Santa Catalina, Maria Huamantiqlla, Pucapunta and Colquecruz snow-capped mountains.
Day 3: Qomerqocha Lagoon – Yanamayo
After breakfast we leave at around 7am and continue towards the first mountain pass of our trek – the Abra de Q´ampa at 5000masl which we will reach after about 4h of trekking. We then descend towards the Ticllaqocha Lagoons, a beautiful group of little turquoise lagoons next to which we have lunch. In the afternoon we continue our hike for an additional 2-3h until we reach Yanamayo, where we set our camp in an impressive valley overlooked by the huge and awesome Tres Picos, Colquecruz and Pucapunta peaks.
Day 4: Yanamayo – Condorpaso
We leave camp after breakfast and start a gradual climb up towards Yanaqocha or “Black Lagoon”, its name being due to the very dark color of its waters. In this area we can appreciate a soil of volcanic origin – its color ranging from dark red to black, as well as moraines showing the previous presence of glaciers in this region. We will go over Yanaqocha mountain pass (5050masl) to then discover a surprisingly beautiful valley with an explosion of colored mountains, three spectacular lagoons and the abundant presence of llamas and alpacas. From this point an additional hour´s hike takes us to Condorpaso where we camp for the night very close to the mountain pass of the same name – our next day´s challenge.
Day 5: Condorpaso - Source of Sibinacocha Lake
After breakfast we continue on a gradual climb up the valley that takes us to the mountain pass of Abra del Condor (5200 masl) – after an approximated two hour walk. From this pass, which is the highest point of our trek, we can enjoy spectacular views of the Vilcanota mountain range and the Sibinacocha Lagoon – our next milestone, and also hopefully we may see some vicuñas (rare to see). We continue our hike for an additional 3 hours, crossing another mountain pass on the way and then descending into the valley that feeds the Sibinacocha Lake. We will camp next to the lagoon and very close to its source, where an impressive glacier stands and nourishes the lake with its pure turquoise waters that contrast with the dark blue color of the lagoon. The lagoon boasts a wide biodiversity, and from our camp we will most likely be able to spot Andean Coots, “Huallatas” or Andean Geese, as well as Andean Ducks.
Day 6: Source of Sibinacocha Lagoon – Ccascana
We depart early to walk along the shores of the Sibinacocha Lagoon for 3hrs until we reach the Yayamari community, next to the mountain of the same name; an impressive rocky peak overlooking the lagoon (5500 masl). We then continue crossing a pampa (extensive flat field) where we will probably see hundreds of llamas, alpacas and hopefully vicuñas too, to then keep going towards the Abra Ccascana (5000 masl) which will lead us to the lagoon of the same name where we will set up our last camp. From this spot, surrounded by impressive snow-capped peaks such as Montura and Chumpi and inhabited by small rural communities, we may have the chance to spot ¨Huallatas¨ or Andean geese.
Day 7: Ccascana – Phinaya Cusco
After our breakfast we leave Ccascana to walk for three and a half hours towards Phinaya. This is a small Andean community with a beautiful little church and no presence of vehicles except bikes and horses, where we will have lunch. Finally, in the afternoon we drive back to Cusco and should get there by around nightfall.
- The times cited in this itinerary are approximate. Walking times depend on the group and the guide can change lunch spots and campsites, depending on the progress of the group. Each guide has their own preferred route and it might not correspond exactly to the route described here.
- If required, riding horses or horses to carry luggage can be arranged at a reasonable daily rate.
what's included at the ausangate?
- Pre Trek Briefing
- Collection from your hotel in the morning of trek departure.
- Private transport from Cusco to Tinki (the trailhead) and private transport return from Phinaya at the end of the trek.
- Entry fee to the Ausangate Mountain.
- English/Quechua/Spanish speaking professional guide (you will have an assistant guide for groups over 8 people).
- Tents - 2 people in a 4 person tent which allows for greater comfort, and also storage of backpacks.
- Basic foam mattress. If you require greater comfort during the trek we can hire you an inflatable mattress (eg. Thermarest) for $5 per day.
- Cook and Cooking equipment (Assistants are provided for larger groups)
- Meals as indicated 6 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 6 afternoon snacks (hot drinks, biscuits and popcorn) and 6 dinners (breakfast on day 1 and dinner are not included) (optional vegetarian food). Our professional cooks prepare meals that incorporate elements of the western diet and also traditional Peruvian delicacies. (Please communicate with your guide/cook during the trek if you have a preference for certain types of dishes).Salads, if served, are washed in boiled water.
- Hot coca tea every morning in your tent for a gentle and fortifying wake up!
- Hot water every morning and evening for washing purposes, and boiled purified water to fill in your water bottle every morning.
- Horses (for equipment and personal items) including horsemen. They carry camping equipment, food and kitchen utensils. We provide duffel bags at your briefing for your personal items (up to 5 kg per person). If you wish to take more, you can hire an extra mule at a cost of $10 per day.
- 1 emergency horse which can be ridden if you are feeling ill or if are a little slower
- Dining tent with camp tables and chairs & Kitchen tent for the cook to prepare meals
- Tents for our staff to sleep in, sleeping bags & mattresses plus a budget for their meals.
- First aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle
- A light day pack with a change of clothes for the whole period of the trek - prepare for a vast range of changes in temperature
- Rain gear (jacket and pants if available) or rain poncho. Plastic ponchos can be bought for about $1 in Cusco.
- Strong footwear, waterproof trekking boots recommended. Extra socks are a must.
- Sandals or plastic slip on thongs are also good to give your feet a chance to breath in the evenings if you wish to carry them.
- Warm clothes, including jacket, fleeces, gloves, scarf and beanie/touk.Thermal clothing is also Recommended, especially for sleeping.
- Sleeping bag (we can hire these to you)
- Torch/ Flashlight and spare batteries
- Camera, films and batteries (batteries consume more quickly under cold conditions)
- Hat or cap to protect you from the sun, rain and cold
- Sun block
- After-sun cream or hydrating cream for face and body
- Insect repellent - minimum recommended 20% DEET - although no malaria risk has been reported
- Toilet paper, pack in & pack out
- Snacks: biscuits, energy bars, chocolate, raw fruits, muesli, etc.
- Non-disposable canteen (Nalgene type) and water for the first morning.
We advise you to bring water sterilizing tablets in case you collect water from streams.
- Your own medical kit with any special medications that you might require, paracetamol, second skin for blisters etc.
- Small towel or sarong
- Bathers/swimsuit (if you intend on swimming in hot springs)
- Walking sticks or poles (we can hire these to you.
- Binoculars (if you have them)
optional extras we can hire the following to you.
- Sleeping Bag suitable for -5deg. ($4.00 per day)
- Deluxe Sleeping Bag suitable for -10deg. ($6.00 per day)
- Walking stick lightweight aluminum ($1.00 per day)
- Inflatable mattress (eg. Thermarest) ($5.00 per day)
- Two sticks are recommended for tough hikes.
- Porter - $25.00 per day Most people carry their own day pack with up to 5-10kg of their things - a change of clothes and wet weather gear etc. However, if you think that you will have much luggage and you want a very light day pack (eg. just camera and water) then its advisable that you hire an extra porter. ($100 for the whole trek, including the porter wages, food, and Inca Trail entry permit).
available discounts (these discounts are not cumulative)
- 5% discount for members of South American Explorers Club (SAE)
Students: US$ 10.00 (students require a valid International Student Identity Card and must be below 26 years of age. Please beware that Youth Travel Cards are not valid)
Teenagers: US$ 10.00 (up to 15 years of age, passport copy required for all bookings)
- Children: US$ 10.00 (up to 10 years of age, passport copy required for all bookings)
to make a booking
- You need to email us to check availability, receive booking forms and then make your deposit.
- For our payment conditions and booking please refer to our page payment & booking