Because of Ausangate, we are here, we all exist. We give him offerings and he gives us everything in return. Ausangate takes care of everything, animals and people. Thanks to Ausangate, there are plenty of animals and food, because we make offerings to him. Ausangate has always been like that. He gave us all those things. He gives us potatoes and chuño. In ancient times, the shamans gave the best offerings, k’intus to the Apus.
In the Andes of Southern Peru, the high mountains are considered the most powerful of the traditional deities. Ausangate is the highest and the most respected mountain worshipped from Cuzco to Lake Titicaca – Puno. From its snows, sacred waters flow past Machu Picchu to the Amazon in Peru.
Southeast of Cusco, is the immense mountain range of Cordillera Vilcanota, where Ausangate is the highest at 20,945 feet (6,384 meters). On a clear day, the peak is visible from Cusco with its snow-capped mountaintop. After the Cordillera Blanca, the snow-capped peaks of Cordillera Vilcanota are the second largest Peruvian glaciated mountain range. On one side of the cordillera is the Andes and the altiplano highland while the the eastern side the slopes face Peruvian Amazonia, the western edge of the Amazon rainforest.
|Hard||5200 m / 17,060 ft|
Season : April-November
Departure Dates: On Request
Prices Start at : $880.00 USD
Minimum : 2 Trekkers
Inca Trail Availability:
Space on the Inca Trail is subject to availability. For ecological and archeological preservation, Inca Trail permits are limited; the overall number available reflects support personnel, such as guides, porters and cooks in addition to backpackers. For that reason, we recommend booking 6 – 12 months in advance of your desired travel. Permits for hiking Huaynapicchu and Machu Picchu mountain are separate from your Inca Trail permit. Both have limited availability and should be reserved at the time of your booking.
TOURIST INFORMATION AUSANGATE TREK:
Ausangate trek, at 20,800’ is a sacred peak or Apu, a powerful mountain inspiring the lives and rituals of the Quechua. Much as their ancestors before them, the Quechua people who live on the slopes of Ausangate have maintained their way of life in close relationship to Apu Ausangate, largely unknown to the outside world.
Qoyllulr Rit’I, the largest pilgrimage in Peru, draws thousands of people to Ausangate trek each year to make offerings and in return to receive the mountain’s blessings. Renato Aucha, owner of Machu Picchu Trekking, grew up looking at Ausangate Trek. He has the following to say:
“Since my childhood, I understood that Ausangate is the most important peak that all the people watch for signs to find out what is going on. Is the snow too deep? Is the snow too low? We observe the relationship of the sun’s direction in specific times of the year, like this. But most important it is the Apu of the Cusco region, and the owner of this entire region of Cusco – Peru.”
Because of the significance of Ausangate to our owner and his community, we welcome you to share the beautiful trek and learn about the local people.
Note: This is a very difficult trek of high-altitude. You MUST allow yourself several days of acclimatization prior to your trek.
We leave the city of Cusco by local bus and drive along the Cusco – Puerto Maldonado truck road in the direction of Tinki (3,800 m/12,467 ft). On the way, we stop in Urcos to take some pictures of the colorful market. We then go on to the agricultural and cattle raising community of Cattca, where we can appreciate the region’s spectacular views. After passing through the city of Ausangate, the capital of the region, we arrive in Tinki after approximately six hours in the bus. In Tinki, we sleep in a local lodge and start the trek the next morning.
After breakfast, we spend some time visiting the Tinki public school. We will meet the children of the neighboring communities that study at this school and we will give them some useful presents such as notebooks or pencils, things that are highly appreciated. After our visit, we leave Tinki and start a 2.5 hour walk towards Pacchanta (4,100 m/13,451 ft), where we stop for lunch.
Pacchanta is a rural community well-known for its hot springs. Here, you have an opportunity to take a dip while enjoying the views of Ausangate Mountain. In the afternoon, we continue our hike through a slight climb up the Pacchanta Valley, where llamas and alpacas can be spotted. When we reach Laguna Qomercocha, we will have a nice dinner and spend the night. Our campsite will be set in a spectacular spot with amazing views of the snowcapped mountains of Ausangate, Santa Catalina, Maria Huamantiqlla, Pucapunta, and Colquecruz.
After breakfast, departing around 7:00 AM, we begin a four-hour hike to the first mountain pass of our trek, Abra de Q´ampa (5,000 m/16,404 ft). Next, we descend towards the Ticllaqocha Lagoons, a beautiful group of small turquoise lagoons where we will have lunch. We continue our hike for an additional two to three hours, until reaching Yanamayo, a beautiful valley shadowed by the Tres Picos, the Colquecruz and the Pucapunta peaks.
We leave the camp after breakfast and start a gradual climb up towards Yanaqocha (Black Lagoon). The name is referring to the dark color of its waters. In this area the soil is volcanic and varies from dark red to black. Moraines, which are evidence of glacial activitiy, can also be found in this area. We will traverse the Yanaqocha pass (5,050 m/16,568 ft) to discover a beautiful valley filled with vibrant mountains and amazing lagoons. After crossing Yanaqocha, we ascend to our next mountain pass (5,100 m/16,732 ft). About an hour after the last mountain pass, we will arrive at our campsite, Condorpaso.
After breakfast, we begin a two-hour climb up to the Abra del Condor pass (5,200 m/17,060 ft), which is the highest point of the highway and our trek. From the pass, we enjoy spectacular views of the Vilcanota mountain range and Lake Sibinacocha (4,873 m/15,988 ft), the 22nd highest lake in the world. If we’re lucky, we’ll also see the national animal of Peru, the vicuña. Then we continue hiking for three hours. During that time, we will cross another mountain pass and descend into the valley of the source of Lake Sibinacocha. We will camp next to a lagoon where an impressive glacier stands and nourishes the lake. The lagoon boasts of its vast bio-diversity; this is a good place for birdwatching, as we will be able to spot Andean coots, a slate colored water bird with a medium yellow beak, geese, and ducks.
On day six, we depart early for a three-hour long walk along the shores of the 15.19 km long and 2.86 km Lake Sibinacocha. We will arrive at the Yayamari community, which lies next to the mountain of the same name. Yayamari is also an impressive peak that overlooks the lake (5,500 m/18,044 ft). From Yayamari, we cross a pampa (Quechua for a plain) where we will likely see hundreds of llamas, alpacas and maybe even more vicuñas. The day ends at Abra Ccascana (5,000 m/16,404 ft). This campsite is surrounded by small rural communities and snow-capped peaks.
After our breakfast, we leave Ccascana and start hiking for three and a half hours towards Phinaya for lunch. Phinaya is a small Andean community with a beautiful little church and no motorized vehicles. In the afternoon, we drive back to Cusco, where we expect to arrive after sunset.
Campsites are subject to change according to our guide’s professional discretion and hiker progress.
Machu Picchu Trekking is a licensed tour operator comprised of certified and licensed local tour guides. We are a local company with professional employees and guides who are knowledgeable in traditional (Inca Trail) and alternative (Lares to Machu Picchu) treks; all tours booked with Machu Picchu Trekking are led and staffed by Machu Picchu Trekking employees. We value your trust and never pass our valued clients onto other tour companies.
You may need to cancel your trek due to personal emergency, illness or flight delay. Because we schedule and purchase permits well in advance of your travel, we are not able to refund you your full amount.
To be refunded (see our refund chart below), please notify us as soon as possible in writing (email). Cancellation charges in addition to the non-refundable deposit will be applied as shown below, calculated from the day written notification is received by Cusco Native. (Please consider purchasing optional travel insurance to cover emergency cancellations.)
Our refund table is as follows:
|Days Prior to Start of Trek||Percentage Lost of Total Trek Price|
|29 to 22||40%|
|21 to 9||20%|
|8 to 0||0%|
In the event of partial cancellations, the remaining passenger may have to pay any remaining charges (e.g. single room supplements or double-occupancy).