Duration: 3 days
When to go: Best from may to September (during the dry season)
Altitude: 3140m to 4700m
Fees: S/.65 entrance fee to Huascaran National Park (valid for 1 month)
This 3-day trek begins not too far from Huaraz. Despite a high pass of 4700m (Punta Yanashallash) the trek is relatively easy although acclimatization is necessary (at least 2 nights in Huaraz). The trail winds its way through some wide open valleys, close to glaciers with some great mountain scenery. The high point is arriving at Chavin de Huantar, an interesting pre-Inca ruin with a complex of underground passages (take a flashlight)
Day 01: Transport to the trailhead in the village of Olleros (3500m) which is about 30km south of Huaraz. A colectivo (shared taxi) costs about S./3 per person. Gradual ascent to the campsite at Sacracancha (4-5 hrs)
Day 02: Climb to the highest point of the trail at Punta Yanashallash 4700m (5-6 hrs) and then downhill to the campsite at Shongo 4088m
Day 03: Trek through several small Quechua villages before arriving at Chavin de Huantar 3150m. You can spend the night in a basic hotel in Chavin or return to Huaraz late in the afternoon. Chavin Express buses depart 3 times a day to Huaraz, 4 hrs, S./15 per person, depart from 100 manco Capac on the Plaza in Chavin.
Maps of the Region
Cordilleras Blanca & Huayhuash 1:100,000 published by Felipe Diaz and Alcides Ames gives a good overview of the basic trek routes
Alpenvereinskarte Cordillera Blanca Sud (Peru) 0/3b (Austrian Alpine Club) 1:100,000 most detailed and accurate map of the region
Both maps can be bought in Huaraz
South American Explorers have produced a good map of the route which can be bought at their office in Lima or Cusco.
Trekking in the Central Andes (Lonely Planet) contains very limited trail descriptions and map
1st Edition published June 2003. ISBN 1-74059-431-2
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