Santa Cruz Hike, Peru

A trek which takes you through a beautiful landscape of lagunas, rivers, snow-capped mountains and open valleys.

The trek is around 50km (31 miles) and take around 3-4 days. This is the highest mountain rage in the world outside Asia.

We started in Huarez with a couple of days of getting used to the altitude and the cold weather. We then decided to book through an agency rather than going on the trek by ourselves as we just wanted something nice and easy and not having to rent camping equipment again.

The tour company picked us up at 6am, were we met the other 6 people in the group and then we left for Cordillera Blanca with 33 peaks topping 5400m.

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You can do the route in both directions, we started at Cashapampa, the other option is to start at Vaqueria. There is an entrance fee of 65 soles sin and then started walked in lovely sunshine. We were pretty lucky with the weather given its rainy season and we expected rain for four days we only have rain/snow for around four hours on day three.

After around five hours of walking with several waterfalls dropping hundreds of meters, making the landscape super impressive we arrived to the first campsite, one of the most idyllic campsites we have stayed at. Right next to a river, surrounded by mountains, cows, horses and of course the dogs. Five dogs decided to follow our trip for the four days, mainly due to the fact we they tought we would feed them, which of course we did. They decided to be super annoying barking and chasing cows away at night-time but other than that they were pretty good company and good for warmth in the evening.

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The “Paramount pictures” mountain in the background

The company we went with gave us all the food we needed, a packed lunch everyday, breakfast, dinner and afternoon tea with some sort of snack.

Day two started as the other days with a wakeup call at six am and soon after we started the 20km walk for the day. This included walking past the Paramount mountain, as in THE Paramount mountain of Paramount pictures, the film production company. That was a nice surprise as we didn’t know about this. After this we hiked up to a beautiful laguna at 4420m.

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Day two ended on another stunning campsite surrounded by mountains and pure beauty.

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Day three started as usual at 06.00 with rain and snow. This part of the walk wasnt the most enjoyable, however after 2.5hrs we got to the top point at 4750m which was a pretty spectacular view.

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For the next 4 hour of walking surrounded by towering peaks and the terrain was mostly flat through fields and valleys we got to Huaripampa were the tour guide had decided that we would stay in a “hostel”” rather than a tent, which was fine with us.

Overall we highly recommend this trek, beautiful stunning

Tip. – The entrance ticket is valid for 21 days and can be used for Laguna 69 as well, so either save the ticket for Laguna 69 or if you are doing the Laguna first then buy the expensive 65 solos ticket rather than the 10 solos for the day pass.

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One thought on “Santa Cruz Hike, Peru

  1. Pingback: Peru – Snap Jack

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