One of the Great Alpine Hikes of the World

Trip Level

This trek is Level 6, Very Strenuous. Most hiking is between 10,000 and 15,000 feet, but there are several passes over 15,000 feet to cross and one pass of 16,400 feet. For the most part, you can hike at your own speed. The group will spread out along the trail during our 6-8 hours of hiking. Trail conditions can be primitive, and there is much up-and-down hiking (often 2,000- to 3,000-foot gain or loss in elevation per day). We are in the high Andes, and mountain weather is always fickle, so there will be days when it may be cold. The days can also be brilliantly sunny but nights are always cold at these altitudes. It is expected that each participant be in excellent health and physical condition. We recommend you make a special effort to get in top physical condition for the trip. The most important factor in deriving the maximum enjoyment from your trip is a spirit of adventure.

Weather

Being so close to the equator, Peru has only two climate seasons: a dry season from April to October, and a wet season from December to March. Altitude is the main factor controlling the climate. In the mountains, you’ll encounter sunny days with daytime temperatures ranging between 65F and 70F degrees, dropping to the 40s and lower at night. The sun is very strong at high altitude and it can often be warm enough to hike in shorts and a t-shirt. However, it can also get extremely cold; if you’re familiar with mountain weather, you know how suddenly it can get cold even in the daytime if the sun slips behind a cloud. Nighttime temperatures can drop to below freezing. Rain should not be a problem on our trek, but always keep in mind that mountain weather is unpredictable and sudden storms can occur, especially on high mountain passes. The best preparation for the changeable climate of the high Andes is to dress in layers.

Lima lies in a coastal desert where rainfall is rare and temperatures are usually warm (70s and 80s). Days are overcast most of the year due to the Humboldt current that comes up from Antarctica and meets the warm, tropical El Nino current from the north to create the garua, or coastal fog/mist. The climate in the Amazon Basin is generally warm and humid throughout the year but can also be unexpectedly cool (usually 60s) due to the breezes that blow down from the Andes.

Choosing the Right Trip

We work hard to help you choose the right trip for you, paying attention to your individual interests, abilities, and needs. If you have questions about the level of comfort or any of the activities described in this itinerary, please contact us.

References

We are proud to have an exceptionally high rate of repeat travelers. For more information, we would be happy to put you in touch with a client who has traveled with us.