fbpx

Cordillera Huayhuash Trek

16 Days in Cordillera HuayHuash, Peru / (Skill level: Introductory)

Price per person

$3550
  • Next Available: Jun 13, 2020 - Jun 27, 2020

About this trip

The famed Huayhuash of the Cordillera Blanca is a stunning trek at high altitude. Trekking with Alpenglow Expeditions in Peru means you are led by one of our professional guides while taking advantage of our longtime relationship with our local logistics team to create a seamless experience where nothing is left to question.

Overview

  • skill level

    Introductory

  • Duration

    16 Days

Our expedition will begin with 2 full days of acclimatization in Huaraz. Sitting at nearly 10,000’, Huaraz is the perfect place to begin acclimatizing. We spend two days at this altitude, touring the city on the first, and then renting mountain bikes on the second.

Begin in Huaraz

From Huaraz, the real adventure begins as we drive to the small village of Llamac. It’s here that we meet our man of many talents, Alfredo Ibarra. He is not only the master of our burro team, but also our incredible camp cook keeping us healthy and fed throughout our journey. We’ll load up the burros at this point and begin walking along the Quero River towards our first camp above 13,000’.

Six High Passes

From here we proceed through more than six high passes throughout eleven glorious days in the Huayhuash of Peru. Our highest pass crossed will be Cuyoc Pass at 16,404’ with most of the other passes cresting 15,000’. We’ll pass beautiful alpine lakes and glimpse mountain peaks taller than 20,000’ as we complete the circuit.

Certified Guides

Our Huayhuash Trekking Expedition will be guided by one of Alpenglow’s certified lead guides. Our lead guides have traveled and climbed extensively in South America and know the Peruvian Andes intimately. Their knowledge of Andean culture as well as the mountains, combined with their passion for teaching others to become competent mountaineers and adventurers, guarantees that your experience will be one to remember!

We combine our guides’ experience with the local expertise of our close friend, expert Peruvian logistics operator, and  incredible cook, Alfredo Ibarra. A highlight of your trip will be waking up each morning to Alfredo’s smile, hot coffee, and tasty pancakes. These logistics ensures that you stay healthy and strong, and are able to enjoy each component of your experience.

Preparation

  • Fitness

    Trekkers must be in great physical shape to join this expedition. This is perhaps the most important aspect of high altitude trekking, and cannot be stressed enough. Regular, challenging exercise for many months in advance of departure is the only way to gain the necessary level of fitness that is needed. Please contact us for more information on physical training.

    • Day 1 — Arrival

      Arrive in Lima in the afternoon or evening. We’ll stay one night in Lima just in case of delayed flights etc.

    • Day 2 — Head to Huaraz

      Drive to Huaraz (8 hours) utilizing luxurious VIP bus service, where we base out of a small but beautiful hotel (10,000’ / 3,050m).

    • Day 3 — Acclimatize in Huaraz

      An acclimatization and organization day in Huaraz. Generally speaking, we can spend this day exploring the beautiful city of Huaraz. This not only gets our legs moving but really gets our acclimatization process jump started.

    • Day 4 — Acclimatize in Huaraz

      A second day in Huaraz is spent mountain biking on local trails to further promote acclimatization. At the end of these two full days in Huaraz we should be ready to make our drive to the village of Llamac.

    • Day 5 — Drive to Llamac and Begin Trek

      Drive (4-5 hours) to the Village of Llamac (11,152’ / 3400m), before beginning our trek. In Llamac we’ll meet the backbone of our Peruvian team, Alfredo, and his team of donkeys. This is our official trailhead and the start of the trekking and we’ll cast off towards Cuartelhuain (13,615’ / 4150m) following the Quero River. Our total trekking time today will be 5-6 hours.

    • Day 6 — Trek to Mitucocha

      Today we meet our first challenging pass, the Cacananpunta Pass (15,419’ / 4700m). We ascend over a 4-5 hour period to the pass which lies on the Andean Continental Divide. Throughout the day we’ll have views of Ninashanca (18,395’ / 5607m) and Rondoy (19,258’ / 5870m). From the pass, we’ll descend for 1-2 hours to our campsite along the shores of lake Mitucocha (14,107’ / 4300m).

    • Day 7 — Trek to Carhuacocha

      Our biggest day of trekking yet - we top a second pass called Carhuac Pass (15,255’ / 4650m) before dropping into yet another beautiful valley. Our camp for the night lies at Lake Carhuacocha (13,615’ / 4150m). Todays total trekking time should be about 6-7 hours.

    • Day 8 — Rest Day

      Rest Day in Laguna Carhuacocha. We take this day to enjoy our location deep in the wilderness. For those feeling energized, we can go on an exploration hike of the area.

    • Day 9 — Trek to Huayhuash Village

      We leave Laguna Carhuacocha and hit our third pass before ending our day in the beautiful village of Huayhuash (15,583’ / 4750m). The Carnicero pass will be challenging at 15,091’ / 4600m and will once again provide impressive views of the mountains surrounding it. Total walking time today is 6-7 hours.

    • Day 10 — Trek to Lak Viconga

      An early start has leaving the tranquil village heading towards Lake Viconga (14,419’ / 4395m). Our fourth pass of the trek is the Portachuelco Pass (15,583’ / 4750m) and provides more great views to remote peaks in the Cordillera Raura. We end the day by soaking in the hot springs of Lake Viconga. Total trekking time today is 5-6 hours.

    • Day 11 — Trek to Rinconada

      Today we cross our highest pass as we move towards our camp in Rinconada. The Cuyoc Pass (16,404’ / 5000m) will be a challenge, but a rewarding one. We continue our trek today by descending from the pass towards Rinconada where we set up our camp for the night. Total trekking time today is 4-5 hours.

    • Day 12 — Rest Day

      Today is a much needed easy day of walking through the valley towards the village of Huayllap. From there we ascend a gradual slope up a narrow valley to reach Huatiac (14,107’ / 4300m). Total trekking time is 4-5 hours.

    • Day 13 — Trek to Gashgapampa

      Another day, another pass. We leave Huatian in the morning to move towards Tapush Pass (15,748’ / 4800m). From there we descent to Gashgapampa (14,763’ / 4500m) where we set up camp. Trekking time is 3-4 hours.

    • Day 14 — Trek to Laguna Jahuacocha

      From Gashgapampa we head to Laguna Jahuacocha (13,615’ / 4150m). We climb one of our last passes of the trip, Yahucha pass (15,584’ / 4750m). From this pass we will have spectacular views of high peaks, including Yerupaja (the second highest peak in Peru). Trekking time is 4-5 hours.

    • Day 15 — Trek to Llamac, Drive to Huaraz

      Laguna Jahuacocha to Llamac, drive to Huaraz. Waking up on the shores of Laguna Jahuacocha, we are now on our last day of trekking. One final pass stand between us and the finish- Pampa Llamac pass (14,108’ - 4300m). After enjoying our last views of the Cordillera Huayhuash, it is time to bring our trek to a close. A couple more hours will bring us out of the mountains, to the small village of Llamac. From here, we will travel by vehicle back to Huaraz.

    • Day 16 — Leave for Lima

      Leave Huaraz in the morning for Lima, leave Lima in the evening.

      • Headwear and Eyewear

      • Hat

        Bring your favorite baseball hat for shelter from the sun. No white under the brim - the reflection off of it from the sun is blinding. Recommended: Alpenglow 5-Panel

        $25.00
      • Beanie

        A comfortable, warm well-fitting hat that covers your ears. Make sure that one of your hats fits under a helmet. Recommended: Eddie Bauer First Ascent Beanie

      • Neck Gaiter (Buff)

        A multi purpose neck gator that can also be worn under your hat. Make sure that it covers as much skin as possible and yet is still comfy. Recommended: Alpenglow Expeditions Buff

      • Balaclava

        We recommend a tight-fitting balaclava that is worn under your hat. Make sure that it covers as much skin as possible, but is comfortable enough to wear for hours. Recommended: Patagonia Balaclava

      • Sunglasses

        Must have dark lenses. Minimal light should come in below, above, or around the sides of the lenses.“Wrap” style is best. Ventilation is important and a retainer strap is very useful (Chums or Croakies). Recommended: Revoi Guide II

      • Hands and Feet

      • Lightweight Gloves

        All-around gloves for mountaineering, backcountry skiing, and hiking. These gloves (and similar options) are warm, wind-resistant, durable and have a sure grip. You will rarely take these gloves off. They should be snug-fitting, and have some sort of reinforced palm. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Mountain Glove

      • Midweight Gloves

        These gloves should be full GORE-TEX®, and insulated. These will be your main glove for the trip until summit days, or when it gets especially cold. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Guide Glove

      • Liner Socks (optional)

        A super-thin wicking sock that repels moisture. Liner socks help to reduce the likelihood of blisters. The socks should be thin wool, nylon, or Capilene®. NO COTTON. Recommended: Ice Breaker Hike Liner Crew

      • Hiking Socks

        Your everyday sock, good for day hikes, trekking, and in- town. NO COTTON. Recommended: Patagonia Lightweight Merino Performance Crew Socks

      • Warm Socks

        A wool synthetic blend. Pure rag wool socks are not nearly as effective in wicking moisture or retaining their shape and reducing blisters. NO COTTON. Recommended: Smartwool Mountaineering Extra Heavy Crew Socks

      • Hiking Shoes

        These light to mid-weight shoes are for every day use. The ideal shoe is comfortable to wear for multiple days and scrambles decently on rock. A Gore-tex lined shoe stays drier when hiking in rain or snow. Recommended: La Sportiva Bushido Hiking Shoes

      • Upper Body Apparel

      • Lightweight Top

        Ultra-light base layer that effectively wicks moisture away from your body and is breathable. Quick-dry is important as well. One light colored shirt is recommended for extremely sunny days. The new wool blends are also an option. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Resolution Short-Sleeve T-Shirt

      • Long Sleeve Base Layer

        A poly-pro mid-layer that you will never take off. Fitted, light- weight and quick drying. Make sure it is long enough to tuck-in and we recommend zipper collars for more ventilation. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Resolution IR 1/4 Zip

      • Warm Layer

        A polarguard or fleece jacket. This is your mid layer that will be worn over your baselayer most of the trip. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Cloud Layer Pro 1/4 Zip or Patagonia R1 Jacket

      • Synthetic Top

        A simple, lightweight synthetic jacket. This item is good for layering systems and the Primaloft keeps you warm when wet. Recommended: Eddie Bauer IgniteLite Stretch Reversible

      • Hard Shell Jacket

        A lightweight, waterproof and breathable jacket WITH A HOOD that can withstand extreme weather conditions. Make sure you have pit-zips and if you are using an old jacket, re-waterproof it. Recommended: Eddie Bauer BC Freshline Jacket

      • Soft Shell Jacket

        While this item isn’t required, we know that those who don’t have one wish they did! More breathable than Gore-tex, these jackets block wind and light precipitation. A windshirt is an option for this layer. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Sandstone

      • Down Parka (5-6k Peaks)

        A puffy jacket with a hood that will keep you warm during the coldest of conditions. The higher the quality down, the better (800-fill is best). However, be sure the jacket is still lightweight. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Downlight Hooded Jacket

      • Lower Body Apparel

      • Quick Dry Shorts

        Throw these on under other layers for when the sun begins to beat, or you have a sudden urge to jump in a glacial lake. Lightweight, durable and comfortable. NO COTTON. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Guide Pro Short

      • Trekking Pants

        You will spend most of your days in these pants. Choose a breathable and water resistant pant. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Guide Pro

      • Base Layer Bottoms

        Fitted and quick drying. This piece will be a base-layer that will get you through a wide range of temperatures. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Midweight FreeDry Merino Hybrid Baselayer Pants

      • Hard Shell Pants

        Your waterproof bottom layer for extreme weather days. Make sure you have water-resistant zippers, crampon patches + good pockets. Recommended: Black Diamond Sharp End Pants

      • Insulated Pants (optional)

        Full-length side zippers are recommended, for throwing on top of all of your layers. This layer is required. Recommended: Black Diamond Stance Belay Pants

      • Expedition Equipment

      • Duffle Bags

        2 Duffle Bags - At least one bag should be extremely durable, waterproof, and big - between 90L and 120L. You should feel comfortable leaving it in a puddle for several hours. Remember dry clothes are hot commodities in the mountains! Large enough to fit everything you own, plus what you anticipate buying. Two duffel bags are necessary to fit all your equipment for travel (we don't recommend checking your backpack, best is to put all gear and backpack into your duffle). Once in country, you can consolidate your gear into one duffel and your backpack. It's common to leave the second duffel with city clothes and other non-necessary items behind in a locked and secure location that your guide will arrange for you. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Maximus Duffel

      • Sleeping Bag (0°)

        Rated to 0º F. Choose an 800+ Fill Premium Goose Down bag. Make certain that the sleeping bag is the right length. DON’T FORGET A COMPRESSION SACK FOR THE SLEEPING BAG. Many climbers also like a silk liner. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Kara Koram with Compression Sack

      • Inflatable Sleeping Pad

        72 inch long inflatable pad required. Make sure you also purchase and bring a repair kit + bag for the sleeping pad. Recommended: NeoAir Xtherm

      • Day Pack

        Mid-size pack for city days and trekking. Streamlined, neat and lightweight (10-20 liters). Recommended: Eddie Bauer Bacon 2.0 Pack

      • Backpack 35-45 Liters

        Internal frame pack that is between 35 and 45 liters. Either purchase a matching pack cover, or use garbage bags as liners to protect from precipitation. Make sure the pack is fitted to YOUR body. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Alchemist 40 Pack, or Black Diamond Mission 35 Pack

      • Hydration System (optional)

        Should carry 70-100 ounces. Must be durable and have a reliable closure system. Recommended: MSR Dromlite 2L with Hydration Tube

      • Headlamp

        L.E.D. headlamps are required. Make sure they have 3+ bulbs. Bring extra batteries. We highly recommend a tilting lamp. Recommended: Black Diamond Spot Headlamp

      • Trekking Pole(s)

        Make sure that they are durable, lightweight + easily adjustable. Recommended: Black Diamond Trail Explorer 3 Trekking Poles

      • 1L Nalgene (2)

        Two 1 Liter Wide Mouth Nalgene bottles. Recommended: Nalgene 1 L wide mouth

      • Plastic Bowl, Mug and Spoon

        A lightweight and compact cookware setup. You'll want a plastic bowl, mug and spoon. Recommended Kit: MSR 2 Person Mess Kit

      • Coffee

        While Alpenglow provides hot drink options every morning, it can be nice to have your own on hand any time you need a boost. With hot water always readily available, having instant coffee packets can give you the energy you need after a long day in the mountains! Recommended: Alpine Start Original Blend Instant Coffee

      • Miscellaneous Items

      • Miscellaneous Items

        -Passport (with visa, if necessary

        -2 luggage locks (TSA compliant)

        -Non-cotton underwear

        -Wag bags, 1 per night camping as to leave no trace

        -Heavy duty garbage bags (at least 4)

        -Stuffsacks: assorted sizes, for organizing your clothes and gear

        -Sunscreen: SPF 30 (or higher)

        -Lip balm with SPF 15 (or higher)

        -Personal first-aid kit (Band-aids, Ibuprofen, Cough Drops, Moleskin, Pepto-bismol, Imodium, Personal Medications)

        -Toiletries

        -3-4lbs of Snack food (a variety of snack food, some whole food, some bars, some gels)

        -Hand Warmers

      • In Town Items

        - External Battery Packs for phones, and other electronics. Recommended: Anker PowerCore Speed 10000.

        - Ear Plugs

        - Journal/Cards/Games for personal entertainment

        - Language Phrase Book

        - Camera - Full size DSLRs not recommended as your summit camera.  Sony RX100 is a guide’s favorite. Remember extra SD cards and batteries.

        - Compact Binoculars

        - Sandals (Flip-Flops, Chacos or Tevas)

      • Packing Note

        For your international flights we recommend that you pack all of your equipment in your two duffle bags. Do not simply pack your backpack (since its straps can be damaged by baggage handling machines). It is important to lock these bags for their trip. Depending on airport, you may be able to put your travel locks on after they have been searched. If not, lock the bag with zip ties. If the TSA cuts off the zip tie to search your bag, they will replace it. You will still need travel locks to lock your bags in the hotel and in Basecamp. Generally, you will take one duffle to Basecamp, and leave one in the hotel with your belongings for town.

    • Would you consider doing a private trek to the Huayhuash?

      We always welcome custom expeditions and treks. 50% of Alpenglow’s expeditions are customized.

    • Is it safe?

      While no outdoor adventure can be completely free of risk without losing the essence of the activity, hiring a professional guide is a fantastic way to manage and mitigate this risk. Activities like skiing and climbing have what we call “inherent risk”, which can be defined as a risk that cannot be completely mitigated by a professional. That is part of playing in the mountains, we encourage you to reach out to the office if you would like to discuss this in more detail.

    • Do I really need trip and rescue insurance?

      We strongly recommend purchasing trip insurance, and we require rescue insurance on all expeditions. Trip insurance covers issues that would cause you to cancel your trip in advance. Rescue insurance can help cover costs in the event that you decide to end your expedition early. We recommend Global Rescue for both types of insurance .

Jaime Avila

Jaime is Alpenglow Expeditions’ senior lead guide. A native Ecuadorian, Jaime has been guiding and climbing throughout South America and the world for twenty years. He has successfully led groups on challenging routes like the Southwest Ridge of Ama Dablam (Nepal), the Shield Route of Huascaran (Peru), the Polish Direct on Aconcagua (Argentina), and El Altar (Ecuador). We have been guiding, climbing, and traveling with Jaime since 1998 and the feedback from members is always the same: there is no better teammate. Whether climbing a tough ice route, humping a huge pack, or stuck in a storm, Jaime will keep you laughing, learning, and glad to be in the mountains. He is an ASEGUIM / IFMGA certified mountain guide.

 

Guide Certifications
  • ASEGUIM
  • IVBV IFMGA UIAGM - Mountain Guide

Logan Talbott

co-owner / chief guide

Logan has been guiding professionally for over a decade in the disciplines of Rock, Alpine and Ski Mountaineering. When not out guiding, Logan spends time in the office helping the team with the day-to-day operations of the business. From one day ascents of El Capitan to big Alpine climbs in the Himalaya, from ski descents on Denali to backyard ski tours in Lake Tahoe, he can’t help but smile when out running around the hills. Logan is an AMGA/IFMGA mountain guide, an Avalanche course leader with AIARE, as well as a wilderness EMT. In addition to guiding, Logan has extensive experience in mountain rescue, having worked for rescue teams in both Yosemite and Denali National Parks, and volunteering locally for Tahoe Nordic SAR. When not out in the hills, he lives in Truckee, CA with his lovely wife Lynette and daughter Maggie.

Guide Certifications
  • AMGA - American Mountain Guide
  • IVBV IFMGA UIAGM - Mountain Guide

Esteban “Topo” Mena

Topo’s formal name is Esteban Mena, but he goes by his nickname. Esteban Topo Mena is 28 years old and began his guiding career at 19, when he climbed Aconcagua’s South Face and became the youngest person to accomplish this difficult climb. Topo began guiding in Ecuador and Peru. In 2012, Topo summited Manaslu and in 2013, he summited Everest – both without using supplementary oxygen. Topo again summited Everest in 2016 while supporting his wonderful partner Carla as she successfully summited without supplemental oxygen. In 2018 Topo summited both Cho Oyu and Everest with clients in under 30 days. An incredible achievement that only the best guides in the word could attempt. He also has climbed challenging new routes in Kyrgyzstan and China and one of his climbs (Kyzyl Asker) has been nominated for the Piolet d’Or (as part of an Ecuadorian team).

Guide Certifications
  • ASEGUIM
  • IVBV IFMGA UIAGM - Mountain Guide

What others are saying about this trip

Expedition Inquiry Form

  • Have questions about this trip?

    Cordillera Huayhuash Trek

Cordillera Huayhuash Trek

The famed Huayhuash of the Cordillera Blanca is a stunning trek at high altitude. Trekking with Alpenglow Expeditions in Peru means you are led by one of our professional guides while taking advantage of our longtime relationship with our local logistics team to create a seamless experience where nothing is left to question.