Rainbow Mountains - Ausangate trek best bucket list for trek in Peru of 2023
Highlight: ausangate mountain, colourfully dressed locals.
Location: About 3 hours drive east of Cusco, leaves from village of tinqui.
Duration: 5 days/ 4 nights
Adventure Rating: this can be quite popular in high season but is still challenging - particularly the cold!
Level: moderate - difficult if acclimatized
Inca Trail Alternative: can be combined with a day trip to machu picchu at the beginning or end of your trip.
Departs: Any day with two people. We offer affordably priced tours for 2 people so that you can depart any days.
Day 1: Cusco - Tinki Community - Upis Hot Spring
Very early we leave the city of Cusco in a private transport, and drive along the Cusco – Puerto Maldonado highway in the direction of Tinki (3800m/12464ft). On the way we pass through Urcos, where we may spot a beautiful lagoon with the same name, continue on to Cattca, an agricultural and cattle raising community where we can appreciate the region’s spectacular views and finally cross Ocongate, capital of the district with the same name and only half an hour away from our destination. After an approximated 4-hour drive, we arrive in Tinki, where we meet our wranglers and horses. We start our trek initiating a slight climb that crosses through puna (dry, high area with little vegetation) to then arrive at our lunch spot after a three-hour walk. From here we already have beautiful views of the sacred Ausangate peak (6372m/20900ft). After lunch, we continue walking for another hour and a half to reach our campsite in Upis at 4400m/14432ft. From this point, we may appreciate fabulous views of all the snow peaks in the area. We camp and dine directly in front of Ausangate.
Day 2: Upis - Arapa Pass - Ausangateqocha
After breakfast, we continue our hike ascending for two hours to reach La Arapa pass (4850m/15908ft). We then descend to our lunch spot, crossing an area of falcons and ¨vizcachas¨ or Andean rodents. This area also boasts three beautiful lakes with tones of reds, greens, and turquoises (Pukacocha, HatunPukacocha, and Qomerqocha) and spectacular views of the surrounding snow peaks. After lunch, we continue on a long and slow ascent that will take us, after about two hours, to the second mountain pass, the Abra de Apuchata (4900m/16072ft), from which we descend, for another half an hour, towards our campsite at Ausangatecocha (4440m/14563ft).
Day 3: Ausangatecocha - Huchuy Phinaya
Today, we depart early to climb for two hours towards the third mountain pass, the Abra de Palomani (5200m/17056ft). This is the highest part of the entire hike, from which we then descend for another 2h through an area of llamas, alpacas and ¨vizcachas¨ to reach Pampacancha (4050m/13284ft). From here we follow an uphill trail until that leads us to our campsite in Q´ampa (4300m/14104ft). Along this easy 3-hour climb we may have the chance to spot llamas, alpacas, and maybe even pumas. We will camp and dine at this place.
Day 4: Huchuy Phinaya - Qampa Pass - Pacchanta
We climb for 2 hours until we reach Q´ampa mountain pass (5000m/16400ft), where we may have the chance to spot the Andean deer. From here we descend towards the Qomerqocha lagoon to finally arrive at Pacchanta (4100m/13448ft) after an approximated five-hour walk. Pacchanta is a little community with attractive hot springs where we can enjoy a relaxing dip. We camp and spend the night at this place.
Day 5: Pacchanta - Tinqui - Cusco
We leave Pacchanta and start to walk our way back to Tinki, which will take approximately 2 hours. Once in Tinki, we board a private transport that will take us back to the city of Cusco, where we estimate to arrive after nightfall.
What is Included?
Collection from your hotel in the morning and transfer in private transportation to Tinki (starting point of the trek)
Personal tents: 2 people in each 4-people-capacity tent, to allow for higher comfort and a safe keeping of backpacks. Our tents are 3-season, highly maintained to ensure an excellent performance in field. Kailas, Pro aconcagua and Rei 4 Outfitter tents are employed when double accommodation is requested.
One sleeping pad per person
1 Blanket or Liner
One pillow per person
Dining tent with tables and chairs
English speaking professional and official tourist guide (2 guides for groups of over 10 people)
Chef and cooking equipment
Pack animals (to carry tents, food and cooking equipment) – days 1 to 5
Pack animals to carry personal gear up to a maximum of 7kg per person (including sleeping pad and sleeping bag) – days 1 to 5
Accommodation for all our staff
Meals (04B, 04L, 04D + daily morning snack + daily tea service except last day). Vegetarian or special menus are available at no extra cost
One textile snack bag per person, to avoid the usage of plastic bags that contaminate our environment
Filtered boiled water from lunch time on 1st day onwards
Bio-degradable personal hand soaps
Bio-degradable dishwashing detergents used by our kitchen staff
Others: hot water every morning and evening for washing purposes / boiled water to fill in your water bottle every morning and night, and at lunch time if requested with enough time ahead
First-aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle.
Private transport from Tinki to Cusco, including transfer to your hotel in Cusco
What is not Included:
Breakfast on the first day
Lunch and Dinner on the last day
pricePrice per person $650.00 (Minimum 2 persons; departures all year except February)We include a horse that will carry your personal belongings in all of our treks at no additional cost.Discounts
Student Discount (with valid ISIC card) – $25
Under 15 Discount – $25
Under 7 Discount – $35
Hiking poles - US$15.00 (pair)
Sleeping bag - 4 season - US$30.00
Private Tent - US$30.00
air mattress -$15
horses- Our service includes 8kg carried by our horses per person, but if you would like an upgrade:
1. Because of the strict regulations of the Machupicchu Park, once you have made your reservation, you cannot cancel the space that you have reserved. You also may not alter the name or date of the reservation. If you are unable to come on the date you have reserved, we cannot reimburse you.
2. The $200 deposit is non-refundable. We cannot reimburse the entrance fee to the Inca Trail because the permits are non-refundable and EXPLORE ADVENTURES purchases the tickets from Machupicchu Park when you reserve your spot.
3. If you cancel between 30 and 10 days before your trek, you must pay 50% of the total cost.
4. If you cancel between 10 and 3 days before your trek, you must pay 80% of the total cost.
5. If you cancel one or two days before your trek, you must pay 100% of the total cost.
6. In the exceptional case that you decide to head back once you have started the trail, you must pay extra expenses such as food and transportation. You may join the group in Machupicchu for the walking tour and use all of the services onward.
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Cultural Immersion Experience
Travel is about meeting the local people and experiencing different ways of life. That is why EXPLORE ADVENTURES PERU immerses you in the local communities. Visit the most interesting and off the beaten track locations to experience the real Peru! Have a unique cultural adventure at local communities, COMMUNITY STAY and CULTURAL IMMERSION before each trek and take part of our tours.
We are a 100% locally owned and operated company! Proud to be Quechuas!!!
EXPLORE ADVENTURES PERU offers an assortment of adventurous treks and exciting tour packages in Peru, specially designed to appeal to most visitors' budgets that doesn't have a negative impact on the environment or adversely affect local communities. EXPLORE ADVENTURES PERU employees are local, Peruvian people. We work to invest in our own country and develop social work to offer our people a better lifestyle and provide opportunities to keep growing. This is the main difference between local companies and foreign companies and associated companies.
Our Group Services have a maximum group size of 8
Most tour operators work with a maximum of 16 on the Inca Trail, since this is authorized by law, or even higher on other trekking routes.
We treat our staff
Including chefs, porters and wranglers with the utmost respect and fairness. EXPLORE ADVENTURES not only complies with the Porter Law and Regulation, but our wages are over the minimum requested by law and above the average pay by most tour operators.
We have expert Top Tour Guides
For special requests (ornithology, history and archaeology, flora and fauna and also generalist guides). All our guides have been trained in advanced first aid by certified doctors in Peru. On all of our treks, not only on the Inca Trail, there will be a guide for every 8 guests. The head guide will ensure the utmost safety to our guests by providing them undivided attention.
We use innovative equipment
Such as an igloo, waterproof, spacious tents, camping equipment specialized for high mountain treks, such as Vaude, Eureka and Doite tents. Each tent has a capacity for 3 people, but are used only for 2 people.
We have one of the most outstanding meal services in the field
Our chefs have been highly trained by several institutes in Lima and Cusco. You should be prepared to not only have a superb trekking experience, but also a culinary one, including generous and delicious breakfasts, snacks, lunches, tea services and dinners. Our delectable menus include a variety of Peruvian and international food and also cater for vegetarian and other dietary needs at no extra cost. EXPLORE ADVENTURES PERU is recognized for its buffet meals, the quantity and quality of food, and its freshness.
EXPLORE ADVENTURES PERU performs responsibly.
Making sure to cause minimal impact on the environment of the natural protected areas where it operates.
We pay legal taxes (19% IGV or consumption tax)on all services contributing to the country’s growth and development. Further to this, we pay a 30% tax on all earnings.
Our superb treatment to our staff is not reduced in the low season: porter and chef wages are maintained, same as guide fees.
Finally, EXPLORE ADVENTURES PERU strives to provide top quality service to its clientele and will continue to listen to their comments on how to improve our services and take it to a higher level. Our clients are extremely satisfied as our numerous testimonials prove. Please read their trip reports on the Testimonials section of our website and also on Tripadvisor.