Trip Reports: Cordillera Huayhuash Circuit, Peru - June 2010
In June of 2010 I fulfilled one of my dreams – to trek around the remote and rugged Cordillera Huayhuash mountain range in Peru. In the city of Huaraz, the base for most of the expeditions in the Cordillera Blanca and Huayhuash, I signed on to a 10 day trek with burros to carry all our camping gear, an arriero (burro driver), a guide, and a cook for all our meals! Deluxe! Not only that, but our random assortment of people turned out to be a good group and we all had a great time together. Below are a bunch of photos from the trek, in chronological order.
As if the trek wasn’t awesome enough, about halfway through we camped next to some hot springs. Our guide managed to get us exclusive access to the hot springs at night, and even brought us homemade Pisco Sours! Here’s a long exposure of the hot springs pool with the stars above.
Speaking of stars, they are incredible in the Cordillera Huayhuash, far from any major city lights. Also, for the first time I can ever remember, I could see both the Big Dipper and the Southern Cross at once.
Our group had decided unanimously the previous evening to spend an extra day on the trek so that we could explore the Siula valley, the scene of Joe Simpson’s epic adventure as documented in the book and film Touching the Void.
We hiked into the remote village of Huayllapa to spend a night and restock supplies. With no road and no cars, this town was a pleasure to visit, and the local kids were even more eager to see us gringos.
We were all pretty stoked to have a nice home cooked meal (and lots of beer!) and we all ended up cutting loose that night!
After a 6,000 foot descent into the valley, we got to the village of LLamac - the end of our wonderful journey through the Cordillera Huayhuash!