Huayhuash Circuit Trek - 9 Days

The Prettiest Trek in the World

Huayhuash Circuit Trek - 9 Days

The Prettiest Trek in the World

The Cordillera Huayhuash is known as being the best alpine trek on the Planet. The vast landscapes, jagged peaks, turquoise lakes and cascading river are what make this this region so special. The impressive glaciated peaks rise to over 6,600m leaving you in constant awe.

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Trip Itinerary

Day 1: Pick up from hotel in Huaraz & Transport to Cuartelhuain

Elevation: 3,400m
Hiking Time: 4-5 hours

Our transport will pick you up at your hotel at 7:00 AM. From Huaraz we start driving South for about 1 hour before turning east at Conococha towards a small mountain town called Chiquian, this is where we will have a short break to stretch our legs.

After doing so we continue our drive towards the start of the trek in Cuartelhuain (4.170 m), our first campsite.

Here is where we will meet the rest of our team for the trip including our donkey drivers and donkeys to carry the supplies.

Drive: 4.5 hours 96 km

Day 2: Cuartelhuain - Mitucocha

Elevation: 4,700m
Hiking Time: 5 Hours

After a relaxing breakfast we climb the first high altitude pass, Cacanan Punta (4.700 m), which is the natural divide between the Atlantic and Pacific Ocean. After all participants have reached the pass at their own pace, we take a break for 10-15 minutes to enjoy the views and possibly watch the Andean Condors. After our break we start hiking downhill towards Mitucocha Lake (4.270 m) from where we can appreciate the view of snow capped mountains Rondoy (5.883 m) and Jirishanca (6.094 m). Few minutes later we reach our next campsite.

Hiking: 5 hours - 6 Miles

Day 3: Mitucocha - Carhuacocha

Elevation: 4,650m
Hiking Time: 5-6 hours

Today, our trek starts with a very moderate steadily ascending trail towards the sandy Punta Carhuac (4.650 m). Today we will get larger views from the Cordillera Huayhuash including Jirishanca Chico (5.467 m), Jirishanca (6.094 m) and Yerupaja (6.617 m), the latter being the highest mountain of the Huayhuash mountain range. From here we continue hiking to the south until we reach our campsite at Carhuacocha Lake (4.150 m) in the afternoon. The rest of the afternoon we use to rest and enjoy the views.

Hiking: 5 hours - 6.2 miles

Day 4: Carhuacocha - Siula Pass - Huayhuash (Huayhuash village)

Elevation: 4,950m
Hiking Time: 8 hours

Apart from being a more difficult/strenuous day, many trekkers consider this stretch of the circuit the prettiest of the whole loop. We start hiking along the south side of the Carhuacocha Lake before turning south into the Siula Valley where the gradual ascent towards three glacier lakes, Gangrajanca, Siula Cocha and Quesillococha, starts. At Siula Cocha we take a longer break and those participants with some spare energy can climb an additional 30 meter/5 min. towards a ridge from where Grangrajanca Lake can be seen. Especially pretty are the large pieces of glacier ice floating peacefully in the water.

After our break we start the more difficult ascent towards Siula Pass at 4.950 meter - from here maybe the best panoramic view of the Cordillera Huayhuash can be appreciated. After approximately 2 hours downhill hiking towards Lake Quesillococha and Huayhuash Village (4.365 m) we reach our campsite where after a hearty dinner we spentd the night under the stars.

Hiking: 7 - 8 hours - 10 miles

Day 5: Huayhuash - Elefante pampa

Elevation: 4,795m
Hiking Time: 7-8 hours

After breakfast in Huayhuash we will start climbing up to Travesio pass at (4900m/16072ft) the highest pass of the circuit, from here we can see the peaks of Puscanturpa, Jurao, Siula, Cuyoc and Pumarinri glaciers. From here we start our descent to Elefantepampa for about 3.5 hours, where we will enjoy the landscape and beautiful scenery. Here we overnight at (4250m/13,940ft).

Hiking: 7 - 8 hours, 10 miles

Day 6: Elefantepampa – San Antonio Pass – Huallapa

Elevation: 5,000m
Hiking Time: 6-7 hours

After breakfast in Elefantepampa, we will start climb up to San Antonio Pass (4900m/16072ft) for about 2 hours, from there we will have wonderful views of Siula Lake, Sarapo Lake, Jurau Lake, where English Climber Joe Simpson made a film “Touching the Void”, we will start to descent down for the same way-valley for about 1.5 hours, then about 3 hours of descent of the Huanacpatay Valley, we will set our camp in Huallapa.

Hiking: 6- 7 hours, 8.7 miles

Day 7: Huayllapa – Huatiac – Gaspapampa

Elevation: 4,290m
Hiking Time: 8-9 hours

After breakfast in the Camp Huallapa, we will start to climb up to Tapush Pass (4800m/15744ft) for about 4 hours, arriving around 4pm, then you will have hot drinks as usual in each camp site we will have dinner and overnight in Gaspapampa.

Hiking: 7 hours, 8.7 miles

Day 8: Gaspapampa – Jahuacocha

Elevation: 4,800m
Hiking Time: 6 hours

After breakfast in the Camp we ascend Yaucha Pass at (4800m/15744ft) for about 2 hours, where we can see the nice mountains to the East such as: Jirishanca, Ninashanca, Yerupaja and others; after that we continue ascending to Jahuacocha for about 2 hours until we reach camp. Overnight Camping at (4100m/13448ft).

Hiking: 6 hours - 7 miles

Day 9: Jahuacocha – Llamac – Huaraz

Elevation: 4300m
Hiking Time: 5 hours

After breakfast in Jahuacocha we will start hiking for about 1 hour, then we will start going up to Pampallamac Pass (4300m/14104ft) for about 1.5 hours, where we can enjoy the splendid views of nice mounts such as: Yerupaja, Ninashanca, Siula and Diablo Mudo, then we go down to Llamac for about 1 hour, where transportation will be waiting for us to transfer to Huaraz 3 hours travel from Llamac to Huaraz.

Hiking: 4 - 5 hours - 6.2 miles

Additional Trip Info

  • Private tourist transport from/to your hostel/hotel
  • English speaking official guide
  • Cook
  • Donkeys & Donkey drivers
  • Complete food during the trek (vegetarian option available)
  • All camping equipment and cooking/eating utensils
  • 3 or 4 Season sleeping tents. (3 person tents with additional fly storage for every 2 clients)
  • Emergency Horse (if more than 2 guests on trek)
  • First aid kit
  • Additional beverages or meals in villages.
  • Entrance fee into the National Park
  • Breakfast on the 1st and dinner on the last day.
  • Emergency evacuation
  • Personal mountain equipment such as trekking shoes, rain/wind jacket/pants, hat, gloves, sunglasses etc.
  • Sleeping bag/ mattress (can be rented)

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