This lovely and varied hike (about 50km) is the “soft option” from Soray since the pass is lower (though still a tough 4,750m (15,580ft) and then it is mostly downhill through forested valleys, above deep ravines, ending at 1,500m.
The trek on the second day from Soray goes steeply uphill for half an hour, then comes to a series of zigzags (Siete Culebras is the local name of this strech). At the top of the seventh switchback the terrain levels out under Salkantay´s lateral moraine, and drops gently down to the small laguna Soirococha. The pass you see above is, alas, a false one; the main pass is a little further on, but the view of Salkantay looming above you more than compensates for the effort. The real pass at 4,750m is reached after 3-4 hours from the moraine, and is marked by a pile of stones , “well know as Apacheta by th locals”, which grows daily as each traveller adds his pebble to thank the APUS for a safe trip.
Then the trail descends to the left –hand side of the valley, becoming indistinct in swampy areas. And then comes a place named Huayrajmachay “eye of the wind”, from here we will have a great chance to see the beautiful Pyramid-shape of Humantay behind as you drop below the tree line, know as LA CEJA DE SELVA (“Eyebrow of the Jungle”), and walk through groves of bamboo with many orchids and other flowers and lots of hummingbirds, spectacular waterfalls, a small hot spring at Collpapampa the right place to lock out for the parakeets that abound in this area as well.
Then on the 4th day we will climb 500m. up From Lucma to Llactapata to enjoy a great lookout point and get a first view of Machu Picchu, then we will go down to Hydroelectric in order to take the local train to Aguas Calientes town where we will spend the night.
Then next morning we will enjoy Machu Picchu (please read our full itinerary below, thanks)
THE SALCANTAY TREK TO MACHUPICCHU
Salcantay Trek Departures Dates 2017: Every Day.
DAY 01 Cusco (3400 m.a.s.l.) – Mollepata – Soraypampa.
(05.30 hours aprox. Time of hike) We pick you up from the hotel at around ( 7 am ) and travel by private Bus or by Car to Mollepata District (2800m). which is a small community located down along the main road from Cusco to Abancay, then we keep travelling to Cruzpata (3050m) arriving approximately at 10:00 am, and here we start our trip and meet our arrieros “horsemen” and trek crew to help us to make easy our hike.
During the morning we walk approximately 2.30 hours going up appreciating the diversity of the flora and fauna typical from this ecological site, and then we stop to enjoy our delicious lunch at Chuñuna which is a quiet spot.
And then in the afternoon we will hike for about 3 hours and after a funny and relaxing hiking we arrive to our first campsite which is at Soraypampa (3800m) , where we have our dinner and pass the first night.
DAY 02 Soraypampa – 7 snakes Pass – Challhuay.
( 08.30 hours aprox. Time of hike)
We wake up very early then after a good breakfast, we leave from Soraypampa ( altitude 3800 m.s.n.m. ) this is the harder day because we have to climb to the 07 snakes PASS ( in this point we get 4600 m.s.n.m. of altitude), the highest part in our trip to MACHU PICCHU, where we can see the spectacular view of the second highest peak Named Salkantay a stunning snow covered mountain (6,271 m) and great views of Humantay and Huayanay mountains as well, small lakes and morraines too and of course the flora and fauna typical from this region( 05 hours aprox.).
Later going downhill we will find some streams and many kind of birds, in the afternoon finishing our hard walking we arrive to CHALLHUAY. Where we have dinner and pass the night in ours tents, from this point starts the cloud forest region where the mosquitos exist, besides the semitropical weather and native people.
DAY 03 Challhuay – La Playa. ( 06.00 hours aprox. Time of hike)
After and early breakfast approximately at 6:00 am. We begin our third day hiking until Wiñay Poqo. Where we have our lunch.
Hiking down hill is pretty easy and here you will be introduced to a high jungle niche very well know as Ceja de Selva where you will have the chance to find coca, coffee and several native fruits plantations.
In the afternoon walking more than two hours again down hill and we arrive to LA PLAYA village, we have dinner and the night in tents.
– Option for shower at the creek of Santa Teresa River, good One.
DAY 04 La Playa – Aguas Calientes Town.( 06.30 hours aprox. Time of hike)
From La Playa we take a local transportation for approximately 20 minutes to Lucma ( or just hike if not local transport is available), from here we start our climb of about 03 hours to Llactapata ( newly discovery Inca Site ) which is famous for a “great condor view of Machu Picchu”, then we enjoy our picnic box lunch then we hike down hill for about 2.30 hours to the Hydroelectric Station by 3:00 pm. Aprox. We will walk to Aguas Calientes which will lasted 2 Hours.
You may also wish to pay a visit to the town’s famous thermal springs which feel great after finishing the trail. Entrance to the springs is a small fee of $US 3.00. Allow 3 hours to really enjoy them, which is open Until 9.00 p.m.
In the evening we have dinner at Nice Restaurant, Accommodation in a Hotel in Aguas Calientes. Accommodation based in a DWB or TWB.
The Fabled City
For centuries the Lost City has been the most durable of myths about ancient Peru. Hundreds of gold-hungry Spaniards died looking, all in vain. The irony was that there were lost cities buried in the forested regions of the Andes. The 20th century has seen the discovery of more than one but none more famous and awe-inspiring as the fabled Machu Picchu.
DAY 05 Machu Picchu – Cusco.
Early wake Up (by 05: 30 a.m.), Breakfast and after to leave our Luggage at the Hotel, we will take the early Tourist bus Up to Machu Picchu, of Course with a guide English speaking, Usually we use to get Machu Picchu by 6: 50 a.m., so from this time we will be able to visit Machu Picchu of course at this time Machu Picchu is pretty empty and we will have the best chance to enjoy the beauty and the magic of Machu Picchu, because at this time is quiet.
A guided tour of about 2: 30 hours, and then you will have “happy hour time”, to explore by yourself the whole site for about 3 hours and there is time as well to climb Huayna Picchu mountain and get the best view over Machu Picchu it takes 1: 40 minutes round trip time, or option to go to the temple of the moon which is located behind Huayna Picchu Mountain.
Then We suggest that after visiting Machu Picchu that you take the bus down to Aguas Calientes by 15:00 p.m. at the latest (assuming train departs at 17:00). Buses depart every 15 minutes. Check with the guide for actual times.
There is a new shedule for trains, so the time of arriving into Cusco migh change depending on availability.
What is Included:
Collection from your hotel in the morning
Transportation by bus to the start of the trail (Mollepata – Soraypampa)
English speaking professional guide
2 persons in each 4-person capacity tent with plenty of space for your backpacks
Double thickness foam mattress
Hot water every morning and evening for washing purposes (while hiking)
Accommodations: 3 nights camping, 1 night hotel
Cook and Cooking equipment
Excellent Meals (04B,04L,04D)
food includes pancakes, omelets, soups, fresh fruit, avocado, pasta, chicken, fish, meat, rice, all rich in carbohydrates and suitable for trekking, hot drinks including coca leaf tea which is excellent for the altitude
We supply boiled water to fill in your water bottle all the time, if requested with enough time ahead (while hiking)
Teatime the first three days (tea, coffee, biscuits, popcorn)
Horses days 1-3 (for equipment and personal items) including horsemen
Dining tent with camp tables and chairs
Accommodation for our crew
First aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle
Accommodation in a hostel at Aguas Calientes town on the 4th night
Machu Picchu entrance fee
Train ticket from Aguas Calientes to Cusco, subject to availability of spots
Transfer from the train station to your hotel.
What is Not Included:
Breakfast on the first morning.
Lunch and Dinner in restaurant in Aguas Calientes on day 5 of the program.
Entrance to the thermal springs in Aguas Calientes US$4.00
Sleeping bags (4 season) can be hired in our office for US$17 for the 5 day trek.
Tips for the guide, cook and porters
What you need to bring/carry:
Sleeping bag 4 season suitable for temperatures down to -5C (can be hired from our office for US$17 for the 5 day trek)
Sleeping mattress (we will provide you with this)
Rain jacket or poncho (plastic ponchos can be purchased in Cusco for a few dollars)
Strong, comfortable footwear
One complete change of clothing (you can afford to carry more changes of clothing if you hire a personal porters, see options below)
Sweater and jacket (something warm)
Water bottle, ideally non disposable canteen (boiled drinking water will be provided)
Torch / Flashlight and batteries
Hat or cap to protect you from the sun
Sun block (sun protection cream)
Toiletries, towel and toilet paper
Selection of small snacks, chocolate, dried fruit, biscuits, energy bars etc,
Camera, plenty of film and spare batteries, cash in soles and US$
Swimsuit (if you plan on visiting the hot springs at Aguas Calientes after the trek)
Optional: walking Poles /sticks (rubber covers necessary)
You also need to bring your original passport on the trail.
Price per person US$ 380.00 based on double occupancy tent and Expedition tourists train from Machupicchu to Cusco.
We can offer a US$ 25.00 discount to students with a valid International Student Identity Card ISIC and children under the age of 12 years old.