Ausangate trek to Rainbow Mountain

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Overview

Known as one of the most precious and sacred mountains in the Vilcanota Mountain Range, the snowcapped Ausangate is well recognized as the highest mountain in Cusco region. Located approximately a 3-hour drive from Cusco city we begin this incredible 5-day trek.

As we set off on our Andean adventure prepare to be amazed at the most remarkable colors of nature. Admire turquoise lagoons, soaring glaciers, rolling farmlands, and the spectacular snowcapped Ausangate mountain alongside the iconic Rainbow Mountain.

Prepare for a wonderful adventure as you learn about this sacred area. Discover the magic of the region as you trek through one of the most beautiful landscapes in Peru.

Duration

5 Days / 4 Nights

Season

April – November 

This trek is best in the dry season

Location:

Depart Cusco, return Cusco

Itinerary

Day 1Cusco - Qoñamuro - Upis

Depart Cusco early morning and drive for 3 hours towards the town of Ocongate. On arrival to the town of T’inki, the trail takes us to the starting point at Qoñamuro. The first leg of our hike is approximately 6 hours walking, with lunch and breaks, to the first camp located at Upis. The camp is located in marshy terrain inform of the snowcapped peak of Ausangate mountain at 6327m (29,760ft).

Information:
Walking Time: 6 hours approx.
Walking Distance: 5.8 kms (elevation gain 600m/1965ft)
Starting Point: Q’oñamuro, 3900m/12,795ft
First Camp: Upis, 4500/14,765ft

Day 2Upis - Pucacocha

Depart from camp and ascend through the passage of Arapa, which is located at 4800m (15,750ft) walking for around 9 hours until we reach the destination of our next camp in Pucacocha. This camp is surrounded by three lakes in a magnificent staggered form located on the western flank of the Ausangate mountain. If you are lucky, you will be able to see some small mini avalanches high up on the peak, a very intriguing natural phenomenon to witness from our camp, at 4700m (15,420ft).

Information:
Walking Distance: 9 kms
Walking Time: 9 hours approx.
Height of first pass: 4800m/15,750ft
Starting point: Upis 4500m/14,760ft
Second camp: Pucacocha 4700m/15,420ft

Day 3Pucacocha - Rainbow Mountain - Pinhaya

We depart the campsite early with a 1-hour uphill climb to the Surimana pass, before descending towards Vinicunca, better known as Rainbow Mountain, arriving before the day trippers. After spending some time appreciating this unique geological phenomenon, we will continue our descent towards the Ausangate Cocha Lake.

Enjoy a hearty lunch surrounded by breathtaking scenery. With our energy levels replenished, we will hike for around 2 hours towards the highest pass on the trek, Palomani of 5190m (17,030ft). before descending towards the Machuraccay Valley connected with the Phinaya Valley. Here we will find our camp located close to a local village at an altitude of 4500m (14,765ft).

Information:
Walking Time: 9 hours approx. (Including lunch and breaks)
Walking Distance: 14 kms
Starting Point: Pucacocha, 4700m/15,420ft
Height of the first pass, Surimana: 4870m/15,980ft
Height of Vinicunca (Rainbow Mountain): 5040m/16,535ft
Height of second pass, Palomani: 5190m/17,030ft
Height of Pinhaya Camp: 4500m/14,765ft

Day 4Pinhaya - Otorongococha Lake

Another early morning departure with a gentle ascent through the Phinaya Valley; leaving behind the breathtaking views. After walking for a couple of hours through the valley, we will begin the ascent to our last pass; Ccampa pass, located at 5180 meters (16,995ft).

After climbing for 3 hours, we then begin a 2-hour descent towards our next camp at the Otorongococha Lake; an incredible destination with three large and three small lakes considered sacred since ancient times.

Information:
Walking Time: 9 hours
Walking Distance: 14 kms
Starting point: Pinhaya, 4700m/15,420ft
Height of the last pass, Ccampa: 5180m/16,995ft
Height of the last camp, Otorongococha Lake: 4480m/14,700ft

Day 5Otorongococha Lake - Paqchanta

Our final day will be little more relaxed with a later departure from camp. Descend for approximately 3 hours towards the community of Paqchanta, which is located at 4200m (13,780ft). Once we get to the village we have the option to take a dip in the natural thermal baths or we can take the transfer diretcly back to Cusco.
If you decide to enjoy the thermal baths, there is also the possibility of having your final lunch in the local village.

Information:
Walking Time: 3 hours
Walking Distance: 5 kms
Starting point: Otorongococha Lake, 4480m/14,700ft
End of the trail: 4200m/13,780ft
Return by car: 3 hours approx.

Gallery
Included services
Not included services
What to take?
  • Round trip transportation from Cusco
  • Bilingual guide
  • Double tents with high quality sleeping mats
  • Dining tents and professional cook
  • 2 shower tents
  • All food included during the trek
  • First aid kit and oxygen tank
  • Horses to carry equipment.
  • Pre/post trek hotels in Cusco
  • Personal travel insurance
  • Tips
  • Sleeping bags (we offer rental).
  • Short Sleeve t-shirt
  • Long Sleeve t-shirt
  • Polar or wool sweater and / or trousers
  • Lightweight trousers
  • Thermal underwear
  • Medium-weight synthetic fiber or feather coat
  • Light hat and wool cap
  • Rain Jacket
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Lightweight gloves
  • Synthetic or medium-weight wool stockings
  • Hiking boots
  • Sleeping bag (-5C to 0C)
  • Day backpack
  • Waterproof canvas suitcase/backpack
  • Sunglasses, sun block, lip balm
  • Flashlight with batteries
  • Towel.
  • Why should you tour with us?

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    Dates
    START DATEEND DATEDETAILSSTATUS
    20/04/201825/04/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    27/04/201802/05/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
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    01/06/201806/06/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekGuaranteed
    08/06/201813/06/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
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    29/06/201804/07/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
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    13/07/201818/07/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    20/07/201825/07/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    27/07/201801/08/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
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    31/08/201805/09/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    07/09/201812/09/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    14/09/201819/09/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
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    12/10/201817/10/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    19/10/201824/10/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    26/10/201831/10/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    02/11/201807/11/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    09/11/201814/11/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    16/11/201821/11/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    23/11/201828/11/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    30/11/201805/12/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    07/12/201812/12/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    14/12/201819/12/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    21/12/201826/12/2018Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
    28/12/201802/01/2019Vilcanota Mountain Range and Rainbow Mountain TrekTwo more to open
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