The Huayhuash Circuit is a highly recommended high altitude, remote 10-day trek in glorious alpine scenery.
It is for those who seek a challenging, beautiful, quiet and little frequented route. The tiny villages en route look blissfully out of touch with the rest of the world!
Together with the Cordillera Blanca, the Cordillera Huayhuash mountain range is widely reputed to be the best mountain trekking region in the world outside of the Himalaya and is well supported by the town of Huaraz.
Even for the experienced trekker, this is a mouth watering experience. The basic facts of this trek speak for themselves: 10 days of glorious trekking, remote, it crosses 7 Passes (all over 4600m) and camping every night above 4000m. In doing so it passes through through lush valleys, emerald glacial lakes and tiny rural villages. Whilst the Inca Trail attracts the vast majority of attention due to Machu Picchu, it is no trekking match for the Huayhuash Circuit.
This trip flies London – Lima, overnight hotel before driving up to Huaraz to acclimatise. The trek begins at Llamac and treks what is an anti-clockwise circuit. The first Pass (Punta Cacanan, 4750m) comes immediately on Day 2 and after that, they just keep on coming with a rest day in amongst it all when needed.
There is a final night in Huaraz before driving back to Lima (overnight hotel) and your return flight to the UK.
- World class trekking region
- Crosses 7 high altitude passes; all over 4600m
- Based out of lovely town of Huaraz
- Time in Lima
Clothing and Equipment – No specialist equipment is required. Please refer to our Kit List webpage.
The Zika Virus. Please read this fact sheet on the Zika Virus if you intend to travel to Peru.
Day 1. Depart UK, arrive Lima, overnight hotel
For Land Only packages, your trip starts on arrival at the group hotel in Lima.
On arrival in Lima, transfer to the hotel in the Miraflores area of the city. You will be given timings for the following morning.
Day 2. Transfer to Huaraz
You will be driven to the bus station for your comfortable journey up to Huaraz. Sit back, relax and enjoy the changing scenery. It is a 400km journey (8 – 9 hrs). You will be met in Huaraz and transferred to your hotel and briefed about the following days. B.
Day 3. Huaraz (3010m), Acclimatisation day
After breakfast, we drive to Pitec (1 hr) for a 3hr acclimatisation trek up to Churup Lake (4460m). The whole day takes approx 6 -7 hrs and provides a real taster for what is to come. Overnight back in Huaraz. B
Day 4. Drive Huaraz – Llamac, Trek to Quartelhuain Camp (4170m)
A few hours of driving to the village of Llamac before a straightforward but delightful trek along the Rio Llamac to the village of Quartelhuain. A steady climb through an often narrow valley with plenty of local life. BLD
Day 5. Quartelhuain – Mitucocha (4150m)
A good climb up to the first Pass (Punta Cacanan (4700m)) with great views of Ronday and Jirishanca before descending to the camp at the beautiful lake Laguna Mitucocha. 6 hrs, BLD
Day 6. Mitucocha – Carhuacocha Camp (4250m)
A morning climb up to the Pass Paso de Carhuac (4650m) before descending to the camp at the big lake Laguna Carhuacocha. 6 hrs, BLD
There is an alternative, more demanding route that crosses a 4800m Pass. This will be discussed on trek and is optional
Day 7. Carhuacocha – Rest Day
Whilst the rest day is programmed here, it may change depending on numerous factors, BLD
Day 8. Carhuacocha – Huayhuash Camp (4250m)
A moderate climb up to Pass Carnicero (4600m) and make an easy descent to camp either at isolated Laguna Carnicero 4300m (also called Juraucocha) or 30 minutes walk further on to another camp in the open valley of Huayhuash (4250m), 5-6hrs, BLD
There is another demanding optional route available should it be appropriate. Not compulsory.
Day 9. Huayhuash – Viconga Camp (4300m)
Climb up to the Pass Portachuelo (4,650m) from where you look across to the Cordillera Raura and the snow topped peak Leon Huacanan. Skirt around the large lake Laguna Viconga before walking up the valley ½ hour to set up camp (4300m). 6½ hrs, BLD
There are some hot springs near Viconga!
Day 10. Viconga – Huanacpatay (4150m)
It is a 3 hrclimb to the Cuyoc Pass at 5,000m; the highest Pass in the huayhuash trekking region. From the Pass, you will see the cordillera raura and the mountains of the cordillera huayhuash. It is just a 1 hr descent to San Antonio Camp. 4-5hrs, BLD
Day 11. Huanacpatay – Huatiac (4250m)
Predominantly descending, this is a glorious path following the river down to a lush plain and into the settlement of Huayllapa village (3490m). We then climb steadily in the afternoon for 2 – 2 ½ hours to the campsite on top of the flat prairie Huatiaq. 6 hrs, BLD
Day 12. Huatiac – Jahuacocha (4100m)
A challenging day with two high passes in quick succession. An initial climb up to Punta Tapush (4770m), descend past Laguna Susucocha before ascending again over the Yaucha Pass (4800m). In between the two, the altitude drops to about 4400m. The valley descent finally opens out by the lake of Jahuacocgha. BLD
There is an optional route, using the trekking peak of Diablo Mudo (5350m). Requires crampons (not supplied) and rope (supplied). This route crosses Punta Tapush, the trekking peak and then Jahuacocgha (doesn’t cross Yaucha Pass).
Day 13, Jahuacocha – Llamac – Huaraz
After b’fast, you head off to your final Pass. It is a gradual climb to Pampa Llamac (4300m). Take a good look as it is a long descend all the way back to Llamac. 5 ½ hrs, BL
In Llamac the bus will be waiting to take us back to Huaraz for hot showers!! Hotel. Via the Pampa Llamac Pass (4300m). Rest, overnight
Day 14, Drive to Lima, overnight hotel
Transfer back to Lima and the hotel by public bus/taxi. B
Day 15, Depart Lima, flight back to UK
Transfer back to the international airport by taxi. B
This is usually an evening flight. Your luggage can be stored in the hotel during the day
Day 16, Arrive UK
Note – B: Breakfast L: Lunch D: Dinner