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Alpamayo Circuit with Santa Cruz Trek

Combine the  Well-known Trekking Routs in the Cordillera Blanca


This trekking program combines Alpamayo Base Camp with the classic Santa Cruz Circuit. Both the well-known and popular trekking routes combined into just one program provided you the experience of the full beauty of the Cordillera Blanca.

Known to some as the “Alpamayo Circuit”, the trek which follows the valley of Los Cedros is the least traveled and perhaps most divine hiking trails in the Cordillera Blanca. Our trek begins in the village of Hualcayan just beyond of the Cashapampa village starting point of the Santa Cruz Trek. Each day of the trip program is characterized by a unique and spectacular mountain views, be it a dazzling glaciated  lakes, high dramatic passes, the pyramidal view of Alpamayo - which was awarded the title “most beautiful mountain in the world,” a  local Quechua farm set deep in the valley with its traditional lifestyle of small communities. The trail that you’ll follow crosses over the Cordillera Blanca mountain range from east to west and then crosses back again from where it joins up with the popular Santa Cruz trail where the trek concludes at Cashapampa. There are plenty of options for side trips and several rest days are planned in to ensure that the effort of the hiking is complemented by the satisfaction of just ‘being’ in an undeniably beautiful place.

Note: The Alpamayo Circuit with conbination of Santa Cruz Trek represents a fairly demanding trek suggested for clients who are in at least average to above average fitness. Exercise preparation is your best wellness routine so that you can fully enjoy this amazing Andes trekking experience. Graded as hard to strenuous because of the terrain and altitude we hike during days trek.

Grade: hard to strenuous

Timing: 11 - 12 days

Day by day Itinerary

Day 1: Huaraz / Hualcayan village
Our Inkaland Treks team will pick you up from your hotel after breakfast and start heading out for our 5 hour comfortable van ride heading north to the village of Hualcayan situated at 9,514ft / 2900m where our donkeys and Arrieros will be waiting for us. Overnight at our camp at Hualcayan.

Day 2: Hualcayan / Wishcash
After breakfast we begin our continuous climb up a “switch back” trail from the village of Hualcayan to Wishcash 14,108 ft / 4300m hiking for approximately 4 to 5 hours. Overnight at our camp at Wishcash.

Day 3: Wishcash / Ruinapampa
From Wishcash we continue our trek ascending to the spectacular lake Laguna Cullicocha 15,912ft / 4850m where we cross our first high Pass named Osoruri 15,584ft / 4750m. From this beautiful high pass, we begin our long descent to our next camp at Ruinapampa 12,467 ft / 3800m with an approximately 8 - 9 hour hike.

Day 4: Ruinapampa / Cruze Alpamayo
A fairly easy relaxed day trekking while ascending easily up the valley to our next camp at Cruze Alpamayo 13,615ft / 4150m. This day includes approximately 3 - 4 hours of hiking.

Day 5: Cruze Alpamayo / Day Rest
This can be an optional day on the trek so as to spend an additional night at our Cruze Alpamayo camp to just chill-out appreciating the superb views of Alpamayo. With this additional day in the high Andes, we can trek to Laguna Jancarurish or visit the Alpamayo Base Camp 14,764ft / 4500m.

Day 6: Cruze Alpamayo / Safuna or Huilca
This sixth day is long and demanding hike as we ascend up to the windswept Paso Cara Cara 15,846ft / 4830m from where we capture even more breathtaking panoramic views of Alpamayo and the surrounding lakes. From this vantage point we then continue our trek to our next Paso Mesapata 14,764ft / 4500m before descending to our next camp at Laguna Safuna 13,780ft / 4200m. Today’s trek is approximately 7-8 hours. We have the option to camp at Huilca which is about 1 hour further distance from Safuna. Our trekking guide and our clients can decide on this option depending on the group’s level of fitness.

Day 7: Safuna or Huilca / Jancapampa
From Laguna Safuna or Huilca we ascend to Paso Pucajirca 15,092ft / 4600m as we next camp in the grassy valley of Jancapampa 11,811ft / 3600m which we’ll reach after approximately a 7 hour hike. With the local Quechua farm families living in this valley, we have the opportunity to meet and interact with the warm and welcoming village people.

Day 8: Jancapampa / Huecrococha
This eighth day we pass by several Quechua farming communities with their sheep and livestock as we continue our ascent up to our next Paso Tupatupa 14,436ft / 4400m before descending to our next camp alongside Laguna Huecrococha 12,959ft /3950m which we reach after approximately 7 beautifully scenic hours of trekking this day.

Day 9: Huecrococha / Tuctubamba
On our ninth day we ascend up to Paso Alto de Pucaraju 15,256ft / 4650m from where we are treated to an absolutely stunning panoramic views of mount Taulliraju, the majestic massif spiraling to 19,127ft / 5830m before we begin our steep descent to our next camp at the peaceful Tuctubamba valley 13,944ft / 4250m arriving here after an approximately 7 hours of trekking.

Day 10: Tuctubamba / Punta Union Pass/ Taullipampa
This day we approach to the Pass Punta Union at 4750m. After breakfast we ascend on  a  well market path passing small lakes on way, it is a demanding hike to the pass.  From there enjoy the magnificent panorama view  of the Santra Cruz Valley and mountain surrounded take picutres.We then descend  to Taullipampa camp site at 4250m one of the beautiful campsites during trek program.Overnigh at Taullipampa Campiste. Aproximately 7-8 hours hike

Day 11: Taullipampa / Llamacorral
This day we visit the Alpamayo basecamp and Arhuey Lake. We ascend gradually to the Arhuey valley then walk to Alpamayo base camp, just 40 minute more to see the Arhuey lake, beautiful colored lake.Then walk down on the same valley to next camp at Llamacorral  3800m.Aproximately 7-8 hours hike.

Day 12: Llamacorral / Cashapampa / Huaraz
Last day during trek easy walk down along Santa Cruz Valley to Cashapampa , following the curse of the river of the same name. Our private transportation is waiting us to take us back to Huaraz. Aproximately 4 hours hike and 3 hours’ drive.

Note: If our clients elect to conclude with the 11 day trek option, then the rest day at Cruze Alpamayo will be dropped

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