Your day starts in Cusco where you are picked up at 8:00 am for a 3-hour trip in a private van to the start of the trail “at Quesiuno” (4400m). We then start to walk uphill for approximately 2 hours until we reach our campsite. Our experienced team will set up camp and mules will carry the luggage for this hike.
Depending on how you are feeling on arrival to the campsite, you may want to hike up to see the rainbow mountain for the stunning sunset or you may decide to rest. Our specialized cook will prepare dinner and we will rest early to wake up early the next day. We can then take advantage of being the first people to see “Vinicunca” at sunrise before the hordes of day-trippers arrive!
After an early breakfast, we will enjoy the amazing landscapes and take a 1-hour hike (approx.) to Rainbow Mountain and take advantage of the sunrise and be the first people to see the spectacular views.
After, you will embark on your hike back down to the trailhead (about 2 hours) where you will have your lunch. Our private vehicle will wait for us to depart back to Cusco, where the drive will take around 3 hours.
Safety & preparation
The hike to the rainbow mountain is challenging. Pre-acclimatization is a must! It will take a positive attitude and you are constantly at a high elevation (above 4200m). Make sure you are rested up to start this journey. It is a good idea to have a day or two of acclimatization prior to the trek and drink plenty of water before and during the trek.
What's normally included
Included in the price for this trip is normally your own private transport, meals along the way, all your equipment (tent, sleeping bags, etc.) and a fluent English, Spanish, or Quechua-speaking guide who is trained at high elevation trekking and emergency first aid. Your guide will also be carrying a first-aid kit. All entrance fees are included, as well. If needed, you can also have mules to carry your gear.
Understanding the weather
Weather in the Andes can be unpredictable. Please be prepared, bring warm clothes (down jacket, hat, gloves, and windbreaker), sunscreen, at least 2 liters of water (per person) water will be provided at lunch and dinner, a hat to protect you from the sun, sunglasses, and your camera and fully charged batteries. Maybe some extra snacks depending on personal preference as we provide large, hearty meals!