- Fighting Fatigue on First Day in Lima, Peru
- The Desert Oasis of Huacachina, Peru
- Flying over the Nazca Lines in Peru
- Altitude Sickness in Cuzco
- Machu Picchu, 9 Years Later
- Salkantay Trek To Machu Picchu Journal
- Salkantay to Machu Picchu Day 1: Mollepata to Soraypampa
- Salkantay to Machu Picchu Day 2: Soraypampa to Salkantay Pass to Huayracpunko
- Salkantay to Machu Picchu Day 3: Huayracpunko to Colpapampa
- Salkantay to Machu Picchu Day 4: Colpapampa to La Playa
- Salkantay to Machu Picchu Day 5: La Playa to Llactapata
- Salkantay to Machu Picchu Day 6: Llactapata to Aguas Calientes
- Salkantay to Machu Picchu Day 7: Machu Picchu
- In Review: 18 Days of Backpacking in Peru
Previous entry: Day 2 – Soraypampa to Salkantay Pass to Huayracpunko
I had another uncomfortable night of sleep. I would sleep for 2 hours, wake up, and take a long while to fall asleep again. Rinse and repeat. Camping at 12,000 feet, the condensation was even worse than the previous day. The inside of the tent was completely damp, and it took a while to dry it in the morning. At least the views from my tent were amazing.
My knee was feeling fine after a night of rest.
Just like the previous day, Gerald and Rich left before me. I took my sweet time and left over an hour later at around 10:30am. There was a very slight drizzle for the first hour or so. This was going to be a short and easy day, a good way to recover from the toughest section we had just done the previous day. The trail was pretty uneventful. Not much in terms of views.
Throughout the day, I couldn’t seem to remember this section at all. It took me 3 hours to reach Colpapampa. Once I got there I remembered right away the first farm/building to the right right away. To protect us from the rain back then, we had camped inside a storage building there the previous time.
I found Gerald and Rich sitting outside a restaurant. We bought lunch here and spent the rest of the afternoon killing time. The food (eggs, rice, fries) was pretty bland, but at that point I was happy with anything. We were allowed to camp here for free, and they even had hot showers. What a luxury. With only 2 more nights of camping to go, we didn’t had to go too long without cleanin
g ourselves. Two other smaller tour groups also camped at the back of the restaurant. We decided to take advantage of cooked food and ordered a dinner of spaghetti and tuna as well. That tasted much better.
It was a warmer than the previous night, and I was to leave the rain fly open to reduce condensation. My knee was again sore from the descent, but I was confident that the pain would be gone the next day.
Next entry: Day 4 – Colpapampa to La Playa
it’s a pleasure to read your lines about the Salkantay Trek and your pictures rise my desire to hike. Also I had to smile a little bit because of your wet tent and the condensation inside. It reminds me on your story about the JMT. 😉 In 2,5 weeks me and my girlfriend will start the JMT. We are so excited. 🙂
Well … I let my mind wander … back to the Salkantay Trek. Did you had any problems with the guide tours or was it crowded. The Salkantay Trek seems to be the only trek to hike on your own to Machu Picchu. Is that correct? What was your guidebook?
Dude, your hiking adventure is great! Perhaps I will do it some day.
Have a great time, enjoy every moment on your world trip and stay healthy!
Kind regards from rainy Germany
Thanks for the comment, Thomas. I did parts of the JMT last year in June (Ansel Adams Wilderness, Thousand Island Lake) and the mosquito situation was bad. I don’t know if you will encounter the same but be prepared for it. It might not be a bad idea to get one of those mosquito head nets. I know it looks ridiculous but I wished I had one last year.
You are correct. The Salkantay Trek is the only way to hike to Machu Picchu. I have heard from 2 people (one local) that they intent to start charging a fee and making it requirement to hire a guide starting June 2014. I haven’t been able to find something official online, but do check online (Lonely Planet forums seems to be a reliable source) if you intend to do this trek in the future. I think these changes would be very unfortunate.
The only problems I had with the tour groups were the amount of horses on the trail. It became annoying. Other than that, the other hikers didn’t bother me.
My guidebook was an old 2004 edition of Lonely Planet Trekking In The Central Andes. That book is out of print. They haven’t released a new edition. But, the trail is pretty easy to follow. You can also send me a private message if you’d like a scan of the pages from my guidebook.
Enjoy the JMT! It’s truly a wonderful adventure.
You are seeing some stupendous views. I love the foggy mountain scenes. The scenes of the restaurants and locals are wonderful. Thanks for letting lurkers enjoy your trip!
Hi Rebecca. Yes, I was really shocked by how beautiful everything was. The clouds and fog really make a huge difference. I’d say that so far, this has been the best scenery I’ve seen in my life.
Kevin, I enjoyed reading your Salkantay blogs. Were there any steep/sheer drop-offs during any parts of the hike? I’m traveling with a companion who is averse to heights. Thanks in advance!
Hi Erik. Yes, there’s a steep area in Day 4. I added the picture below to my journal for that day. As far as I remember, that was it. There were no other steep sections like this.