Peru IV - Ausangate

Trekking in the area of magical Ausangate mountain (6384m) was the main part of our trip. We spent 9 days up there, hiked around 100km, crossed 6 passes higher than 5000m and slept all nights above 4300m. Good acclimatization before the trek is thus essential. Although we were well prepared, I still felt the attitude. Drinking a lot of coca tea was essential to overcome the problems. Except the high attitude, very long nights presented another challenge, as sun gets down at 6pm, so be prepared for long sleep in the tent. However, sleeping is sometimes difficult, because of attitude and cold temperatures.  It is also necessary to be independent, as there is no infrastructure or mobile signal. There is enough water in the nature, however desinfection drops or filter is a must. 

Regarding logistics, we had 9 horses, 1 of them was "an emergancy horse", ready to carry us in case of a problem. There were 3 local horsemen with us. They were very fast, so before we reached the camping place, they already have been there with a delicious soup ready for us. We loved those guys. And their ability to catch a trout by hand - wow...

We did not copy the standard trek itinerary, as Richard knows the secret places:)

lets start
Alipio, the boss of horsemen and main cook. He has 70 alpacas on his farm and run a trekking agency - check their web here 
Alipio's wife is preparing the horses in Pachanta village (there are amazing thermal pools there!). The local costumes, especially their hats are supercool
this is Julio aka July and the horse called Ausangate
and Guillermo in the back, our last horseman (Pachanta village)
we were not alone in the mountains... there are a few farmers living in very basic conditions and it is nice to have some small gifts for them, especially for children
there are lot of alpacas and lamas in some valleys. Old ladies take care of them and it is amazing how those women are fast. Be prepared to pay some fee for camping on their fields
mornings were typically very cold and the sky was mostly clear (camping at Sibina Cocha - 4900m)
typical morning situation - tea and first touch of sun
horsemen's tent
after breakfest we hiked "all day" (ca from 8:30 to 16:00), horses ahead
crossed some passes (e.g. Asero pass - 5350m)
enjoying the views
ascending to the Palomani pass (5050m)
Palomani pass and little bit of rainbow mountain. "Our" dog called Negrito on the right - he joined us first day and stayed all time
lake Ausangate
typical descent through a valley
in the afternoon, the weather usually changed into "polystyren" snowing
and another freezing night ahead:)
our last camping place was the best...but Negrito was barking all night non-stop on the glacier above our heads...
the variability of landscape was extraordinal...
a few hours before the end...
last day - I have to admit, that I was tired, but happy

Peru III - Colours

Peru is full of colours and before the highlight of our journey, which was Ausangate trek, we  experienced many other smaller colourfull "highlights"...
some kind of comunity meeting in Cincero village near Cusco... agent Belma has all under controll
same village, different costumes
market in Cincero. We loved markets:)
how they make colours?
they use nature, e.g. insects parasiting on cactuses for red
Side-market in Cusco
in every conditions
amazingt taste!
and fantastic juice
raw trout and avocado, uaaaaa
 

so many different potatoes!
alcoholic drink from corn
made ladies friendly
she needs a drink!
farmacy
we bought something here without any idea what it is
acclimatization trip
and another
service station for UFO
old Cusco
salt mines
our best guide
sharing drink with local farmers
the trip in the countryside is beautifull too
Belma and quinoa