Rainbow Mountain and Ausangate Trip
Ausangate Rainbow Mountain Trek 4 days
With the help of your friendly Llama companions, you will cross 4 mountain passes, experience diverse landscapes, enter into remote Andean culture and see an unforgettable night sky. And of course, you will experience the breathtaking Rainbow Mountain and Red Mountain valleys- some of the most beautiful, natural landscapes in all of South America and the world. Come explore the Andes with us!
NEW: We now have exclusive Tour Leaders Peru Adventure Connect top-of-the-line Equipment at our featured campsites, something you won’t find with any other company. These sleeping dome tents offer a retreat in the evenings from the cold weather and provide some excellent comfort to relax and enjoy your dinner. We also have built-in Andean-style thatch tent shelters for added protection from the elements.
Why Llamas and alpacas on this trip?
Llama is currently an underutilized Eco-Friendly way to transport gear and supplies in the high mountains. With the growth of tourism, vulnerable mountain ecosystems are in jeopardy and require responsible management. This is why we use the native Llamas just as the ancient Incan cultures did.
In ancient times llamas were key to the success and survival of the Inca culture. Now we can utilize them to carry our supplies with minimal impact. Once on the trail, you will truly understand the power of these animals and why people have been packing with them for centuries, it’s just in their DNA. Their feet have a leather pad similar to that of a dog, and a split toe that allows for larger surface area and gripping ability.
When it comes to rocky, steep, and tough to navigate terrain llamas excel where some pack stock might fall short. They are smaller than horses and thus they eat and drink much less in comparison, making them much more low-impact animals and Eco Friendly.
We leave Cusco around 6:00 am by private van to the start of our trek, at the base of the impressive Ausangate mountain. For Tinqui we hike through local villages until we reach the small settlement of Upis and with an opportunity to take a dip in the local hot springs (10 soles). Here camp will already be set, and you will have the chance to enjoy the picturesque mountain backdrop as the sun sets on the mountains. Our chef will prepare lunch and dinner.
The morning starts with breakfast and a hike up Arapa Pass (4950m) before a slight descent to our lunch spot. After lunch, we continue on to Lake Pucacocha – A deep turquoise lake and a perfect stop for a break. Along the way, you will see local herders and llamas, and your expert guide will explain the history of the locals and the landscape along the way.
Our campsite tonight is located just below the towering Ausangate Mountain. Our exclusive camp features thatch shelters for our tents, for added protection from the elements. Your evening will be enjoyed with dinner in our Mountain Refugio, here you will be surrounded by mountain views and incredible hanging glaciers.
Today is difficult but short. We start with a steep ascent up Puncacocha Pass. This pass boasts incredible views and as you reach the top you are rewarded with 360 views of one of the most incredible landscapes on earth.
After conquering the pass we continue through a vivid green valley full of alpacas and llamas, if your lucky you might catch a glimpse of an Andean Condor or the rare vicuña. As we approach our destination for the night we will have camp set up for you to enjoy your surroundings and relax.
Enjoy a sunrise summit to the Rainbow Mountain!
On this morning our goal is to wake up early and leave camp by 5 am, this allows us to approach and experience the Rainbow Mountain in all of its glory with solitude. So, after a hot breakfast, and some coca tea we start with the uphill climb – Ananta Pass. From here you will see the beautiful Rainbow Mountain in the distance.
We descend to a large valley and continue walking a Peruvian flat until we are presented with the final climb to the Rainbow Mountain. From here we head downhill to the village of Qesuno where we will have lunch, and pack up the van before heading back to Cusco with a drop off at your hotel. We typically arrive back in Cusco around 6:00 PM.
Additional Trip Info
- 100% Operated by Tour Leaders Peru, we never put you with other tour operators.
- Pick up from Airport and Hotel
- Top-of-the-line equipment REI Co-op Half Dome 4 Tent. Only for Two Persons
- 8 kg per person, other companies offer you only 6 kg
- Best English Speakers Tour Leaders, We know Communication is very important in your trip
- Extraordinary Chefs! Don’t get stressed about food and forget your power bar. We serve you a 5-star outdoor restaurant with delicious organic gourmet food in your dining tent.
- Hotel Aguas Calientes with all facilities
- Free and Safe Storage in Cusco and Aguas Calientes while you are hiking and visiting Machupicchu
- Umantay Lake included (most companies skip this wonderful lake)
- Private transportation on each trip
- Perfect Location For Photographers
- Comfortable and Panoramic Train to Aguas Calientes.
- Pre-departure briefing at 7:00 pm the night before your tour in our office or your Hotel.
- Collection from your Hotel in Cusco from (05:30 am) or from Sacred Valley.
- Private transportation (Start of our trek).
- Breakfast in Urubamba in our farmhouse,
- 11 Full meals for the entire tour (4 Breakfasts, 4 Lunch 3 Dinner) + snacks (vegetarian, vegan option, gluten, wheat-free, or special diets upon your request.)
- Permit and fees for the Inca Trail Park and Machupicchu Sanctuary.
- Porters to carry (camping equipment: client tents, dining and cooking tents, table, stools, cooking gear, stove, gas container, cutlery, plates, food, and fresh vegetables).
- 7-kilogram duffle bags (per Person)
- 2 Excellent experienced top tour guides (9-16 person / 6-8 with 1 tour guide)
- 2 expert gourmet mountain cooks, assistants.
- Hot drinks every afternoon include popcorn.
- Boiled water provided from 2nd day.
- 2 people per tent, clean, new, spacious (4 people REI Half Dome 4 tents).
- Thick, comfortable sleeping mattress,
- Buckets of hot water for washing in your tent every day.
- Biodegradable soap and hand cleansing gel.
- Emergency First-aid kit and Oxygen assistance.
- 3-4 hours guided tour in Machupicchu
- Round trip Bus Ticket from Aguas Calientes to Machupicchu.
- Tourist Expedition train return to Poroy Station or Ollantaytambo.
- Bus to Cusco
- Sleeping bag (4 season -Minus 8ºC)
- Tips for the trekking crew, Guides, Cooks, and porters at your discretion.
- Flight Ticket to Cusco.
- Accommodation in Cusco. (see recommendation)
- Travel Insurance. (check that your insurance covers you for treks above 4,200 masl) and (COVID-19)
We are excited to be part of your adventure and lead you to one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Make sure to book your tour in advance. Only 500 people a day are permitting on the Inca Trail of which 250 are reserved for tourists. Machu Picchu allows 2500 tourists daily. Don’t miss your adventure!
From: $ 656 per person Group Service
Note: An initial deposit of $250.00 is required to reserve your spot. We require this deposit to buy train and bus tickets, entrance fees to Machu Picchu, Inca trail admission ticket, and for your return transportation. The remaining balance is due 21 days prior to your trek. Please see our Terms and Conditions.
If you want to climb Huayna Picchu make sure to book in advance as there are only 400 permits allowed daily to this location.
$40 per person Please notify us during your booking if you wish to purchase this upgrade.
From Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo: Prices vary from $57.00 to $73.00 per person one-way.
Machupicchu Mountain offers even more magnificent views than Huayna Picchu. There are also only 400 permits allowed daily to this location. A 360-degree view of Machupicchu and the surrounding valley and glaciers are seen from this mountain.
US$35 per person Please notify us during your booking if you wish to purchase this upgrade.
Additional Night in Aguas Calientes hotel
The price depends on the season and Hotel availability.
If you did not have the opportunity to book an additional upgrade this one is available for free. It is an hour and a half round trip hike.
If you did not have the opportunity to book an additional upgrade this one is available for free. It is a two-hour round-trip hike.
- Long-sleeved Thermal Shirt
- Thermal form-fitting pants
- Polar Fleece
- Trekking pants
- Thick socks
- Waterproof Jacket
- Waterproof pants (optional)
- Insulated Jacket
- Cold weather Hat
- Buff/ handkerchief
- Sun hat
- Backpack 20-30 L
- Waterproof cover for backpack
- Trekking shoes (waterproof and firm)
- Sport shoes/ sandals for campsites
- Camping pillow
- Sleeping bag liner (optional)
- Sturdy water bottle
- Trekking poles
- Plastic bags for wet items
- Toiletry kit (toothbrush, wet wipes, etc)
- Swimsuit/ towel
- Sunscreen (SPF 50+ recommended)
- Sunscreen lip protector
- Insect repellent
- Personal Medications
- Motion sickness tablets for the van ride
- Camera/ Extra battery
- Personal snacks
- Hand warmers (optional)
- Leisure book for evenings
- Cash and small coins
Items for rent
- Single Tent $40 (if you wish to sleep alone)
- Sleeping Bag $20 per person (minus 5 degrees Celsius)
- Air Mattress $20 per person (REI inflatable mattress)
- Professional Walking Poles $20 per pair
- Backpacks $25
- Head Lamp $10
- Extra kilograms $10/kg (Example 5kg=$50)
We are available 24/7
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Food & Drink
Healthy Organic Gourmet meals in all of your trips
Daily Seasonal Food on each trip and Tours
Peruvian cuisine has only recently exploded onto the international culinary stage, but Peruvians have always been crazy about their nation’s culinary heritage, and they steadfastly cling to the traditional, multiculti flavors of home. Even in the face of modern gastronomic innovation. A range of climates, from high altitude to low, offers an impressive diversity of produce. Yes, that means potatoes over 3800 kinds but also a variety of corn and other grains, to say nothing of the country’s native aji chilies that are often puréed into sauces.
Coffee, Tea, Water, & Assorted Beverages
Every morning and afternoon, before and after your daily hikes you will find hot drinks and snacks in your dining tent.
*Special Diets Available Upon Request
Why You Should Travel with Tour Leader Peru?
Free luggage storage when you are traveling or Hiking with us
REI Camping Equipment for each trip
We are not affiliated with this REI Brand But as a local Tour operator we support local business and our customer enjoy their private Sleeping tent only for two persons learn more in our Camping Equipment for Inca trail
Private Eco Toilets
We do not share public toilet along the Inca trail we carry our portable ECO Toilets Only for our Groups
Peruvian Gourmet Food on each Tours
Food Include in each Trek, Vegetarian option available. we really take care of your gluten-free food contact with our office for any food restriction.
Private Transportation on each trip
As a responsible tour operator in Peru, we do not share our mobility with other tourists, all our transportation is only for your group or family members.
Best Chaskis (Porters)
We do not overbear our staff, they are principal resources in this travel industry
We leave no trace
We carry all our Trash From The begging to the end of each hike keeping clean all our hiking trail
- Private and Group Tours
- Small-Group Tours (consisting of 8 people)
- Escorted Bus Tours
- Independent City Stays
- Multi-Destination Rail Packages
- Customized Travel Vacations
- Custom Groups and Individuals Packages
- Group Air Packages
Book with Huayna Picchu Mountain
Book with Machu Picchu Mountain
Machu Picchu Visitor Policy
Have a Question?
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AUSANGATE HIKE FAQ
The trail itself is breathtaking, but the end of the trail is a spectacular sight as you reach the ancient ruins of Machu Picchu at sunrise. The classic Inca trail runs 26 miles (42 km) long, is usually hiked over 4 days and 3 nights and is tucked away in the beautiful Andes mountains in Peru.
How hard is the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu?
Hiking the Inca Trail is an experience that should inspire excitement, invoke a little bit of fear, stoke jealousy amongst your friends, and stir a sense of wonder in your soul.
One of the most popular things to do in South America – and one of the world’s most famous hikes – the Inca Trail is the sort of singular adventure for which we all travel.
Our Own Advice
After our own hike, we wanted to share our hard-earned insights, advice, and tips to help you plan and prepare for your own successful Trail experience – all neatly whittled down into this comprehensive guide.
Ready? Here’s everything you need to know before doing the Inca Trail hike.
Are there toilets on the Inca Trail?
This is where the bad news begins. Inca Trail toilets are not the most hygienic, clean or private affairs. You’ll be lucky if your toilet has a lock. On the first day the toilets are usually fairly decent and clean. However, as you venture further along the trail the quality rapidly decreases.
Our Inca Trail toilets – Portable option
As a tour operato, the best option on the Inca Trail is to hire a tour company that provides a portable toilet all the way up. These are known as ‘toilet tents’.
Although not as common, this is probably one of the most important things we would recommend when deciding on what tour operator to use.
Our Own Toilets
Our Toilet sit and tent are clean and only used by your group. You’ll be able to sit on a toilet drum within the privacy of a tent, and if there are any issues, we will solve them immediately.
When To Book The Inca Trail Trek 4 Days
The government has strictly limited the number of people permitted on the Inca Trail (permits are issued to about 200 trekkers per day plus 300 porters these 500 permits include 4 days Inca trail).
We recommend that you make a trek booking as early as possible we recommend 4 months in advance.
How Much Cost The Inca Trail?
The price tag for hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu depends largely on the tour company, package, and guide you choose. Here are some of the general costs, plus actual specifics from our own recent treks on 2021.
Doing the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu independently is not an option. The Peruvian government limits the number of hikers on the trails each day.
The general cost for the Inca Trail trek: $600
On average, the classic Inca Trail hike costs around $600/person (this generally includes transportation to the trailhead from Cusco, a guide, porters, three meals a day, hiking permits, entry to Machu Picchu, and tents). You can find it even cheaper.
But besides the advertised sticker price, there are a few other things to consider when choosing a tour company.
Your Bugged $
Even though we tend to focus on budget traveling, it’s good to remember that sometimes the cheapest option isn’t always the best option. Cheaper companies for the Inca Trail often have larger groups (15-25 people), provide smaller meals, and/or no snacks.
Some even have a bad reputation for inadequately providing their porters (i.e. lacking rain ponchos, jackets, or even proper hiking shoes). I was surprised by how many people online
How Many Miles is The Inca Trail from km 82?
We’ve outlined our own route on the Inca Trail below and, in broad terms, this is the sort of itinerary you can expect (note that this relates solely to the days spent on the hike, not the days of traveling to/from Cusco and Ollantaytambo):
Travel from Ollantaytambo to km.82 in the morning and hike to the campsite
Distance | Approx. 6.8 miles/ 11 km
Elevation Gain | 350 meters
Difficulty | Moderate, with a steep tiring section towards the end.
Early rise to hike through the cloud forest and up to Dead Woman’s Pass and the descent to the campsite
Distance | Approx. 7.5 miles/ 12km
Elevation Gain | 1,115 metres
Difficulty | High, this is the hardest day of walking but after you reach DWP, it’s mostly downhill.
Early rise to hike the most photogenic section of the Trail
Distance | Approx. 9.6 miles/ 15.5km
Elevation Gain | Minus 1,000 metres
Difficulty | Moderate to a little difficult as there are several steep sections.
Very early rise (3 a.m.) to reach the entry check-point and hike 1-2 hours to the Sun Gate and Machu Picchu.
Distance | Approx. 3.1 miles/ 5 km
Difficulty | You’re almost at the end and Machu Picchu, you should be hopping, skipping, and jumping all the way there!
Best time to hike Inca Trail
Best Months For Hiking Inca Trail
Machu Picchu hike difficulty
First, the numbers: if you tackle the classic four-day Inca Trail you’ll have 24-26 miles to trek (depending on which trailhead you set out from), over 2,000 meters to haul yourself up and level yourself down, and over 3,000 steps to deal with in total.
In terms of fitness and technical challenge, this is considered to be a trek of moderate difficulty. The effort required, though, isn’t evenly distributed across the four days.
Rather, the greatest lung-bursting effort is front-loaded into the first day and a half.
The High Point
Dead Woman’s Pass, is – at 4,198 meters – definitely the toughest of the three passes, both in terms of the potential effects of altitude and the sharpness of the elevation gain.
There are, however, a number of campsites on the way to this first pass, and some groups opt to make the second day easier by staying at the highest campsite on the first night.
Peruvian authorities are allowing visitors to change their Machu Picchu entry tickets. And tour operators can change Inca Trail permits.
I’ve included a link to see information about the new rules at Machu Picchu, a link to the new Machu Picchu website, and other tips to help you navigate your way through the process of canceling or changing your trip to Peru.
This is an unprecedented opportunity to perhaps salvage some of your expenses if you canceled a trip to Machu Picchu. The borders of Peru are closed and train service to Machu Picchu is suspended since March 17, 2020, to limit the spread of Covid19.
The Peru government has extended the border closing now until October 30, 2020. However, they announced that international flights to Peru will resume on January 1, 2021.