Santa Cruz Mini Trek 4 days
The Classic Santa Cruz Trek is one of the most popular trekking routes in the Cordillera Blanca (white-mountain range). The trek takes you through fertile alpine valleys, has views of magnificent, spiraling high glaciated peaks, flower-filled meadows and glacier-fed turquoise lakes.
- Things to bring
Santa Cruz Mini Trek 4 days
Day 1: Huaraz / Cashapampa / Llamacorral
After the breakfast in your hotel our team pick you up then drive in our private bus north from Huaraz to the village of Cashapampa, approximately a 3 hour drive which is the trail head and starting point of our Santa Cruz trek. In Cashapampa we meet our arrieros who load all of our equipment onto our donkeys. After hiking through the Santa Cruz Valley for approximately 5 to 6 hours, we reach our first overnight camp at Llamacorral situated at an altitude of 12,467 ft / 3800m. Meals Included: Snack, Lunch. Tea Time and Dinner
Day 2: Llamacorral /Taullipampa
Your second day on the trail is pleasant and enjoyable. After breakfast we start our hike passing beside the beautiful glaciated lakes of Ichiccocha (small lake) and Jatuncocha (big lake). Cocha means lake in Quechua. We continue hiking up the valley filled with Lupine plants and surrounded on both sides with very high, beautiful, Andean white-capped peaks until we reach the switch back trail which ascends up to Alpamayo Base Camp. We’ll ascend for approximately 45 min - 1 hour to get to the view point where you’ll relax and enjoy the splendid summit views of the majestic mountains of Alpamayo, Quitaraju, Artesonraju, Paron and Aguja. After enjoying these awesome views, we then descend down hill for about 1½ hours to our second overnight camp at Taullipampa 13,944 ft / 4250m Alternatively, if you choose the one additional day of the 5 day trek, we would leave your visit to Alpamayo Base camp for the next half day hike and then this second day hike would be straight to camp. Meals Included: Breakfast, Snack, and Lunch. Tea Time & Dinner
Day 3: Taullipampa / Paria Valley
This day we reach the highest elevation during our trek. After leaving our Taullipampa camp at 13,944 ft / 4250m we make a gradual ascend for about 2 ½ to 3 hours until we reach the Punta Union pass at 4750 where we enjoy the magnificent panoramic views of the mountain landscape, turquoise lakes and experience the Andean fresh air at this high altitude. From our panoramic vantage point we will now cross over from the Santa Cruz valley and descend into the rich lush Paria Valley for approximately 4 hours to our last overnight camp at Paria 12,467ft / 3800m. Alternatively, If you choose the 5 day trek, we can either spend this third day resting or visit the spectacular views from Cerro Centillo or choose do a half day hike to Arhuey cocha at Arhuey Valley where the Alpamayo base camp is located. Meals Included: Breakfast, Snack, Lunch, Tea Time & Dinner
Day 4: Paria / Vaquería / Huaraz
The last day of your trek we hike down at a relaxed pace for approximately 3 hours as we soon pass directly through the village of Huaripampa where we have the opportunity to meet the local, friendly Quecha people, take memorable photos of their traditional houses their farmland and colorful garments. We continue on out last segment of our trek ascending up the side of a ridge to the settlement of Vaqueria where our private bus awaits us to transport us to the breath-taking views of the Portachuelo Pass, From this vantage point, you’ll capture spectacular panoramic views of Mt. Huascarán, Huandoy, Pisco and Chacraraju. We then descend down the amazing 32 switch-back mountain pass road into to Llanganuco valley then finally returning you to your Huaraz hotel after an approximately 5 hour drive. Meals Included: Breakfast, Snack, Lunch.
All departure and arrival times are approximate.
- Pick-up from your hotel
- Transportation Huaraz - Cashapampa Village and Llanganuco village - Huaraz.
- A local experienced English - Spanish tour guide.
- Entrance fees to tourist sites.
- Hot water every morning and evening after the trek for washing purposes + filtered and boiled water to fill up your water bottle every morning, night, and at lunch time if requested.
- Professional chef, Chefs helper, cooking equipment ( surgical steel )
- Horses to carry the camping equipment.
- Assistant Tour Guide (for groups of 9 or more people).
- Camping gear: Double waterproof tents ( 4 person capacity tent, to allow for higher comfort and keeping the backpacks ) + dining tent with tables and chairs + kitchen tent + toilet tent + tent for our guides, and staff.
- Vegetarian food available upon request with no extra charge
- 4 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Afternoon Snacks and 4 Dinners
- First aid kid.
- Bio-degradable personal hand soaps and detergents.
- Drop-off at your hotel
What is not included
- Tips or gratuities for guides, drivers, cooks, porters, etc.
Things to bring
- Hat or cap to protect from the sun.
- Sun cream (factor 35 recommended), lip salve, sun glasses.
- Money belt + emergency money
- Water bottle (mineral water can be bought throughout Peru)
- Camera + Batteries (Batteries can easily be bought in Peru and is of excellent quality).
- Waterproof jacket/rain poncho
- Original passport.
- Swimsuit (if you plan on visiting the hot springs.
- Toiletries, towel and toilet paper
- Insect repellent
- Comfortable walking boots with good ankle support.
- Sleeping bag.
- Backpack (65 litres should be quite sufficient).
- Clothes: long trousers (lightweight), T-shirts, short-sleeved shirt, long-sleeved shirt, pair shorts, Underwear and socks (thermal underwear is highly recommended, being light, warm and makes good nightwear on cold nights), Fleece jacket.