Santa Cruz Classic Trek, Cordillera Blanca

Hike the most popular trekking circuit in the Cordillera Blanca mountain range in only 4 days. The trek heads up the spectacular Quebrada Huaripampa Valley through little native Quenual forest, crosses the Punta Union Pass at 4750m/15584ft, below stunning peaks of the Cordillera Blanca such as Taulliraju, Alpamayo, Santa Cruz and Artesonraju mountains and skirting turquoise glacial lakes. Beautiful Andean wildflowers are prolific during the trekking season.

Trip Information
Grade: Moderate

Length: 4 Days/3Nights Hike
Distance: 40Km
Maximum Altitude: 4750m/15584ft
Average: 4100m/13451ft
Season: All year round

Itinerary
Day 1: You are picked up at your accommodation and begin the journey with a spectacular scenic drive along the Callejon de Huaylas Valley and then into the Huascaran National Park, past the turquoise Llanganuco Lakes and over the Paso Portachuelo de Llanganuco Pass 4785m/15698ft and then down to Vaqueria (3700m/12139ft) which is the starting point of the trek 5 hours drive. There are opportunities for photo stops along the way. From Vaqueria our equipment is loaded onto the donkeys and we have a 4 to 5 hours hike on a gradually rising path to our campsite in the Paria Valley 3890m/12762ft. Today we will have the opportunity to see local shepherds and farmers working on the fields using traditional methods.

Day 2: Today is a demanding day. We ascend gradually for about 3 to 4 hours and then we make a steep ascend for one hour to the pass Punta Union at 4750m/15584ft. From the pass we have very close views of the big mountains of the Cordillera Blanca such as Nevado Taulliraju, Pucajirca, Rinrijirca, Artesonraju and many others and fantastic views down into the Santa Cruz Valley. 7 to 8 hours walk.

Day 3: Today we can make a side trip up to a view point in the Quebrada Arhuaycocha valley, from which there are great views of Nevado Alpamayo, Quitaraju and Artesonraju mountains. We then have a long descend along the Santa Cruz valley passing a big lake to our last campsite at Llamacorral 3750m/12303ft. 5 to 6 hours hike.

Day 4: We walk down Quebrada Santa Cruz Valley to the village of Cashapampa at 2900m/9514ft and then drive back to Huaraz. 3 hours walk and 3 hours drive.

For more information and prices contact us.   

The trek and the service provided exceeded my expectations. In particular I was very impressed with the attention given to my dietary needs. I really enjoyed the cheerful nature of the team and the insights into Peruvian life provided by Rodolfo.
Many thanks, Will recommend to everyone I know. Heather Mates Group, Australia