Cordillera Huayhuash Circuit Trek

Panoramic view from Complete Huayhuash Circuit

Cordillera Huayhuash Circuit Trek

Prices

From $2,175USD

Difficulty

Guided

Camping

Active Travel is what we do

10Adventures knows Active and Adventure Travel because everything we do is focused on Active and Adventure Travel. We understand the needs of travellers and partner with excellent local guides who specialize in active, experiential and adventure travel.

Real humans are always a click or call away

Your time is important, and you shouldn't have to deal with automated bots or a confusing phone system. At 10Adventures you are assigned an Adventure Concierge, who is a real person who has one job: to support you during the planning & booking of your trip.

Customize or go private and get the perfect trip for you

Taking a holiday can be the most fun you have all year. At 10Adventures we believe that you should have the ability to personalize the trip, to get it just the way you want. Sometimes that's joining a group, but more often it's going private with your loved ones, and getting the dates and itinerary that's just right for you.

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Highlights

Experience hiking the classic Cordilerra Huayhuash Circuit on this unforgettable 14-day guided trek

Marvel at the views of the Cordillera Huayhuash from mountain passes and lookouts.

Hike up to base camp on the Siula Grande Glacier, famous from the book/movie “Touching the Void”

Camp on the shores of sparkling blue mountain lakes which reflect the grandeur of the peaks that surround you.

Experience the culture of the Peruvian Andes when you visit small villages along your trek.

Experience the majesty of the Cordillera Huayhuash mountain chain on the Huayhuash Circuit Trek- the 14-day guided adventure that will take you on the full classic journey in the Peruvian Andes. This route will be a private, fully-guided tour for your group, so you can make memories with your family and friends.

This route is the classic Huayhuash Circuit route, though the days are a bit shorter than other tours. This allows you more time to enjoy the scenery and explore the regions around the pretty campgrounds.

During the Cordillera Huayhuash Circuit Trek, you will make your way over breathtaking mountain passes, through lush valleys, across fields of Peruvian grass where llamas feed, and along the shores of crystal-clear mountain lakes. Each day brings you deeper into the Cordillera Huayhuash to experience this impressive region up close.

Along this guided Cordillera Huayhuash Circuit Trek, you will have the opportunity to enjoy hearty meals and camp in beautiful settings.

The 14-day tour starts and ends in Huaraz, Peru. Since most of this tour is above 4,000m in elevation, it is important to spend a few days prior to the Huayhuash Circuit trek getting acclimated to the altitude. A series of acclimatization hikes around Huaraz is strongly recommended.

If you are interested in the standard version of this tour, check out the standard Cordillera Huayhuash trek.

If you are interested in a short version of this tour, see our Short Huayhuash Tour.

How long is the Cordillera Huayhuash Circuit Trek?

While this version of the Cordillera Huayhuash Circuit Trek is a bit longer at 14 days, the route itself is approximately 120-130 kilometres (75-80 miles). This trek will take you through the rugged terrain of the Andes Mountains of Peru and will expose you to often unrelenting weather conditions, meaning it is not a trek for the faint of heart.

Will I be able to do the Cordillera Huayhuash Circuit Trek?

The question of if you will be able to do the Cordillera Huayhuash Circuit Trek is a bit of a personal one, as every person has a different level of physical fitness and limitations. Overall, this is a very challenging trek that traverses rugged terrain at high altitudes. Anyone looking to complete the Huayhuash Circuit Trek should have plenty of experience hiking/trekking in mountainous areas and should spend several days at high altitude prior to the start of the tour in order to acclimatize.

Cordillera Huayhuash Circuit Trek Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive in Huaraz

Arrive in Huaraz and check into your guesthouse. Enjoy exploring Huaraz on foot as you get used to the altitude. If you are coming from a lower elevation, it is strongly recommended to spend 2-3 days acclimatizing to the altitude, and you can book a 3-day acclimatization tour during the booking process, or you can plan your acclimatization before the trip on your own. The option acclimatization tour you can book takes you out to some of the most beautiful hikes around Huaraz. You can also arrange bus travel from Lima to Huaraz in the booking process.

Overnight Location
Guesthouse in Huaraz
Distance
None
Meals
None

Day 2 Transfer to Cuartelwain

A private van will pick you up in the hotel in Huaraz at 8:30 AM and take you to Cuartelwain (4,150 m / 13,615 ft). The drive takes about 5 hours plus a lunch stop along the way. At Cuartelwain, set camp and make dinner. Get a great night’s rest to prepare for the first hiking day!

Overnight Location
Camping at Cuartelwain (4,150m)
Distance
5 hours (in a van)
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3 Start the Huayhuash Circuit Trek and hike to Mitucocha via Qaqanan Pass

After breakfast, the trekking starts as you undertake the complete Huayhuash Circuit. Start with a 3-hour hike up to Qaganan Pass (4,700 m / 15,420 ft). Enjoy the view as you rest and eat lunch. From there, you will descend down the eastern side of Cordillera Huayhuash. After 2 more hours of hiking, you will reach the shores of Mitucocha Lake (4,250 m / 13,944 ft), where you will eat dinner and camp for the night beside the impressive Hirishanca and Rondoy mountains.

Overnight Location
Camping at Mitucocha Lake (4,250m)
Distance
5 hours, 550 m ascent / 450 m descent
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4 Trek to Carhuacocha via Carhuac Pass

This morning on the Huayhuash Circuit Trek begins with a climb up to the Carhuac Pass (4,650 m / 15,256 ft). The hike takes about 2.5 hours and promises beautiful views of the Yerupaja Chico, Yerupaja, and Siula mountains. It is a perfect place to rest and eat lunch. From here, another 2 hours of hiking brings you to the shores of Carhuacocha Lake (4,150 m / 13,615 ft). This stunning location is where you will camp and enjoy your dinner tonight.

Overnight Location
Camping at Carhuacocha Lake (4,150m)
Distance
4.5 hours, 400 m ascent / 500 m descent
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5 Trek up Siula Pass to Huayhuash Village

Get an early start today as you hike up to the Siula Pass (4,800 m / 15,748 ft). The trail begins along the shores of Carhuacocha Lake, where you have just spent the night, and passes three more lakes along the way: Qanrajancacocha, Siulacocha and Quesillococha. The hike to Siula Pass takes about 4 hours, with spectacular views of the Hirishanca chico, Yerupaja and Siula mountains visible the whole time. The Siula Pass offers a panoramic view of an array of snow-covered peaks, Siula Mountain in particular, and it is the perfect place to rest, eat lunch, and take photographs. The trail then continues down again for about 3 hours to a well-earned dinner and night of rest at the Huayhuash campsite (4,300 m / 14,108 ft).

Overnight Location
Camping at Huayhuash (4,300m)
Distance
7 hours, 650 m ascent / 500 m descent
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6 Trek to Lake Viconga via Portachuelo Pass

Today on your trek on the Huayhuash Circuit you will climb for about 2 hours up to the Portachuelo Pass (4,750 m / 15,584 ft). This pass forms the boundary between two different mountain chains, the Cordillera Huayhuash and the Cordillera Raura, and offers spectacular views of both chains. The trail then descends through fields of Peruvian feathergrass (jarava ichu), which only grows at elevations above 4,000m (13,123 ft) in the Andes mountains. You may even spot some llamas and alpacas that feed on these grasses. Continue hiking past beautiful Viconga Lake until reaching the campsite for the night, which is located near the hot springs (4,400 m / 14,436 ft). The hike from the Portachuelo Pass to the campsite takes about 2 hours.

Overnight Location
Camping at Viconga Lake (4,400m)
Distance
4 hours, 450 m ascent / 350 m descent
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7 Trek to Guanacpatay via Cuyoc Pass

Today’s Cordillera Huayhuash hiking takes you to new heights! Climb 600 m in about 3 hours, up to the Cuyoc Pass (5,000 m / 16,404 ft) between Cuyoc Mountain and Pumarinri Mountain. The highest pass on this tour, the Cuyoc Pass offers amazing views of Cordillera Raura, as well as a section of the Cordillera Huayhuash. The trail then leads back down into the Guanacpatay Valley (4,400 m / 14, 436 ft), and the hike to your campsite there from the Cuyoc Pass only takes about 1.5 hours.

Overnight Location
Camping at Guanacpatay (4,400m)
Distance
4.5 hours, 600 m ascent / 600 m descent
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8 Trek to Cutatambo via Mirador of San Antonio

After breakfast, a 2.5 hour hike brings you to the spectacular San Antonio Mirador (lookout) point (4,850 m / 15,912 ft). From this overlook, you will enjoy clear views of five different mountains - Carnicero, Jurao, Siula Grande and Yerupaja – as well as two mountain lakes – Jurao and Siulacocha. Rest here and take plenty of pictures before hiking another 2 hours down into the Cutatambo Valley (4,250 m / 13,944 ft) to camp for the night.

Overnight Location
Camping at Cutatambo (4,250m)
Distance
4.5 hours, 450 m ascent / 600 m descent
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9 Rest Day or Visit Siula Grande Glacier

After several days of demanding trekking on the Huayhuash Circuit, today you can either take a well-deserved rest day or go on a marvelous trek to the Siula Grande glacier base camp. This well-known mountain was the scene of the dramatic survival story of Joe Simpson, told in the book “Touching the Void,” and the film of the same name. The hike to Sarapococha Lake (4,550 m / 14,928 ft) and the glacier takes about 2.5 hours. Take time to walk around the lake and take pictures of the glacier before returning to the Cutatambo campsite by the same trail.

Overnight Location
Camping at Cutatambo (4,250m)
Distance
5 hours, 300 m ascent / 300 m descent
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 10 Trek to Huayllapa

Today, the Huayhuash Circuit trail descends along the Huayllapa River through a beautiful valley filled with native trees and shrubs. After hiking for about 3.5 hours, you’ll reach the Huayllapa Village (3,600 m / 11,811 ft) where you can treat yourself to soft drinks or beer before camping nearby for the night.

Overnight Location
Camping at Huayllapa (3,600m)
Distance
3.5 hours, 650 m descent
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11 Trek to Qashpapampa via Tapush Pass

Leave the valley today and hike back up into the mountains to the Tapush Pass (4,850 m / 15,912 ft). The hike from Huayllapa Village to the Tapush Pass takes about 3.5 hours of steep climbing, but your efforts will be rewarded with views of the Cordillera Blanca and Tuco Mountain. Stop to rest and enjoy the view before hiking down for about 2 hours to reach Qashpapampa (4,500 m / 14,764 ft). This area is often used as a base camp for climbing the Diablo Mudo Mountain.

Overnight Location
Camping at Qashpapampa (4,500m)
Distance
5.5 hours, 1,250 m ascent / 350 m descent
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 12 Trek to Jahuacocha via Yahucha Pass

Have your camera ready for a day full of breathtaking vistas on the Huayhuash Circuit! After breakfast, a 2.5 hour hike will bring you to the Yahucha Pass (4,750 m / 15,584 ft), which offers spectacular views of Cordillera Huayhuash’s western side. You can clearly see at least 6 different snow-capped peaks, including Ninashanca, Hirishanca, Yerupaja Chico, Yerupaja, and Rasac. Yerupaja (6,634 m / 21,765 ft) is the second-highest peak in Peru after Huascaran (6,768 m / 22,205 ft). Rest and take plenty of pictures while at the Yahucha Pass. Continue hiking about 2.5 hours through the Huacrish Valley until you reach Jahuacocha Lake (4,070 m / 13,353 ft). Enjoy your dinner and a good night’s rest here on the shores of Jahuacocha Lake against a stunning mountain backdrop.

Overnight Location
Camping at Jahuacocha Lake (4,070m)
Distance
5 hours, 250 m ascent / 680 m descent
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 13 Trek to Llamac via Pampa Llamac Pass and then transfer to Huaraz

On the final day of this circuit tour, hike for 3 hours up to Pampa Llamac Pass (4,300 m / 14,108 ft). From this lookout, get one last, up-close view of the Cordillera Huayhuash mountain chain. After pausing to rest, hike down for about 2 hours to Llamac Village (3,300 m / 10,827 ft). In Llamac Village, you will meet up with a car waiting to take you back to Huaraz City and your hotel.

Overnight Location
Huaraz
Distance
5 hours, 230 m ascent / 1,000 m descent
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch

Day 14 Departure

Today you’ll depart Huaraz. Many guests take a bus back to Lima, though some stay on to complete another trek in the Huayhuash.

Overnight location
None
Distance
None
Meals
Breakfast

Cordillera Huayhuash Circuit Trek Price & Dates

The guided Huayhuash Circuit is always run as a custom tour for you and your group. Please contact us with your preferred starting date and group size so we can help you make incredible memories on this private group tour. This route can also be altered depending on your group's capabilities.
The prices below are per person, sharing a double or a triple room:

  • Guided solo traveller: $4,625USD
  • Guided groups of 2: $2,595USD per person
  • Guided groups of 3: $2,275USD per person
  • Guided groups of 4-7: $2,125USD per person
  • Guided groups of 8+: on request
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Huayhuash Circuit Accommodation

You will be staying in a hotel in Huaraz at the start and end of this tour. In between, you will be pitching camp at various scenic spots along the Huayhuash Circuit Trek. These campsites are owned by the rural communities in the Cordillera Huayhuash and provide revenue for these local communities. Camping allows you to enjoy the natural surroundings around you, as well as enjoy staying on the trail itself along the way.

Single Rooms and Solo Travelers
You can pay a $125USD supplement to have a private room in a hotel. In some cases we can also get triple rooms for groups.

Hotel El Tumi

This clean, comfortable hotel is just a quick, 3-block walk from the main square in Huaraz. Spa services and a sauna are available, which might be of interest after 12 days on the trail!

Night 2-12

Camping in Cordillera Huayhuash

You will be pitching camp at scenic spots along the Alpamayo Trek. Your campsites are owned by the rural communities in the Cordillera Blanca, and your staying there provides valuable revenue.

Hotel El Tumi

This clean, comfortable hotel is just a quick, 3-block walk from the main square in Huaraz. Spa services and a sauna are available, which might be of interest after 12 days on the trail!

Hotels on Standard Tour

What’s Included in the Huayhuash Circuit Trek?

Meals

13 breakfasts, 12 lunches, 11 dinners

Accommodations

Accommodations along the Huayhuash Circuit Trekking tour are included, as are accommodations in Huaraz before and after the trekking tour.

Transportation during the Huayhuash Circuit tour

This tour includes transportation at the beginning and end of the trek to and from Huaraz. You can also arrange transport from Lima to Huarez during the booking process.

Also Included

  • English-speaking guide throughout the trip
  • Hotel taxes and service charges in Huaraz
  • Camp cook
  • Horseman, pack animals, and emergency horse
  • Camping equipment for collective use (sleeping tents, kitchen tent, dinning tent, bathroom tent, mattress, table and chairs)
  • Kitchen Service (all the crockery)
  • Park fee entrances
  • First Aid Kit
  • Luggage porterage using donkeys and/or horses
  • All logistics

Not included

  • Anything not listed as included
  • Flights to Peru
  • Transit to Huarez
  • Personal trekking gear
  • Any food or beverages not listed
  • Personal clothing and equipment
  • Incidental personal expenditures, including any travel insurance, emergency evacuations and medical expenditures
  • Travel, personal, and medical insurance

Optional Extras

  • Bus Transfer from Lima: $25USD per Person
  • Additional night in Huarez: $95USD per double room
  • 3 day, 2 Night Pre-trip Acclimatization guided hikes and accommodation in Huarez: $425USD per person

Frequenty Asked Questions about Cordillera Huayhuash Circuit Trek

How hard is the Huayhuash Circuit tour?

This tour is rated as a 5 out of 5 for difficulty, largely due to the altitude of the Huayhuash Circuit. Acclimatization to the altitude prior to the start of the tour is recommended.

Do I need a Visa?

Every country is different. It’s important to check with your country to see if they require a visa. You could also try this website, though it’s important that you verify with your government.

Are meals included?

The tour includes 13 breakfasts, 12 lunches, and 11 dinners.

Do I need insurance?

In order to participate in this tour, it is mandatory that you have Health and Medical travel insurance. You can get travel insurance here.

How do I get to Huaraz to start this tour?

Most guests fly into Lima and then take a bus to Huaraz. You can add on the bus trip to Huarez from Lima during the booking process.

Where does the tour end?

The trek ends in Llamac Village, where you’ll get a transfer back to Huarez. You can book a bus back to Lima during the booking process.

Are the tours in English?

Yes, the tour guide is English speaking.

Can I rent any gear?

There shouldn’t be any need to rent gear for this tour.

Do I need vaccines?

Check with your family doctor or a Travel Medical Clinic to confirm required immunizations or vaccines.

What kind of tents do you use?

The tents used are 3 season, 3-person tents, however tents are only shared for 2-participants. The specific tent used is typically the Doite Cara Kailas.

Can I bring my own tent?

Yes you can bring your own tent, however you won’t save any money.

Should I tip a guide on the Huayhuash Circuit tour?

Yes, tips are optional and based on good service.

What gear should I bring for the Huayhuash Circuit trek?

Please try to travel as light as possible. Although you do not need to carry your luggage while walking, you will still need to carry it over short distances. Also, remember you unpack and repack on most nights.

  • 1 backpack with a capacity of 60 to 70 L (or a similarly sized duffel bag or travel bag)
  • 1 daypack
  • Sleeping bag (should be lightweight, rated to 0 degrees F., down or synthetic, and compressible)
  • 1 warm jacket or parka
  • 3 pairs of outdoor pants (jeans are not recommended as they are slow to dry)
  • Warm sweaters
  • Hiking socks (with optional liner socks) for walking
  • T-shirts, shirts, hats or caps
  • 1 set of long underwear
  • Quality hiking boots that are broken in.
  • Spare shoes for the evenings (optional)
  • 1 set of light rain gear such as a pant and jacket combination or a good poncho
  • Your own personal water bottle (at least 1 liter, preferably two bottles).
  • 1 pocketknife or hunting knife
  • 1 pair of sunglasses (VERY IMPORTANT!)
  • A supply of sun blocker or sunscreen lotion and lip protection (VERY IMPORTANT!)
  • Personal medications
  • Underwear, personal items, and toiletries
  • 1 pair of fleece lipants
  • 1 wool or fleece hat
  • Headlamp and Batteries (bring at least 2 spare sets)
  • 1 pair of gloves (wool or shell gore-tex)

When is the best time to travel to this region of Peru for trekking?

The recommended months to travel to Huaraz are from May to September. This period is cold but dry. You should avoid travelling to this region for trekking during the rainy season as the snow makes some of the high passes impassable.

Go2Andes is a family-operated tour operator whose owners were raised in a small Peruvian village called Llamac, located in the iconic Cordillera Huayhuash in the Andes.

Nearly all of Go2Andes’ guides are from the villages of the Cordillera Blanca and the Cordillera Huayhuash, and they use this deep familiarity to their advantage.

Go2Andes has led clients from over 30 different countries and they aim to become friends with each client before returning them home.

Learn More

Prices

From $2,175USD

Difficulty

Guided

Camping

Active Travel is what we do

10Adventures knows Active and Adventure Travel because everything we do is focused on Active and Adventure Travel. We understand the needs of travellers and partner with excellent local guides who specialize in active, experiential and adventure travel.

Real humans are always a click or call away

Your time is important, and you shouldn't have to deal with automated bots or a confusing phone system. At 10Adventures you are assigned an Adventure Concierge, who is a real person who has one job: to support you during the planning & booking of your trip.

Customize or go private and get the perfect trip for you

Taking a holiday can be the most fun you have all year. At 10Adventures we believe that you should have the ability to personalize the trip, to get it just the way you want. Sometimes that's joining a group, but more often it's going private with your loved ones, and getting the dates and itinerary that's just right for you.

Rated 4.9 on Google Reviews
Start Your Booking

What travellers say

When can I do this tour?

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Is this tour for me?

This Huayhuash Circuit tour is rated as a 5 out of 5 for difficulty, largely due to the altitude of the Huayhuash Circuit. Acclimatization to the altitude prior to the start of the tour is recommended.

Local guide

Christian

Huaraz, Peru

Get in touch

+1 (587) 327-9828

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