Peru 4: Rainbow Mountains Arco Iris

A visit to the Arco Iris mountain is a new destination from Cusco and not yet listed in most travel guides -but well worth making the effort.

Leider kam die Zeit des Abschieds von Uwe und Almut. Wir hatten eine schöne Zeit zusammen bis Cusco -aber die Zeit drängte und sie mussten wieder zurück bis Montevideo und dann nach Kapstadt. Wir reisten weiter und die Regenbogen Berge waren das nächste Ziel.

On 9th July Uwe and Almut Harms started their return journey to Montevideo whereas we drove to the Rainbow Mountains with Bernd and Marion Frauendorfer from Hamburg,whom we had met in Cusco at Quinta Lala.

This sight is not very well documented but has become very popular. Turn off at Pitumarca to get there. There is no camping site and touring busses leave Cusco very early to arrive at the trails starting point at sunrise. If you travel with your own 4×4 transport it is possibly to wild camp up at 4280m and then leave next morning to hike the 6km up to 4800m to see this spectacular mountain Cerro Colorado.

The camping spot is below Ausangate with its glacier 6384m visible from camping spot at the coordinates S13.52.378 W071.14.515.

Be well prepared as the temperatures reach -5degrees or lower during the night.

The trek is strenuous due to the altitude and the low temperatures in the morning but a very scenic hike. Some decide to go on horseback, but beware of altitude sickness if you are not already well adapted, as the horseride covers the change in altitude too quickly for some recently arrived tourists.

We were elated to finally stand on top of this colourful formation.

Author: Dieter

A passionate traveller and photographer with an urge to share the beauty of our planet.

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