The Santa Cruz Trek is one of the most popular treks in Peru and is a short trek that helps you acclimatize. After this trek, you may be able to complete other climbing or hiking challenges. The Santa Cruz Trek goes through the heart of the Cordillera Blanca and offers mountains, panoramic views, colorful lakes, and snowy peaks. This trek can be combined with connecting tours to southern Peru such as Inca Trail Trek to Machupicchu and other tours.
Day 1.- Huaraz - Cashapampa - Llamacorral We will leave Huaraz around 7 am from your hotel and drive along the Callejon de Huaylas passing several villages of Carhuaz, Yungay and Caraz. Then continue to the trail head Cashapampa 2900masl, where we will meet our donkey drivers. After to prepare and leave thing to packed. We will start hiking up by narrow and hot valley going up for about 2 hours. Then we will have lunch down the tree’s shadow After lunch we will start going up to almost flat area to the first camp place called Llamacorral. The walking time from the lunch area is 2 hours more so the total hiking time is about 4 hours on day 1. Overnight camping at Llamacorral 3760masl. Approximately 5km Day 2.- Llamacorral - Taullipampa After the Andean breakfast in our camp site we will have a moderate hike along the valley enjoying the beautiful lakes called Ichicocha and Jatuncocha turquoise lakes. We will arrive to a nice spot where will have lunch at the place called Quisuar. Then after it we will go up to the Alpamayo south base camp to take pictures. We will return after a short walk then continue for few hours to the next camp place called Taullipampa camping at 4200masl. Walking time approx 6 hours, about 8 to 9 km. Day 3.- Taullipampa – Huaripampa/Cachinapampa After the Breakfast in the Camp site taullipampa we will start our hiking around 7am. After 3 hours hiking up in the zig-zag path we will reach the Punta Union pass at 4750 masl, from here we will have spectacular views from the mountains such as Taulliraju, Paria, Artesonraju, and others and beautiful lake of Taullicocha then continue hiking down to Morococha lakes pass them and arrive to Cachinapampa Camp place. After 4 hours hiking down form Punta Union Pass, camping at 3850 masl walking time is approximately 8 or 9 hours, 12Km approx Day 4.- Huaripampa - Vaquería - Llanganuco Valley and return to Huaraz Last day breakfast in the camp site, we start hiking along the valley down to Huaripampa then turn to right side and climb a small part for about 40 minutes to get to Vaqueria. Here our minivan will be waiting for us to take us to Huaraz trough a road crossing the Portachuelo Llanganuco Pass (4,750m). The road leads up to the pass through quinoa forests and meadows before opening out as we approach the lakes. Another place to have your camera ready as the lovely Llanganuco Valley which comes into view. You will also see the east flank of Huascaran with both North and South peaks providing the backdrop to a vista that will include the Huandoy group (6,395m), Chopicalqui (6,354m) and the awe-inspiring Chacraraju (6,112m). we will descend down into the Llanganuco Valley.