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Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu

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Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu

The tallest mountain in the cordillera Vilcabamba at 6,271meters/20,569 feet and the second highest in the Cusco area. There are several ways of doing this, I will explain the most popular. It is more of a nature trek than a way to see ancient ruins. You pass high mountains and sweltering jungle, all in very desolate areas. you own, without an agency or even a guide. The trek generally starts in the town of Mollepata in the Apurimac Valley to the northwest of Cusco. It is reachable by an early morning bus. The first night on this trek is cold, as cold a night as I have ever experienced. The camp is beside the snow-covered peak of Salkantay.

Day two is straight up for about half a day. There is usually a great variance in times to complete this part of the trek. Those with greater physical strength and determination may finish hours ahead of the rest of the group. this day alone makes it more difficult than the regular trail, but do not let that stop you. I watched a group of four shape Germans in their 60s make it. They trudged along slowly and by no means embarrassed themselves.

From this point on, there are several variations for the trek. Some take four nights overall, some just three. Others take seven. Some will end in the town of Santa Teresa, a short walk from the train station at the Aobamba hydroelectric plant. It's a one-hour ride from there to Aguas Calientes. Another trek leads to Paucarcancha, Huayallabamaba, and then connects with the traditional Inca Trail.

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