International Mountain Guides Climbing and Mountaineering Expeditions

"Gran Traverse" Cordillera Blanca


Gran Traverse, Cordillera Blanca, Peru with International Mountain Guides

IMG Cordillera Blanca, Peru Itinerary

Day Itinerary
Day 1Leave USA late and arrive in Lima early Day 2 (0600hrs) (IMG's preference) [OR] depart USA early and arrive late Day 1 (2200hrs) in Lima and overnight in hotel (at additional expense). Please coordinate with IMG prior to booking your flight. Our staff will meet you upon arrival.
Day 2Depart Lima early, private van/bus ride with driver to Huaraz. A full day's drive, about 7-8 hours. Overnight and dinner in Hotel Andino.
Day 3Today we'll hike from the hotel, through the highlands and villages above Huaraz. This is a critical acclimatization day for many people, before we leave for the mountains. It'll establish a healthy acclimatization period for the entire group. Afternoon will be spent resting, and organizing personal gear. Dinner in town.
Day 4Up early for an all day acclimatization hike to Lake Churup, 4600m., a 900m training hike that will take 8 hours round trip from Huaraz. Return to hotel in the afternoon. Dinner in town. In the early evening, the group will make final preparations for the trek and leaders will do a group gear check and briefing.
Day 5Drive from Huaraz to the trailhead (3800m). A hike of 4-5 hours up valley brings us to a meadow camp with spectacular views at 4200m.
Day 6An acclimatization day. We'll hike up to the glacier for some light exercise, and enjoy the views, and make our plan for the summit ascent.
Day 7Up EARLY today for our first ascent of Maparju, 5326m. A hiking path brings us up to the col (Abra Villon) at 5000m. Straight forward roped glacier travel leads us to the summit. Return to same camp after climb.
Day 8Leisurely wake up after the previous day's efforts. After breakfast, we hike to our next destination, Laguna Palccocha, base camp for our next objective.
Day 9Summit day for our second peak of the trip: Huapi, 5415m. We climb up steep grass and scree to the glaciated SW ridge. We follow the ridge on snow to the summit with spectacular views. Return to camp.
Day 10Trek to Laguna Perolcocha and camp at the lake.
Day 11Climb Ishinca (5530m.), and then descend to Ishinca Valley. By doing this, we completely traverse over into another valley…making the trip a fantastic "gran traverse." All gear will be carried up on summit morning and then left at the col on Ishinca, so it won't have to be carried to the summit. Porters will assist with carrying gear up and over.
Day 12Optional weather/rest day. Could be used before Ishinca, or before Urus.
Day 13Climb Nevado Urus, 5423m., from our Ishinca Valley base camp. Return to base camp. If possible, we will try to descend this day to Huaraz, which will give everyone a full rest day there, relaxing before our trip home. If we are able to do this, those climbing Chopi will leave for the mountain one day earlier, which will also provide a little cushion time at the end of the trip in a similar fashion. We'll make this decision based upon the ability of the group, weather, and other factors.
Day 14Hike out to trailhead to our waiting transportation and return to Huaraz. Sort gear, clean up and relax. Free day in Huaraz. In the evening we will be treated to a traditional Peruvian dinner and dancing. Dinner will be the typical Pachamancha dinner fiesta complete with Maximo's extended family, music, and fun! It's a special event with lots of food, drink and a band. You'll enjoy the experience as a way to end our trip for some, and recharge for the next part of the trip!
Day 15

For those leaving Peru this day: Morning shopping; leave mid-morning for Lima. Depart Lima late this day.

For those staying on for Chopicalqui (6345m): we'll take this as a reorganization and rest day. Take it easy!

Day 16

For those who left for the USA the day before: Arrive mid-day at home after a great trip to Peru!

For those climbing "Chopi": Drive to trailhead, about 1 hour from Huaraz. Organize gear, and then carry full packs for 1-2 hours to Chopi Basecamp, at 4,200 meters. Like our Gran Traverse, we'll have porter assistance, which will help make our loads more manageable.

Day 17We'll leave by 8 AM, and make our way through brush and meadows, to a small ridge. Camp (Moraine Camp) will be placed on a moraine, around 4,800 m, after our 5-6 hour effort.
Day 18Our climb to Camp I will first take us along a moraine to the glacier, and we'll then rope up and walk up the glacier, which is up to 45 degrees in some places. It's a reasonable 5-6 hour ascent and a good warm-up for the next day. Camp will be made just before the start of the summit ridge. Prepare for the summit day, and get to bed early.
Day 19We'll get up well before midnight, and leave by 12:30 or so in the cold. Our route will first take us to the summit ridge, and then along it for 7-9 hours. The slopes vary in steepness, and weaves around crevasses on the ridge. The summit is usually guarded by a large bergshrund, or a crevasse, and once we negotiate that, a 60 degree steep pitch leads us to the summit. It's possible we may fix a rope to the summit, to assist with the ascent and descent, which is usually made by a rappel. We'll spend no more than an hour on the summit, resting and taking hero shots and pictures of the area. Our descent back to Camp I will take us about half our uptime, or around 3-5 hours. It'll be our longest day yet, probably around 14-18 hours. Descend lower if possible. Eat a quick dinner, and drop into bed!
Day 20We'll get up early this day, descend from Camp I to our moraine camp, and then onward to Chopicalqui base camp, and then the trailhead. We'll bus back to Huaraz, for some well deserved showers, an end of trip meal, and a real bed in our hotel!
Day 21Leave around 8-9 AM for Lima, and depart Lima late. A long day of travel, so be prepared with snacks et al. It's an "overnight flight," so plan to sleep on the flight if you can.
Day 22Flights arrive in Miami/Dallas about 5 AM, which leaves plenty of time to make connections for flight home. Arrive home by mid-afternoon. Crash hard and rest. Reacquaint yourself with friends and family. Celebrate life!
Gran Traverse, Cordillera Blanca, Peru Climbing Expedition with International Mountain Guides
I want to inform you that I really was a bit surprised, that all the logistics and work on the mountain was as perfect as clock work. I thought that with so many people and so much stuff there could be also a small mistake or something, but nothing... all worked really perfect.
I was very impressed with how everything was so well organized. It seemed like every little detail was covered. IMG is way better than the others. Way better! You guys are the best in the business...
~Jim P.
I want to take a few minutes to write you and let you know that you have one happy customer!!! I've already started spreading the IMG word to folks who have dreamed of doing this. Hearing me talk about it they can see how easy it is: just a phone call away, and it's taken care of, all you have to do is show up — literally.
~Dolly K.
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