International Mountain Guides Climbing and Mountaineering Expeditions

"Gran Traverse" Cordillera Blanca


Gran Traverse, Cordillera Blanca, Peru Climbing Expedition with International Mountain Guides

"Gran Traverse" Cordillera Blanca, Peru with International Mountain Guides

Join IMG this July for a spectacular trek and climbing traverse in the Cordillera Blanca. We'll attempt 4 moderately challenging peaks over 5,000 meters during the 14 day program: Maparju, 5326m, Huapi, 5415m, Ishinca, 5530m, and Nevado Urus, 5423m. Trekking off the beaten track and fun non-technical glacier climbing makes this "a trip of a lifetime" trekking and climbing adventure in one of the most stunning mountain ranges in the world.

A seven day addition is available for those with intermediate climbing skills wishing to attempt Chopicalqui, one of the highest peaks in the Cordillera Blanca at 6,345m (20,817 feet.)

Trip Highlights

  • A fourteen day trek and climbing expedition in the heart of the Cordillera Blanca. Climbing is non-technical, but our travels will take us off the beaten track and into a spectacular part of the Andes with multiple challenging ascents during our travels.
  • The chance to climb over 6,000 meters (20,817 feet) on the Chopicalqui extension.
  • Trip leaders include both an IMG veteran guide and a Peruvian IFMGA certified guide for the best possible experience and leadership.
  • Porters and mules will transport a large part of your gear during the trekking portion of our trip, to make the hike more enjoyable. A cook accompanies the trek.
  • Ample time to comfortably acclimatize to the higher altitude.
  • Private vehicle with driver for all transfers. Your leaders will meet you at the airport in Lima and transport you by private van/bus directly to Huaraz and back. Program leaders supervise every step of the journey for your travel security and comfort.


Excellent all around fitness and previous hiking/trekking experience, preferably at altitude. Basic mountaineering experience is recommended, but some training and skill review will be conducted during the trek as needed. Non climbers may attend the trek portion of the trip and skip the climbs if preferred. Please see more about fitness and experience requirements in our Peru Expedition FAQ »

Climbing in Peru with International Mountain Guides

Our expedition will be accompanied by a local veteran guide, knowledgeable of the geography, history and culture of the area. During the trekking portion of our program, we will use some local porters with mule backup to transport our gear and supplies. This permits us to enjoy the walk each day, as we move along unencumbered, free to take photos and investigate our surroundings. Meals will be served by our cook in a dining tent set up for your comfort during breakfast and dinner.

The mountains of northern Peru, including the Cordillera Blanca, include the most well known and spectacular peaks in all of the Andes. These mountains include 20 summits over 6,000 meters and a staggering list of peaks over 5,000 meters. High, stunning peaks piercing the sky with beautiful turquoise lakes and alpine meadows surrounding base camp; this is without a doubt one of the most beautiful mountain destinations in the world.

Our team will fly to Lima from Dallas or Miami via overnight flight, arriving in Lima in the early a.m. For help with travel arrangements, IMG recommends our travel agency, CTT Destinations: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need javascript enabled to view it or 800-909-6647. Owner Pirjo DeHart can help you to coordinate your travel plans with the IMG itinerary.

Your IMG guide will travel from the States with you to Lima. You'll be met by your local guide and driver and ushered onto a private van/bus at the airport. The 8 hour drive to Huaraz will allow time to get to know the rest of the team, talk about the upcoming program with your guides, and perhaps catch up on a little sleep.

Upon reaching Huaraz, you'll check into the hotel, get oriented in this hospitable and scenic town and enjoy your fist dinner in country. The guides will be full of useful information and will organize the group's activities over the next two days. Huaraz is located at 3100 meters in elevation, so this is a crucial time to start the acclimatization process. The first full day is limited to mild exertion only, touring town or perhaps visiting the ruins of Wilkawain nearby. On day two, the guides will take you on an acclimatization hike to Lake Churup for the day, a gain of 900 meters in elevation. Three nights in Huraz will give you plenty of time to start adjusting to altitude.

During the trek itself, you'll trek for 4-8 hours a day, depending on terrain and distance to be traveled. Most of your gear will be carried by mule or porter, and you will carry only necessary items for that day's travel on your back: water, snacks, camera, shell clothing and insulating layers. You'll be crossing passes of 4,000 meters in height, and generally camping at base camps up to that elevation. The scenery is spectacular, and the hiking terrain varies from good trail to cross country grass and scree slopes. The porters and mules travel in advance of the team, and camp is normally set up and waiting when you arrive.

Summit climb days on the trek will be alpine style, and will typically include a start up a climber's trail, followed by talus hiking and scrambling, followed by glacier travel to the summit. The summit of Urus will also involve some moderate rock scrambling and climbing. Each member normally carries a light pack for the day with necessary lunch and clothing only. The only exception to this rule will be the carry over the ridge of Ishinca on summit day. Porters will assist with member's loads (mules will not be able to make this stretch), and members will carry personal gear up to the summit ridge, cache it there for the summit push, then return to claim it and carry over to the next camp. This permits us to complete our mountain traverse, on to the final challenge Urus, and then out to the trail head.

Come join us on this one of a kind trekking, climbing and cultural adventure. It's an experience that will provide memories to last a lifetime!

Gran Traverse, Cordillera Blanca, Peru Climbing Expedition with International Mountain Guides
Dates and Prices

Cordillera Blanca "Gran Traverse"
July 8-23, 2012
Landcost: $3,850

Chopicalqui Extension
July 23-29, 2012
Landcost: $1,650

I left the mountain without a doubt that we chose and were with the best organization and people on the hill. I think most of the rest of base camp knew it too...
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.
The thing I like best about George's longer expeditions is how everyone comes together and becomes a tight knit team. It's like having a family away from home. George takes smaller groups, and I think that makes a big difference...
~Bruce G.
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