Duration: 3 days – 2 nights
Walking distance: 40km
Rating: Moderately Difficult
Altitude: We will be hiking from 3100 m to 4400 m. In the second day we will get to the highest point and then descend back again.
Best time to visit: From June through September since are the driest months. Rain and fog are common at other times of the year.
Observations: This is a challenging and physically demanding trek, especially on the second day because of the high altitude. If raining, mud slogging and cold may add some extra difficulties to it. Even under the more ideal conditions water streams keep parts of the route muddy all year around. Weather in the sierra can change regardless of the season; so raining boots are a must. We will walk in the company of arrieros (mule drivers) and mules, which will carry the gear, equipment and food.
TREK DESCRIPTION: The Inca Trail to Ingapirca is a three-day hike on the Inca Royal Road that once linked Cuzco, the Inca capital, with Tomebamba (where Cuenca now stands) and Quito, which was used to move trade and messengers as well as large marching armies. The hike begins in the tiny village of Achupallas, which is an hour’s drive from the small railway town of Alausí, and ends at the Ingapirca (Inca Wall) ruins. The trail goes mainly thru wild, open páramo, passing through a couple of beautiful lagoons along the way reaching a maximum elevation of 4400 m, making it one of the highest points of the Royal Road in the entire Incan Empire.