General Trek & Climb Information
When to Go
The Peruvian Andes are subject to conflicting weather influences coming both from the Pacific Ocean and from the jungle and traditionally there is a “dry” and “rainy” season.
Generally the months with more settled weather are May until mid September with shoulder periods in mid April & late September.
However world climatic changes are also affecting weather patterns in Peru and the separation between a wet season and dry season is now not so clear. In recent years there have been long dry spells during the so called wet months October to April while there have also been periods of cloud and rain during what were traditionally the driest months of June, July & August.
While the better weather is still from May to September, these can no longer be considered “dry” months and periods of cloudy weather or rain may be expected at any time.
For 5000m & non technical peaks, the better time for climbing is May to September. These peaks can be climbed October to April, but are more subject to bad weather & deep soft snow during these months.
6000m peaks and technical peaks can generally only be climbed from June to August, with the most technical peaks often not in safe condition until the beginning of July
We also organise treks from October until April and special low season rates apply.
*Private groups welcome (any size from one client upwards)
*Single tents available on request (a small extra charge may apply)
*Day tours and day hikes for groups of any size.
If you are travelling alone and would like company on your trek or climb, we can advertise your dates on our website JOIN A GROUP PAGE and co-ordinate to form a group with other people. For groups formed by our Join A Group Service we normally have a maximum number of 6 to 8 people.
Acclimatisation & Altitude
All trekking in the Huaraz area is demanding on the body because you are the whole time above 4000m and you go up to high altitudes quickly after you depart from Huaraz. It is important to be well acclimatised to avoid possible altitude related illness.
Altitude symptoms vary but can include headache, nausea or vomiting, breathlessness, lack of appetite, stomach problems, extreme lethargy and lack of energy, inability to sleep from mild to severe in extent. In extreme cases pulmonary or cerebral or edema are possible.
We do recommend that you arrive in Huaraz at least 2 full days before the trek departs to help you become acclimatised to the altitude. It is advisable to have two full days in Huaraz to recover from your travel and do day hikes to higher altitude to help with acclimatisation before departing for the trek. We can organise day hikes for you.
Acclimatisation for Climbing:
It is important that you are well acclimatised to the altitude before attempting to climb any peaks in the Cordillera Blanca to avoid possible problems with lack of energy or altitude related illnesses when climbing. Climbing above 5000m is physically demanding, even if the climbing is not steep or technical.
We always recommend a trek of minimum 4 to 6 days for acclimatisation and extra fitness to ensure that you are well acclimatised and therefore can enjoy your climbing and have maximum opportunity to achieve your goals. If you are climbing a 6000m peak or a technical peak, we recommend as well as a short trek that you make a preparation climb of a 5000m peak 2 to 4 days for extra acclimatisation & strength
Most of our programs start and finish in Huaraz. Add extra days for international flights, travel between Lima and Huaraz and acclimatisation days in Huaraz. Our program descriptions on the web are a brief summary only and only detail some of the treks and climbs that we offer.
We are flexible and can " Tailor " make a trip to suit your specific requests or plans.
Contact Us for more information & prices
Travel Lima : Huaraz
Huaraz is 400km to the north of Lima, some 8 hours journey by road or one hour flight.
There is a tourist class bus service, with both day bus and night bus service. VIP seats are available which are large, fully reclining, a lot of leg room and comfortable for the long road journey. The service is non stop, a light meal is served and there is an on board toilet.
Tourist class bus services are operated by Cruz Del Sur, Oltursa & Movil Tours.
There is a limited flight service operated by LC Peru with just one return flight per day between Lima & Huaraz
General Peru Trek & Climb Information
On trek donkeys carry your main luggage, tents, food and camping equipment. You only carry a light day pack with rain jacket, drink bottle, snack, camera etc. Donkeys also carry equipment to base camp on most of the climbing trips.
We request that you try to keep the weight of your trek bag to be carried by a donkey to maximum 12kgs per person.
We only use reputable & licensed donkey drivers (arrieros) who ensure that donkeys are in good condition and are well cared for. Donkeys carry a maximum allowable weight of 40kgs.
Corina / USA / Alpamayo Base Camp Trek: I could not have been happier with our support team on the trail . Arrieros Victor & Javier were there to help in every way possible, they waded through ice cold rivers in sandals to allow us to cross on horseback. They were kind & caring with the donkeys, lovely to watch for an animal lover.
The arrieros arrive in the camp early in the afternoon and set up the campsite, pitch clients tents and have water boiling ready for a welcome afternoon tea when you arrive in camp mid afternoon. The arrieros also take down all the tents and pack up camp in the mornings
Arrieros - Laguna Jahuacocha Cordillera Huayhuash
On climbing trips where there are high camps on the mountain porters carry most of the equipment, tents and food, and you carry just your own personal gear, sleeping bag, mattress etc. Maximum allowable weight per porter is 15 kgs. We can arrange hire of a personal porter if you do not wish to carry your own equipment up to mountain camps.
All drinking water is boiled on full boil for 2 minutes which is sufficient to kill all organisms and great care is taken with food packaging, preparation & hygiene to minimise risk of illness. Staff are fully trained in safe food handling practises.
We only use gas for cooking, no fires, remove all our rubbish and waste, use a toilet tent and bury toilet waste. On climbing expeditions poo tubes are utilized in high mountain camps to remove toilet waste.
Mountaineering – Poo Tubes
Our guides are trained in mountain first aid and carry a first aid kit.
We operate treks & climbs with a high staff to client ratio to ensure top quality service and also to enable us to safely evacuate any injured or ill client back to Huaraz with one of our staff in the shortest possible time, without affecting the trekking or climbing enjoyment of the other clients in the group.
We have a company Evacuation Procedure which guides carry with them, detailing the procedure to handle emergencies or evacuations from various locations on each trek or climb. We have good support staff at our base in Huaraz with 24 hour emergency contact numbers and help available.
There is no helicopter rescue available in the Huaraz area.
PAA Client Evacuation from Ishinca 2012:
– broken leg following a slip descending a trail
Initial carry down to base camp Rescue Stretcher for carry down valley to road
From Susan: Just a note to let you know that we have all arrived safely at home. We will be providing a detailed testimonial about your wonderful trekking and climbing business once we have recovered from our travels. Thank you very much for all of your kindness and help with my injury. Your evacuation process was very impressive, as was your ability to get me directly to the correct doctor once back in Huaraz. I will be having the surgery on Monday afternoon and look forward to a fairly speedy recovery.
All the best, Susan
We recommend clients obtain appropriate travel insurance for trekking or mountaineering.
The policy should cover activities of trekking and/or mountaineering and include medical, rescue, evacuation and repatriation expenses, loss of personal items or money, costs associated with cancellation of any part of the trip, flight cancellation or other disruption to travel.
In the event of an accident, injury or illness we will organise rescue and repatriation to Huaraz in the safest and quickest manner possible. All expenses will be the responsibility of the client, including transport, mountain rescue personnel, hospital and medical treatment, repatriation, additional hotel costs. Such expenses may be recoverable under your insurance policy.
Important Note: Peru Police will NOT initiate any mountain rescue until they have received either payment by cash in advance or guarantee of payment to cover the costs of rescue.
It is important that you have insurance to cover rescue & that details of your policy are provided to Peruvian Andes Adventures office with your booking information.