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3-Day Ausangate Challenge Trek

A demanding trek for adventure-seekers through the Ausangate mountain range.


Cusco, Peru


3 Days




Year Round

Tour type



3-Day Ausangate Challenge Trek Overview

Embark on the “3-Day Ausangate Trek,” a meticulously curated adventure that invites you to conquer the grandeur of the Andes and stand in awe before the majestic Rainbow Mountain. From the historic streets of Cusco to the remote trails of the Ausangate region, this trek is a testament to the power and beauty of nature, offering a blend of cultural immersion and awe-inspiring landscapes.

As you traverse ancient pathways and ascend to breathtaking altitudes, the “3-Day Ausangate Trek” provides an unfiltered connection with the natural world. Assisted by a team of local experts, from muleteers to chefs, your journey is seamless, allowing you to delve deeply into the serene environment. Encounter the daily rhythms of Andean communities, the gentle presence of alpacas and llamas, and the vibrant spectacle of the Rainbow Mountain. This trek is an invitation to touch the sky, a journey that weaves together the tapestry of Andean culture with the timeless splendor of one of Peru’s most iconic natural marvels.

Departure & Return Location Your Hotel in Cusco
Departure Time 4:00 AM
Estimated Return Time 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Guide Languages Available Guides fluent in English and Spanish
Key Attractions Ausangate Mountain, Rainbow Mountain, Red Valley, Yana Cocha, Comer Cocha, Puca Cocha, Apacheta pass

FromUSD 530
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  • Standard Large GroupGroup Size: 2 Min – 16ppl MaxStart Time: 04:00
  • Standard Small GroupGroup Size: 2 Min – 8ppl MaxStart Time: 04:00
  • Private GroupGroup Size: CustomizableStart Time: 04:00
  • Deluxe Private GroupGroup Size: CustomizableStart Time: 04:00
  • Solo TravelerGroup Size: 1 personStart Time: 04:00
  • Deluxe Solo TravelerGroup Size: 1 personStart Time: 04:00

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3-Day Ausangate Challenge Trek

Tour Itinerary

Explore our expertly designed itinerary below, crafted to showcase breathtaking views and provide unique adventures every step of the way.

Day 1: Cusco to the Foot of Ausangate

In the quiet of early morning, we set out from Cusco, embarking on a 3-hour drive to Pacchanta. As the city fades and the Andean wilderness emerges, the anticipation builds. Upon arrival in Pacchanta, a hearty breakfast awaits, providing energy for the day ahead. With the majestic Ausangate mountain as our backdrop, we begin our adventure.

As we set off, our trusty mules, managed by our experienced horseman, are loaded with all the necessary equipment. This ensures that you trek light, carrying only your daypack, while the mules transport the camping gear, food, and other essentials. Our skilled cook, meanwhile, goes ahead to ensure timely meals are prepared at our stops.

The day’s hike unfolds over approximately 6-7 hours, presenting ever-changing views of the grand Ausangate range. By late afternoon, we reach our campsite beside serene lagoons. Here, the tents are set up, and a sumptuous dinner is prepared. As dusk envelops the landscape, we gather around a campfire, with tales of Inca legends and the day’s journey filling the air. The stars above seem close enough to touch, as the sounds of nature lull us to sleep.

Accommodation: Camping
Meals: Lunch, Tea, and Dinner
Hiking: Approx. 6-7 hours, 11 km

As the soft hues of dawn stretch across the sky, we rise, eager to continue our journey. The day begins with a challenging yet rewarding climb to Apacheta Pass. Accompanied by our steadfast mules, who carry our gear, we ascend, feeling the freedom of the mountains with each breath of crisp air. At the summit, a panoramic feast for the eyes awaits, offering an unforgettable vista of the Ausangate range.

The descent towards Anantapata unveils a tapestry of Andean flora and fauna. Here, in the midst of such splendor, our cook has once again gone ahead to prepare a nourishing lunch, ready for our arrival. As the sun arcs lower, we settle into our campsite, where our horseman has ensured the mules are cared for, and our tents are pitched for a night under the stars. In the company of new friends and the silent mountains, we share a meal and stories, with the promise of another day’s adventure on the horizon.

Accommodation: Camping
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Tea, and Dinner
Hiking: Approx. 5 hours, 12 km

In the pre-dawn silence, we depart Ananta. Guided by the stars and the soft glow of our headlamps, we make the ascent towards Warmisaya Pass. The mules, ever-reliable, ensure our final hike is unencumbered. As we crest the pass, the first light of dawn reveals the Rainbow Mountain in the distance, its colors just beginning to awaken.

Our arrival at Vinicunca is timed to perfection, allowing us to experience this natural wonder in a tranquil exclusivity, before the rest of the world stirs. Here we pause, allowing the landscape to imprint itself upon us. As we descend, our horseman and mules take a different path, heading towards the rendezvous point where a final celebratory lunch awaits.

Our journey back to Cusco is filled with reflection and camaraderie. We bid farewell to our horseman and cook, whose efforts have been indispensable to the trek’s success. As Cusco’s lights come into view, signaling the end of our mountain adventure, we carry with us more than memories; we carry a profound connection to the Andes, fostered by the land, the people, and the creatures that accompanied us.

Accommodation: Not included (return to Cusco)
Meals: Breakfast and Lunch
Hiking: Approx. 5 hours, 7 km

Tour Highlights

3-Day Ausangate Challenge Trek Highlights

  • Early Bird Ascension: Beat the sun and the crowds with a pre-dawn start on the final day, ensuring a serene and solitary experience at Rainbow Mountain.
  • Breathtaking Panoramas: Witness the awe-inspiring 360-degree views of the Andean landscapes, including the towering Ausangate peak, from high mountain passes.
  • Cultural Immersion: Learn about the local Incan mythology and the significance of the Ausangate region within Andean cosmology as you trek through these sacred lands.
  • Flora and Fauna: Encounter a diverse array of Andean wildlife and plant life, including the chance to see South American camelids like alpacas and llamas in their natural habitat.
  • Guided Support: Travel with ease knowing that mules carry your equipment and an experienced horseman and cook accompany the journey, enhancing your trek with expertly prepared meals and well-managed campsites.
  • Starry Nights: Camp under the Andean night sky, a perfect canvas for stargazing, and enjoy the tranquility of the mountains with comfortable camping accommodations.
  • Photographer’s Dream: Capture the vibrant colors of the Rainbow Mountain and the stunning reflections in the mountain lagoons at sunrise and sunset.
  • Sustainable Travel: Engage in a trek that respects the environment and supports local communities, with a team that prioritizes eco-friendly practices and cultural respect.

Inclusions & Exclusions

Detailing Every Aspect of Your Travel Experience: What’s Included and What’s Not

Standard Inclusions

All package options include the following:

  • Bilingual English-speaking tour guide.
  • Pre-departure briefing at your hotel/office 1 or 2 days before the trek.
  • Hotel pick-up and transportation to the trailhead.
  • Return transportation from the trail’s end.
  • 4-person tent for every 2 people.
  • Inflatable mattress.
  • Kitchen tent, dining tent with tables and chairs.
  • Toilet tent.
  • Professional chef and assistant chef.
  • Daily morning boiled and cold water for water bottle refills.
  • Horses to carry all equipment (food, tents, chairs, table, etc.).
  • Horse to transport 7 kg of your personal gear.
  • Duffel bag for your personal gear.
  • 3 breakfasts, 3 lunches, and 2 dinners.
  • Vegetarian and gluten-free options at no extra cost.
  • Provision of snacks during the trek.
  • Emergency oxygen bottle and medical kit.
  • Entrance fees: Ausangate, Rainbow Mountain, and Red Valley.
  • All camping spot fees.


Not included in our standard tour packages. Consider additional costs. Deluxe packages may cover some exclusions, as specified in the Additional Inclusions section.

  • Sleeping bag (available for rent).Trekking poles (available for rent).Day 3 dinner.Tips for tour guides, chefs, and support staff are not included and are at your discretion.

Additional Inclusions

Deluxe Packages Only

Elevate your travel experience with our bespoke Deluxe Package, meticulously designed to offer an array of premium amenities and services.

Deluxe Packages Include:

  • Emergency Horse & Handler: An extra horse and a trained handler provide added safety on the trail.
  • North Face Four-Season Tents: State-of-the-art, weather-resistant tents for ultimate outdoor comfort.
  • Sleeping Bag: Sleep well with one premium sleeping bag per person.
  • Walking Sticks: 01 pair per person for added stability.
  • Private Transportation: Transportation exclusively for your group.
  • Personal Duffel Bag: Use a durable duffel bag to conveniently carry your personal gear, including the sleeping bag and self-inflating pads.
  • Dedicated Tour Guide: Get personalized insights and guidance from an expert tour guide throughout your journey.
  • Fair Compensation: We ensure fair compensation for all our dedicated team members.


Discover our diverse tour offerings, catering to various interests and providing unforgettable experiences for every traveler.

Standard Large Group

Group Size: 2 Min – 16ppl Max



Per Person

Join a diverse group of travelers for an economical shared experience.

All standard inclusions
No Additional Inclusions
No Private Service

Standard Small Group

Group Size: 2 Min – 8ppl Max



Per Person

Enjoy a more intimate setting, ideal for closer interactions and bonding.

All standard inclusions
No Additional Inclusions
No Private Service

Private Group

Group Size: Customizable



Per Person

Curate your journey with exclusivity tailored to your group’s preferences.

All standard inclusions
No Additional Inclusions
Private Service

Deluxe Private Group

Group Size: Customizable



Per Person

Indulge in luxury, enhancing every aspect of your tour for a memorable experience.

All standard inclusions
Additional Inclusions
Private Service

Solo Traveler

Group Size: 1 person



Per Person

Embrace the freedom of a solo adventure, with options to mingle or stay independent.

All standard inclusions
No Additional Inclusions
Private Service or Join a Group

Deluxe Solo Traveler

Group Size: 1 person



Per Person

Elevate your solo journey with added luxury and attentive service.

All standard inclusions
Additional Inclusions
Private Service

Special Discounts

  • Adult (12+ Years): Standard rates apply for travelers over 12 years old.
  • Child (3 – 11 Years): Save USD 30 for children between 3 and 11 years old.
  • Infant (0 – 2 Years): Infants younger than 2 years old are free (must ride on the adult’s lap; for a separate seat, add them as a child).
  • Group Discount: Automatically applied during online booking.
    • Save USD 10/person for groups of 5-7 people.
    • Save USD 15/person for groups of 8-10 people.
    • Save USD 20/person for groups of 11+ people.

*Please note that the applicable age is considered at the time of completion of the trip.

Payment Terms & Cancellation Policy

Kindly take a moment to read our Payment Terms & Cancellation Policy before booking. Happy adventuring!

Payment Terms

Beginning Your Adventure – Booking Confirmation and Deposit

Your journey starts with a commitment: a 30% deposit of the total tour cost. This initial investment is pivotal in activating the extensive preparatory process, ensuring every aspect of your tour is curated to perfection.

Final Payment: The Last Step Before Your Journey Begins

The remaining 70% of the tour cost is due no later than 48 hours before the commencement of your tour. This timely payment is critical to finalize all logistical arrangements, guaranteeing a hassle-free start to your adventure.

Expansive Payment Options for Ease and Flexibility

In line with our commitment to your convenience, Huaynas Expeditions accepts a variety of payment methods, including bank transfers, credit cards, and PayPal. Please be aware that additional fees may apply depending on the payment method selected. Detailed payment procedures and potential fees can be found on our dedicated payment page.

Implications of Late Payments – Protecting Your Reservation

Adherence to the payment schedule is crucial. Late payments can unfortunately lead to the cancellation of your reservation, with the deposit being retained as a non-refundable fee. We urge you to maintain timely payments to safeguard your tour plans.

Policy for Last-Minute Adventurers

For those inspired to join this tour on short notice, namely less than 15 days before departure, full payment is required at the time of booking. This ensures that we can expedite all necessary preparations for your inclusion.

Cancellation Policy

Flexible Cancellation Options for Clients

We understand that circumstances can change, sometimes unexpectedly. If you find the need to cancel your booking, you have the flexibility to do so up to 30 days before the tour start date. In this case, you will receive a full refund minus a 10% administration fee, acknowledging the efforts and resources already invested in planning your tour. Any additional balance paid will also be refunded, ensuring a fair and transparent process.

Understanding Cancellations Within 30 Days

We wish to draw your attention to our policy for cancellations made within 30 days of the tour departure. Given the advanced stage of preparations and commitments made at this juncture, we are unable to offer refunds. This policy is in place to balance the significant logistical arrangements and reservations made on your behalf.

Navigating Through Force Majeure

In the event of extraordinary and uncontrollable circumstances, such as natural disasters or significant political unrest, Huaynas Expeditions adopts a flexible approach. We prioritize your safety and satisfaction, offering to reschedule your trip or provide a credit for future travel, subject to availability.

Strong Advocacy for Comprehensive Travel Insurance

We cannot overstate the importance of securing comprehensive travel insurance. Such insurance plays a critical role in safeguarding your investment against unforeseen cancellations, emergencies, and other unexpected scenarios. It is a proactive measure to ensure peace of mind throughout your journey. Huaynas Expeditions is not responsible for any expenses arising from incidents not covered by your insurance policy.

Looking for the Perfect Tour?

If our standard tours don’t match your dream, let Huaynas Expeditions create one that does. Start planning your unique adventure now.

What to Pack

Your Essential Packing Guide for a Hassle-Free Adventure

Packing List

Prepare for an unforgettable journey with our essential packing guide. Here’s what you need to bring:

  • Original passport & student ID (if applicable).
  • Light day pack with clothes for varied temperatures.
  • Rain gear or poncho.
  • Waterproof trekking boots & extra socks.
  • Warm clothing, including jacket, fleece, gloves, scarf, beanie, and thermals for sleeping.
  • Sleeping bag.
  • Torch/flashlight & spare batteries.
  • Camera, film & batteries.
  • Sunblock & after-sun hydrating cream.
  • Insect repellent (20% DEET minimum, no malaria risk reported).
  • Toilet paper.
  • Snacks (biscuits, energy bars, chocolate, fruits, etc.).
  • Reusable canteen & water for the first morning.
  • Personal medical kit (special medications, paracetamol, blister treatment, etc.).
  • Small towel/sarong.
  • Cash for snacks, tips & souvenirs.
  • Earplugs for noise reduction during sleep or windy conditions.
  • Walking sticks/poles.


This list is a general guideline. Adjustments may be necessary based on personal preferences and the season of travel. Always check the weather forecast before your trip and feel free to reach out to us for any specific advice or requirements.

Provided Duffle Bag and Packing Tips

Pack Wisely with Our Essential Packing Tips

We’ll provide a returnable duffle bag during the pre-trek briefing, held 1-2 nights before your tour. Familiarize yourself with the bag, pack efficiently, and get essential trek details, safety guidelines, and updates. It’s a great chance to ask questions, meet fellow trekkers, and prepare for your adventure.

Our Packing Tips:

  • Adhere to the 7 kg weight limit: Keep the weight of your personal items in the duffle bag within the 7 kg limit to maintain a manageable load for the horses.
  • Place non-essential items in the duffle bag: Store items you won’t need during the day, like extra clothes, toiletries, and sleeping bags, in the duffle bag to lighten your day pack.
  • Label your duffle bag: Add a luggage tag or other identification to your duffle bag to prevent mix-ups with other trekkers’ bags.
  • Keep valuables in your day pack: Store passports, cameras, cash, and other valuable items in your day pack for added security and easy access.

Frequently Asked Questions

Got questions? We’ve got answers! Dive into our FAQ section for detailed responses to common queries. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, our team is just a click away to assist you.

Didn’t find what you’re looking for?

For more general questions about our tours, policies, and other inquiries, please visit our comprehensive FAQ page.

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Why Choose Huaynas Expeditions

Local Expertise

As a Cusco-based travel agency, our knowledgeable local guides and travel experts have an in-depth understanding of Peru's history, culture, and hidden gems, ensuring an authentic and immersive experience.

Experienced Team

Our dedicated team shares a deep love for Peru and its diverse offerings, ensuring you receive a memorable and uniquely crafted travel experience.

Personalized Itineraries

We understand that every traveler has unique interests and preferences. That's why we work closely with you to create customized itineraries tailored to suit your travel goals and desires.

Top Support

Our devoted team is available 24/7 to assist you with any questions or concerns you may have, ensuring a stress-free and enjoyable travel experience.

Safety and Reliability

Your safety and well-being are our top priorities. We adhere to strict safety protocols and maintain strong relationships with trusted local partners to provide you with the best possible experience.

Competitive Pricing

We strive to offer high-quality travel experiences at competitive prices, ensuring you receive excellent value for your investment.