After 42 hours of travelling (yes you read that right – 42 hours!!!!!) we finally made it to Peru from Ecuador, to Huaraz. Huaraz had been recommended to us by a lot of people who had been to Peru as it had so many beautiful hikes around. One in particular was the hike to Laguna 69 – a lake at 4600m, which looked incredible.
We arranged a kind of tour through our hostel, which started by being picked up bright and early at 05:50am. On the way, we passed another lake a bit further down, which is honestly the bluest lake I have ever seen.
It’s so blue because of the minerals in the water.
After grabbing a few snaps it was on to the main event!
We were starting off around 3800m, so we had to do about 800m of climbing, and we were advised to take it easy because of the altitude. So we settled in for a nice, slow walk to the top. And there were some cute cows at the bottom.
You can just about see the ridge we were heading for in the next picture. This was about 15/20 minutes into the walk.
Even though it wasn’t very steep, the walk up was still pretty difficult because of the thin air. We had to walk a lot slower than we normally would, or you would very quickly get out of breath. It took us about 2 hours to get to the top (beating the 3 hours we were told it would take) and we finally glanced the blue laguna.
It was so beautiful and definitely worth the walk up.
We stopped at the top for some lunch and to wait for the rest of the group to make it. In which time we got to try out our new hats and gloves! It was really cold at the top, but one of the guys from our group actually jumped in and went swimming! No idea how he did it, as it was literally freezing!!… and then it started to rain.
After around an hour, we made our way down back to the bottom and headed back to the hostel.
Our main plan for Huaraz was to do the Santa Cruz trek – which was a four day trek through the mountains. In order for us to do this, we decided we needed to do a bit more acclimatizing than just Laguna 69, so we also tried out laguna Churup, which was similar distance, but a little steeper.
When we finally got there (we had some trouble with the local transport), we began our walk up to the top.
The path up looked really well kept, so was very easy to follow. Nice and cloudy of course.
The first half of the walk was relatively easy, and we felt like we were making good time. However, then it got a lot steeper. And when I say steep, I mean there were ropes to help pull yourself up! The second half of the walk, therefore, took a lot longer than the first, but we scrambled our way to the top to the laguna.
It definitely wasn’t as blue as laguna 69 but it was so clear, you could see everything in it.
And it had a really nice backdrop of snowy mountains.
While at the top, the weather began to look ominous, and we knew we had a bit of a scramble down, so we didn’t linger too long at the top. And to be honest our timing couldn’t have been more perfect, as pretty much as soon as we got back onto the bus, the heavens opened and it began to pour! But, after two days of acclimatizing, we were feeling set ready for our Santa Cruz hike!