Sacred Valley and Lares Trek 2017: Day One

Hi Folks,

We just wrapped up our first official day of the Sacred Valley + Lares Adventure and we are currently communing with llamas WHILE in a jacuzzi. If you don’t believe me, scroll down to the bottom of this post!

We left Cusco not so early this morning and headed into the Sacred Valley. As you can see from the photo, it was gorgeous! Even Gordon was impressed.

We winded our way up through the hills to the small community of Amaru (13,150′) and picked up a couple of burros and the most adorable burro whisperer- Nadia. We hiked up and over Challwacasa Pass (14,200′) and down to the community of Viacha.

Nadia and the burros.

Up close and personal with the burros. Yes, I wanted to burro-nap them.

The terrain we crossed was beautiful.

When we were almost to Viacha, we came across a herd of sheep with a couple of rouge alpaca in the midst. Yes, there were many little lambs and they were adorable.

When we stopped for lunch, there was a display of local Peruvian crops for us to investigate. Peru provides half the world’s supply of quinoa and several types were present along with a medley of beans, corn, and a ridiculous variety of potatoes.

Gordon’s found a new friend. Anyone wearing a Yankee’s cap is a good egg in his book.

During lunch we feasted on a traditional Peruvian meal cooked under hot stones called Pachamancha.

There were potatoes galore, giant corn, succulent meats, delicious salads, mushroom ceviche (!!!) and…cuy (guinea pig). The g-pig was…pretty okay. To soothe our mountain air patched lips, there was warm purple corn drink favored with cinnamon and cloves. Yum!

After we were way too full to be hiking, we headed down to the archaeological site of Pisaq; an ancient Incan citadel.

After touring the ruins, we headed to the beautiful Lamay Lodge. From the jacuzzi, you can gaze out into the verdant hills of the Sacred Valley and…make eyes at llama.

All in all, it was a fantastic start to the Sacred Valley and Lares adventure!

-Mary

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