Cordillera Huayhash Overview
Stretching for 30 kilometres (19 miles) from north to south and boasting six of Peru’s 37 6,000-metre (19,700-foot) high peaks, the Cordillera Huayhuash is a popular destination for trekkers and mountaineers heading to the western South American country.
Located about 150 kilometres (93 miles) northeast of the national capital of Lima, the entire mountain range sits within the Cordillera Huayhuash Protected Zone. Unlike the neighbouring Cordillera Blanca, the Cordillera Huayhuash is far more remote and has a much higher average elevation.
Famous Climbs and Treks in the Cordillera Huayhuash
The Cordillera Huayhuash is home to a number of popular treks and climbing opportunities. However, the most popular of these is easily the Huayhuash Circuit, which takes about a week to week-and-a-half to complete.
The majority of the trekking takes place at 4,000 metres (13,100 feet) or more and involves plenty of climbing up steep mountain passes and descending into narrow valleys. The trek is considered far more challenging than the popular Inca Trek, but also provides incredible views and is far less crowded, even during the high season.
Other popular climbs and treks in the Cordillera Huayhuash are:
- Huayhuash Alpine Circuit trek
Browse our navigation menu to find many more Cordillera Huayhuash expeditions.
Quick Facts about the Cordillera Huayhuash
- Situated at the northern end of the Cordillera Huayhuash, Yerupajá (6,635 metres/21,768 feet) is the second highest mountain in Peru and considered by many to be the most spectacular.
- Among the most popular things to do and see in the Cordillera Huayhuash are the various hot springs, which are frequented by trekkers and climbers. There is also an old Shining Path base camp on the north shore of Lake Viconga that can be visited.
- Due to its remote location, the Cordillera Huayhuash is home to a number of animal species, including the Andean mountain cat, peregrine falcon, Andean condor, llamas and alpacas.
How To Get To the Cordillera Huayhuash
Most trips to the Cordillera Huayhuash will begin with a flight into Jorge Chavez International Airport (LIM), in Lima. From here, it is possible to take an eight-hour bus ride to Huaraz, where most guides opt to meet and provide transport to the Cordillera Huayhuash.
What To Expect in the Cordillera Huayhuash
Weather: During the climbing season, expect average daily temperatures between 10 ºC and 20 ºC (50 ºF and 70 ºF) in the Cordillera Huayhuash. These tend to decrease at higher elevations and do not include windchill, which can be quite strong on elevated mountain passes. During the dry season, rain is very infrequent in the Cordillera Huayhuash.
Peak Trekking/Climbing Season: May to September
Currency: Sol (PEN), but many guides also accept US dollars (USD).
Language: Spanish, Quechua, Aymara