Day 6: Second day on the trek to Machu Picchu. Today, we met Mt. Salkantay, up close and it did not get any more friendly. This mountain holds the title as scariest mountain I’ve seen in person. We managed the trek from camp to 15,088 feet, taking a break at Salkantay pass. Having some spare time due to our pace, another guide gave us a top that an incredible glacial lake was just over a ridge, about a quarter of a mile off the trail. OUr buddy Josh, turned to Alex, Mick and me, and with some “last one there [sucks]” line, we took off, Canon T2i or T3i’s in hand and we sprinted toward the ridge. If you’re reading fast or skimming this, I’ll reiterate that we’re above 15,000ft. After about 200 yards of hoping over rocks, weaving between boulders and avoiding all the loose rock debris, this writer needed to slow his roll. No need to bust an ankle (or worse) or destroy my camera before we arrived at Machu Picchu.
We snapped a few shots and broke off, back to the group, and the side adventure was completely worth any extra effort. If you’ve ever been to a place of natural beauty, you will understand the word “beautiful” lacks true power to describe what you witness.
Elevation adventure: Wake up in the dry mountain valley at approximately 12,600ft, attack the pass of 15,088ft, and complete the day around 9600feet, in a jungle. Take that body.