"Walking the Inca Trail" KathyGh's Profile

Cusco

One of the locals going shopping.
Couldn't resist taking ths sneaky photo.

Dead Woman's Pass ~ 2nd day

Almost was Dead Womans Pass when we got to the top. Not only was it hard with climbing, but it was getting difficult to catch your breath the air was so thin.

A really hard climb up to the highest point 4215m on the second day. I was one of the slowest walkers but kept stopping to get my breath and get loads of pictures. We found when we got to the top that the rest of the group had gone down to the next camp without us, so we missed our group photo. Then a steep descent of about 700 m on steps all the way. to the camp for the 2nd night. Stunning views as you get to the top, but gets a bit chilly as you start to descend on the other side. Knees starting to ache at this point and I was so glad to eventually get camp and have something to eat. The Porter had been sent up the path to bring us a hot flask of coca tea. How very welcome it was.

One of the tunnels ~ 3rd day

Steep narrow steps leading down. Head torch required and be careful where you tread as the steps are very narrow, smooth and steep. Really interesting to wonder what is on the other side!

Good bit of engineering to get this tunnel through the rock. Really enjoyed going through the tunnels, I half expected to come out on the other side in a different world! I kept my precious camera in my bag at this stage, in case I slipped and broke it.

Need both hands here to hold onto the side to steady yourself.

Uneven Steps ~ 3rd day in the Cloud Forest

The steps are not even or straight. They were very slippy with the rain and required extreme caution. Slow progress with painful knees at this point. Really glad I wore knee supports, they really helped.

I slipped around here and the guide grabbed me in time to stop me falling off the path! I thought it was worth the 25 dollar tip I gave him at the end of the trek, considering he stopped me from hurting myself and also carried my camera most of the way. He also took me some pictures when I needed both hands to negotiate slippy steep steps.

3rd Day Cloud Forest ~ Narrow Path ?

Pictures like this are misleading as it makes the path look narrow here. Actually the path is a comfortable 1 m. wide at least. Despite my extreme vertigo, it was not at all daunting walking on these forest paths. Just a couple of scary moments where boulders narrow the path, so caution required.

I was extremely frightened before we set off on the trek, after reading blogs and seeing some pictures of the 'narrow' paths. There ARE many paths and steps that are steep and narrow, but when I actually walked the Inca Trail, it was with delight that I realised they were not ALL narrow and steep with a drop off, they just look like that on the pictures. The whole walk was a truly amazing experience and worth the occasional heart stopping moment just to be there. A once in a lifetime adventure, not to be missed. Caution is always required as even if the path isn't narrow, some of the paths in the Forest are slippy.

The Cloud Forest was amazing and experiencing all the different smells, sounds and sights made it worth every scary minute of the walk.

3rd Day Cloud Forest

A bit damp and dark walking through the Rain Forest. We saw humming birds, beautiful Orchids and Moths and even saw Parrots flying over. The trees were hung with moss and lichen. Fortunately, I had a poncho on which kept me dry. What an atmosphere ! Around every corner there was something different to see and smell.

The whole place was dripping wet and this was not yet the rainy season !

After a lovely very steady ascent through the Forest up to the 3rd pass, a quite steep descent to the 3rd camp. Basically keep going until you reach the electricity Pylon then keep right. Knees really hurting by now.

View from the Sungate

Soon after the Sun Gate the mountains opened up to reveal a wonderful sight.

This was absolutely the worst bit of the path for a vertigo sufferer such as myself. Really the only part of the path on which I was actually petrified and had difficulty coping with the fear.
After starting the descent from the Sun Gate on a very good path, there was a really evil set of narrow steep steps with a sheer drop of a few hundred feet and only a wobbly handrail made of an old log to hold on to. Frightening terrifying stuff ... Luckily someone in our group helped me down, otherwise I might have thrown myself off with sheer terror! There were other women at the top of the steps too scared to go down as well. There were tears flowing at this stage with the fear - from me and from other vertigo suffers at the top of the steps who did not dare go down.

BUT I DID IT !!! I did the walk... I got the badge....

Machu Picchu

This is what I did the trek for.

The very hard climbs, the struggle to keep to the path, the terrifying scary slippy vertigo inspiring steps ~ all so I could reach Machu Picchu.

Worth every scary second! Wonderful ..

I would do it all again tomorrow if I had the chance ....

  • Intro Updated Nov 24, 2010
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Comments (6)

  • taigaa001's Profile Photo
    Jan 31, 2011 at 5:50 AM

    Trekking in Peru seems fun. Thanks for your nice page.

  • KathyGh's Profile Photo
    Nov 11, 2010 at 12:24 AM

    Well, thankyou everyone for your comments. I am looking forward to a LOT more travelling. Love it. It's good for the soul !!!!

  • planxty's Profile Photo
    Nov 9, 2010 at 4:32 AM

    Hello Kathy, great photos of Peru, can't wait to see a wole lot more! Hope you enjoy your forthcoming trip to Thailand, it is a wonderful place and certainly lots of photo opportunities. fergy.

  • wise23girl's Profile Photo
    Oct 28, 2010 at 5:12 AM

    I gave you a thumbs up but may not count as it is a short reply..no matter if helpful I understand

  • jumpingnorman's Profile Photo
    Oct 9, 2010 at 9:38 AM

    what a great trek indeed...did you soak at aguas calientes at the end of your hiking? Such beautiful weather when you went :)

  • risse73's Profile Photo
    Jul 29, 2010 at 2:25 PM

    What a gorgeous mountain picture! Love your VT motto Kathy! It is so true. Welcome to this wonderful travel website & hope you enjoy your upcoming trip to Peru. Cheers! ~Marissa

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KathyGh

“It is not the mountains we seek to conquer but ourselves”

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