Day 1: La Paz (3600m) – Sorata (2600m)
Our first day is the drive to Sorata. As we head out of La Paz into the city of El Alto, we have great views of La Paz city and the surrounding mountains. Later we cross the rolling landscape of the Altiplano where we can see the Cordillera Real in the distance. After 2 hours we reach a pass which takes us down into the valley of Sorata. Along the way we stop for photos of Illampu, one of the most impressive mountains in the Cordillera Real with it’s jagged snow covered peak. Once in Sorata we notice the warmer climate and take advantage to enjoy a cool beer in the plaza.
3 – 4 hours driving (LD) Hostel
Day 2: Sorata (2700m) – Lachathiya (4200m)
We will start our trekking from Sorata. We follow the small herders tracks and pass by campesinos (farmers) as they work in the fields in the same way they have done for millennia. On the way to Lachathiya we can see Illampu (6368m), Ancohuma (6472m) and Nevada Piramide (5097m). Near Lachathiya we will set up camp.
5 - 7 hours walking (BLD) camping
Day 3: Lachathiya – Ecia Utana Pampa, Ancoma (3800m)
In the morning we will have a two hour climb up to the pass of Abra Illampu (4749m), from where we will have our last good views of the north face of Illampu. Then we will have a long walk down to the old village of Ecia Utana Pampa, where we can see little medieval looking fields planted with Andean potatoes. Remember the Andes is where the potato originated – so thank the locals for your chips and gratin! We will set up camp near this village.
5 - 6 hours (BLD) camping
Day 4: Ancoma – Cocoyo (3600m)
First thing in the morning we have a good climb to the pass of Korahua (4480m). From here we can look down to the valley of Cocoyo. Then there will be a steep downhill to the bottom of the valley, where we will set up camp, just before the village of Cocoyo.
4 - 6 hours (BLD) camping
Day 5: Cocoyo – Chajolpaya (4200m)
We start the morning with a climb up to the pass of Sarani (4700m) passing the village of Cocoyo and some old houses and mines. We will have lunch at the pass before heading down to the valley of Chajolpaya where the children always come out to have a look at the passing “gringos”!. Everyone is always super friendly and the kids are great fun.
5 - 7 hours (BLD) camping
Day 6: Chajolpaya – Negruni (4200m)
It will be a long climb up to the pass of Negruni (5000m), where there might be snow. We will walk down the valley, where sometimes you can see women from the villages weaving beautiful brightly coloured textiles. We will make camp next to a small lake.
7 - 8 hours (BLD) camping
Day 7: Negruni – Palca (4000m)
An easy day of walking as we will walk further down into the valley and pass the small community of Palca. At the church, we will climb for an hour to get to the start of the next pass for the following day.
4 - 5 hours (BLD) camping
Day 8: Palca – Waraco (4500m)
We have a step climb first thing in the morning to reach the top of the pass. If you turn around at the lake you will have amazing views of Nevada Chachumani (6000m). We will continue down the other side of the pass to meet up with the road and we will make camp just before the next pass.
6 - 7 hours (BLD) camping
Day 9: Waraco – Lake Quta Qutia (4550m)
This day is spent following the road, over the pass onto the Altiplano (4950m). We will continue to follow the road, and later in the day we will meet with the driver, who will provide us with fresh food for the rest of the trip.
NOTE at this point of the trip, if anyone is sick or injured etc. they can go back with the driver to La Paz.
6 - 7 hours (BLD) camping
Day 10: Lake Quta Qutia – Laguna Ajwañi (4600m)
We will leave the road and climb a pass, at the top we will have our first views of Lake Titikaka (3810m). We will continue walking through the Altiplano, which is very open and dry. We will drop steeply down into a valley and then one last short climb before we make camp next to a small lake with lots of bird life.
6 - 7 hours (BLD) camping
Day 11: Laguna Ajwañi – Condoriri (4700m)
This day we will have to make an early start, we have three pass to cross and it’s a long day. At the second pass we will get our first views of the Cabaza de Condor (5648m), the Mather horn of Bolivia. Crossing the last pass we will get to the base camp of Condoriri. The camp is in beautiful surroundings next to a lake with great views of the mountains and if we are lucky we can have freshly caught trout for dinner.
8 - 9 hours (BLD) camping
We have a rest day in the base camp, and a chance for us to prepare for the following days climbing.
Day 13: Condoriri – Pequeño Alpamayo (5370m) - Condoriri
We have an early start in the morning for the ascent of Pequeño Alpamayo. After just an hour of walking we will reach the glacier. Here we need to put our crampons on, and head up the ice. First we have to climb Mt Tarija (5200m), going over the top and down a little way on the other side. Last 100m of climbing is good fun with views of Huayna Potosi (6088m). Same route back down.
7 - 9 hours (BLD) camping
Day 14: Condoriri – Paso Zongo (4700m) Refugio Huayna Potosi
We have an easy walk back down were we meet our transport to take us to Paso Zongo. Here we will spend the night in one of the Refugio’s
1 – 2 hours walking, 2 – 3 hours driving (BLD) Hostel
Day 15: Refugio Huayna Potosi – High camp (5200m)
In the morning we will meet the porters to take our camp equipment up to the high camp. After walking through rocks and moraine we will spend the night in the Refugio just below the snow line. In the evening we will prepare for the next day climbing.
2 - 4 hours (BLD) Hostel
Day 16: High camp – Summit (6088m) – La Paz (3600m)
An early start as it is a long day and it will be cold. With crampons on we start our day of climbing. The last section to the summit is great climbing. From the top we can see from Illimani (6439m) to Illampu (6368m). After we take our photo shot on top, we head back to high camp. There we pack up camp and the porters meet us to bring all the equipment and personal gear down. Later we have a short drive back to La Paz.
9 - 11 hours of walking, 1 hour of driving (BL)
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