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11 days in Peru
Grade: Beginner


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Peru’s high mountains and rich history and culture make it an amazing destination for any anyone’s mountaineering bucket list. Our expedition starts in the bustling mountain town of Huaraz, which is situated at 10,000 feet and offers a perfect staging ground for us to begin acclimatizing while exploring the rich history of the Cordillera Blanca. The next day we hike to beautiful Laguna Churup, which lies at 14,763 feet. There we enjoy lunch and can dip our feet in the turquoise water of the laguna surrounded by mountain views. On the third day of our expedition the climbing begins. We make an alpine start for an important acclimatization ascent of Huarapasca at 17,757 ft, towering high above Huaraz.

Our expedition now turns to the heart of the Cordillera. We drive to our trailhead in the village of Pashpa, organize our gear to be carried by pack donkeys and walk into the Ishinca Valley where we establish our basecamp at the feet of the glaciated spires of the Andes. Over the following days we climb Urus Este (17,782 ft) and Nevado Ishinca (18,143 ft). We conclude these ascents with rest days in basecamp, which we’ll use to refresh the climbing skills we will need for our main objective: Toqllaraju . On Day 8, we establish a high camp on the flanks of Toqllaraju (19,797 ft) and spend the night. Then we finish our expedition by ascending above 6,000 meters to its summit. The next morning we eat a delicious breakfast before hiking back to Pashpa. We transfer to Huaraz to celebrate the completion of the trip with a nice dinner of local Peruvian cuisine or that big juicy burger if you prefer.

What skills are required to attempt Ishinca Valley?

The peaks of the Ishinca Valley offer an excellent introduction to the exceptional climbing in Peru. Previous high-altitude mountaineering experience is preferred but not required. Climbers should have some previous experience with walking in crampons, self-arrest, and rope team travel and some experience with rock or ice climbing because the ascent of Toqllaraju involves small sections of steeper climbing and rappelling.

What is included in the Ishinca Valley Expedition?

The trip begins in Huaraz. All transport to hotels and trailheads is included, plus 4 nights in hotels. Also included: all meals while on the mountain, dinner at the end of the trip, pack donkeys, all mountain tents, stoves, fuel, and group climbing equipment.

What are the risks of climbing in Peru?

Any high-altitude adventure has risks. One of the best ways to mitigate these risks is to ensure you are in great physical condition before arriving in Huaraz. Stamina, training, and experience are required to deal with the challenges of the peaks in Peru. Altitude sickness is one of the primary risks on a high-altitude climb. It is important to alert your guide if you experience significant altitude illness.

Guides can mitigate the risks of climbing but cannot completely eliminate them. Objective hazards such as rock and ice fall, crevasses and avalanche danger will be monitored by our professional guides to bring you the best experience possible.

Day to Day Itinerary

Day 1 • Arrive Huaraz
Day 2 • Laguna Churup • 14,763 ft
Day 3 • Acclimatization Climb of Huarapasca • 17,757 ft
Day 4 • Pashpa • Ishinca Valley • 14,400 ft
Day 5 • Urus Este • 17,782 ft
Day 6 • Nevado Ishinca • 18,143 ft
Day 7 • Ishinca Valley
Day 8 • Toqllaraju High Camp • 16,732 ft
Day 9 • Toqllaraju • 19,797 ft
Day 10 • Return to Huaraz
Day 11 • Depart Huaraz

My trip to Peru with Mountain Gurus was amazing. The itinerary kept our team moving and allowed for acclimatization before our climbs of Nevado Ishinca and Toqllaraju.” May 2016, John


Ishinca Valley Climb

Expedition begins and ends in Huaraz, Peru

Day 1 • Arrive Huaraz • 10,013 feet

Day 2 • Laguna Churup • 14,763 ft

Day 3 • Acclimatization Climb of Huarapasca • 17,757 ft

Day 4 • Pashpa • Ishinca Valley • 14,400 ft

Day 5 • Urus Este • 17,782 ft

Day 6 • Nevado Ishinca • 18,143 ft

Day 7 • Ishinca Valley

Day 8 • Toqllaraju High Camp • 16,732 ft

Day 9 • Toqllaraju • 19,797 ft

Day 10 • Return to Huaraz

Day 11 • Depart Huaraz




Rates are quoted based on double/twin sharing hotel accommodations while in Huaraz. Single room fees apply.

Deposit and Payments

  • $700.00 deposit includes a $500.00 non-refundable registration fee, due with application.
  • Balance due 120 days prior to start date.
  • The balance can be paid by bank transfer, wire transfer, or by credit card with a convenience fee of 3.0%

Price Includes

  • Park fees
  • Scheduled land transportation to and from trailheads and hotels in Huaraz
  • Hotels in Huaraz
  • Scheduled meals during the expedition
  • Professional mountain guide. An American guide will be present for larger groups in addition to a fully certified local guide.
  • All group equipment for the expedition, including tents, stoves and group climbing gear.

Price Does Not Include

  • International airfare and meals during travel
  • Transportation between Lima and Huaraz
  • Non-scheduled airport transfers
  • Non-scheduled meals
  • Personal gear
  • Trip cancellation insurance (highly recommended)
  • Single room supplement (hotels only) $300
  • Medical and evacuation coverage
  • Early departure fees
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Alcoholic drinks



Program Location:
Begins and ends in Huaraz, Peru

Visa/Entry Information:
A valid passport is required for American citizens to enter Peru. American citizens do not need a visa for visits of up to 30 days for tourism.

Health & Immunizations:
Immunizations are not required for entry into Peru.

Flight Travel Information:
Jorge Chavez international Airport (LIM), Lima

International Departures:
Itineraries reflect the date and time you will need to arrive in country for a program. Mountain Gurus programs begin and end in the country’s destination city. When booking your flight, you will need to account for travel time and crossing the international dateline if needed. It is easiest to give your booking agent the day and time you will need to arrive.

Meals and Food:
All meals are provided as per meal schedule. See itinerary.

A complete clothing and equipment list specific to your program will be sent to you in the pre-departure packet upon reservation. For your safety and comfort, it is extremely important that you adhere strictly to the equipment list.

Ishinca Valley Fitness & Training

Climbing Grade: Beginner   

Our climbs will start at high-altitude huts and lodges allowing us to acclimatize and rest between summit climbs. Due to the high-altitude nature of these climbs we recommend that climbers be in good physical condition with previous climbing experience.

Prior to the expedition we recommend climbing a Cascade volcano to master the skills essential for reaching the summit.

Here is a suggested progression of climbs before attempting peaks in Peru:

  • Northwest Climb (Mount Baker, Mount Rainier, Mount Shuksan)
  • Glacier Mountaineering Course
  • Mexico Volcanoes
  • Mount Elbrus
  • Ecuador Volcanoes
  • Island Peak


A complete clothing and equipment list specific to your trip will be sent to you in the PreClimb information upon reservation.

Head and Face

  • Warm Hat: Wool/ synthetic, one that covers the ears.
  • Buff or Balaclava
  • Sun Hat or Baseball Cap
  • Glacier Glasses: Essential eye protection at altitude. Wrap around style or side shields. A category 4 lens is required.
  • Goggles: Dark lenses to help with snow and wind.
  • Sunscreen: SPF 30+
  • Lip Balm: SPF 30+
  • Climbing LED Headlamp: Bring one extra set of batteries.

Upper Body

  • Baselayer Tops: One synthetic long-sleeve shirt.
  • Mid-layer Top: This is a synthetic or fleece top.
  • Softshell Jacket: This breathable but wind-and-weather resistant jacket. Hoods are highly recommended.
  • Hardshell Jacket: GORE-TEX© or a fully waterproof shell. Hoods are highly recommended.
  • Light Insulated Jacket: Light synthetic insulated jacket
  • Insulated Jacket: 700+ fill down.


  • Lightweight Gloves: One pair (WINDSTOPPER© is recommended)
  • Softshell Gloves: One pair. Leather palms offer durability and grip.
  • Heavyweight Gloves: Insulated glove or mitten with GORE-TEX© or waterproof outer.

Lower Body

  • Baselayer Bottom: One pair. Synthetic, no cotton
  • Softshell Pants: One pair. Synthetic, stretchy, non-insulated
  • Hardshell Pants: One pair of GORE-TEX© pants full-length side zips are required; you may need to take off your Hardshell pants without removing your boots.
  • Insulated Pants: One pair of synthetic insulated pants with full side zips.
  • Gaiters: Full-sized waterproof gaiters that must fit snugly over your mountaineering boots.


  • Mountaineering Boots: Full shank crampon compatible. Double plastic mountaineering boots or Heavy weight synthetic/ hybrid mountaineering boots are required.
  • Mediumweight Socks: Two pair of wool or synthetic socks.
  • Heavyweight Socks: Two pair of wool or synthetic socks for sleeping in and for summit day.

Note: Please read our Mountaineering Boot and Crampon guide for more information.


  • Sleeping Bag: Bring a warm bag (rated to 0ᵒ fahrenheit).

Packing and Backpack

  • Backpack: One 60-70L pack with good support, adequate to carry personal.
  • Duffel: One large duffel for transporting gear.
  • Liner Bags: Two large plastic contractor bags.

Climbing Gear

  • Ice axe: 55-65cm mountaineering axe.
  • Crampons: 12-point steel with anti-balling plates.
  • Climbing Helmet: Lightweight
  • Alpine Harness: Lightweight alpine harness with adjustable leg loops.
  • Trekking Poles: Adjustable and collapsible with snow baskets.
  • Locking Carabiners: (2) Large pear-shaped, screw gate locking carabiners.
  • Non-locking Carabiners: (2) Wire gate non-locking carabiners.
  • Nylon Sling: (2) 60cm nylon slings


  • Water Bottle: Two, 1L wide-mouth plastic bottles. NALGENE©

Personal Health and First Aid

  • Snacks and drinks
  • Small personal first-aid kit and medications
  • Plastic bowl, insulated mug, and spoon
  • Toilet paper, blue bag or wag bag
  • Earplugs

Frequently Asked Questions

How hard is this climb and what technical skills do I need?

Climbers should have basic snow and mountaineering experience. We recommend taking our 3 Day Intro Mountaineering Course or 5 Day Glacier Mountaineering Course.

When is the best season to climb?

Peru’s main climbing season lasts from May to July.

How much will my pack weigh on summit day?

Generally, pack weights will range from 20-25 lbs. You will carry extra layers of warm clothing, food, and water on your summit push.

What is the guide to climber ratio?

Local IFMGA certified guide’s lead our Peru expeditions. We strive to maintain a 3:1 climber to guide ratio on summit day. Additional assistant guides or American guides will be present for larger groups.