National park of Huascaran – Laguna Orconcocha – Huaraz
Even though the weather was not very stable and clouds covered the mountains most of the time, we wanted to get into the national park of the Cordillera Blanca. A small dirt road brought us the few kilometers from the valley to a deep cut in the mountains. We enter the mountains through these pillars of rocks left and right. It felt like entering a cathedral. The road constantly lead up and finally a crystal blue lake on the right side appeared. The water is intensively colored and looks almost artificial. We stopped and had a look around.
We passed the small lake and continue the valley to a second lagoon. The landscape is unreal. The colorful lakes, steep walls of rock, and above, visible from time to time through the clouds the white glaciers of the high peaks.
At the end of the second lagoon there is an open area, which is marked as campsite. We pitched up our tent and met the only neighbors, a young couple from France who travels for more than one year in their camper with their 2 little children. Since they come from south, we exchanged some information and have a little chatted before the cold forces us to return to the tent.
The next day we made a little hike. We actually wanted to go to Lake 69, a little lagoon which lays in between high mountains. It is a few hour hike, but I didn’t feel very well and so we decided not to finish the way to the lagoon as it is located at 4700m altitudes. It was still really beautiful and we enjoyed every step we took. The hike led through a valley with cows enjoying the warmth of the sun. The flat ground of the valley had rich green gras, a little stream peacefully led through the meadows. As we continued to hike further down the valley, the flat area suddenly ends with steep walls. From all sides long waterfalls feed the little stream that flows in the valley. The highest peak in Peru was just uncovering from the clouds and so we have fantastic views into the high mountains surrounding us.
We left the beautiful valley and headed for Huarez, which we reached just after sunset.
As many cities of Peru Huarez is pretty chaotic when you enter. Traffic and the chaos don’t make it very pleasant to ride through the city.
The city itself doesn’t really have much to offer either. The main topic here is the mountains. On every corner guides offer their trips, rent equipment and advertise adventure tours.