Our Region – Huaraz, Ancash, Peru – General Information
Huaraz, Cordillera Blanca, Huascaran National Park, Cordillera Huayhuash and Huaraz Weather
Huaraz Treks and Climbs is based in the beautiful and attractive town of Huaraz the center for trekking, walking and climbing in the Cordillera Blanca, the highest tropical mountain range in the world; the Huascaran National Park, one of the Peru’s largest National Park and world heritage area; and the Cordillera Huayhuash, made famous by Joe’s Simpson book and film “Touching the Void”.
Huaraz is surrounded by towering mountains of the Cordillera Blanca and the Cordillera Negra. The town with a population of 150,000 provides a full range of services and activities to visitors, so there are plenty of things to do while enjoying the relaxed atmosphere and picturesque surroundings.
Huaraz is located 450km north of Lima at 3090m and thanks to its close proximity to the Cordillera Blanca; Huascaran National Park is the center for outdoor activities. Extraordinary scenic beauty has earned this region a reputation as a significant sightseeing, walking, trekking, hiking and climbing destination and a “MUST SEE” for anyone travelling to Peru.
Huaraz can cater for all levels of accommodation ensuring that everyone can find accommodation to suit their needs.
Local Cafes and restaurants provide a variety of dining options, from chicken and chips to fine dining and the opportunity to sample local Huaraz and Peruvian food.
Huaraz offers seven day a week shopping facilities with competitively priced goods, including high quality apparel, gift and souvenir shops.
A full range of service exists within the town including ATM facilities, banks, service stations, private clinics, regular public transport services link Huaraz to Catac and Recuay to the South and Carhuaz, Yungay and Caraz to the North.
When you travel to Huaraz, you will be visiting one of the most dramatic and beautiful parts of Peru.
If you need help with planning your Lima hotel and transfers and Huaraz hotel, bus and flight tickets please do not hesitate to contact us. Rodolfo is only too willing to help assist with recommendations and bookings for local transfers and accommodation.
Huascaran National Park
The Huascaran National Park has achieved World Heritage status and recognized as Reserve of Biosphere Core and is renowned as the home of Nevado Huascaran 6768m, the highest tropical mountain in the world and Alpamayo 5947m considered the most beautiful mountain in the world. The park is protected by the Peruvian government in order to safeguard the abundant flora and fauna, geological formations, archaeological remains and the panoramic scenery of the Cordillera Blanca. The park’s 3000 km2 contain 663 glaciers, 296 lakes and 41 tributaries of three important rivers: the Santa, Pativilca and Maranon.
There are many Bus Tours, Day Hikes and long – Multiday trekking circuits and climbing routes within the Huascaran National Park such as the well-known Santa Cruz to Llanganuco trek, Alpamayo or Los Cedros Trek, Lake 69 Hike, Lake Churup Hike, Pisco 5752m climb, Chopicallqui 6354m climb, Alpamayo 5947m Climb, Huascaran 6768m Climb. As well as ecotourism, horse riding, skiing and archaeological excursions.
Cordillera Blanca Mountain Range
The Cordillera Blanca Mountain Range is part of the larger Andes range; it includes 33 major peaks over 5500m in an area 21km wide and 180km long. The highest mountain in Peru is Huascaran and is located here. The Huascaran National Park, created in 1975 encompasses almost the entire range of the Cordillera Blanca.
The 5947m Alpamayo Mountain was declared “world’s Most Beautiful Mountain” by an international survey led by former climber in 1966 in Munich.
There are sixteen 6000m peaks in the Cordillera Blanca with a 400m topographic prominence and a further seventeen peaks over 5500m. The estimated number of glaciers is 260 glaciers, the Laguna Paron, biggest in the Cordillera Blanca is considered the most beautiful of all glacial lakes. Other famous lakes include the Llanganuco Lakes in the Llanganuco Valley at the foot of Huascaran. There are 22 principal hot springs in the Callejon de Huaylas, Monterrey is the closest to Huaraz and Chancos is only 30km north of Huaraz.
Cordillera Huayhuash Mountain Range
The Cordillera Huayhuash is located in the boundaries of the Ancash Region, Lima Region and Huanuco Region. There are several lakes including Soltera Cocha, Jahuacocha, Carhuacocha and Sarapococha.
It is 30km long and its peaks are much more exposed and have more difficult access than those from the Cordillera Blanca.
Aligned north to south, the main range of some 20 peaks stretches for approximately 25km, with a subsidiary range of smaller peaks stretching out to the west for approximately 15km. Six of the peaks exceed 6000m. Being Yerupaja 6617m the highest mountain in the Cordillera Huayhuash and the second highest mountain in Peru and Siula Grande 6344m, made famous by Joe Simpson in “Touching the Void”.
Huaraz, Cordillera Blanca and Cordillera Huayhuash Weather
The trekking and climbing season is between May and August with July being the busiest month. It is the dry season in the highlands of Peru (Huaraz – Cordillera Blanca & Huayuash). During the dry season in the mountains of the Cordillera Blanca and Huayhuash the nights can be very cold, often falling to freezing in May and September. Average temperatures from menus 5C to 18C.
May, June, July & August
This is the dry season with little chance of rain. During the day you can expect blue skies pretty much of the time. Since we are close to the equator and very high up, the sun can be very strong so always bring sun protection block, a hat and sunglasses. It is comfortable to trek in shorts and t-shirt. However when the sun goes in it can get cold very quickly so always have a warm jacket, fleece and long pants close at hand. You also need a good 4-season sleeping bag at night and a warm jacket, woolly hat and scarf.
September & October
Some years the rain can start as early as September. However usually we just get a couple of heavy showers each week and the rest of the time it is sunny or overcast. The rain just lasts for a couple of hours and dries up pretty quick. Good gear for rain is recommended.
November, December, January, February, March and April
The wet season usually starts around mid-November and can last until the end of March. January, February and March are at the height of the wet season. During these months you can expect rain at any time. Bring good waterproof clothing, pack your sleeping bag within several plastic bags, and bring sun protection block and a good hat. In fact prepare for just about all four seasons in one day!! Huaraz is generally very quiet during these months.