Salkantay + Machu Picchu trek / 7 days / April 29 to May 5, 2016 / Alpaca Expeditions
We’d booked a group trip but no one else signed up for the seven day trek so it ended up being a private trip!
Ichupata – Inca Chiriasca Pass – Inca Canal
The rest of the afternoon was through more valleys, green fields, and babbling brooks. We eventually said good bye to Salkantay Mountain and soon started to see some signs of civilization. There were a couple tiny human settlements as well as animal pens made from rock. Juan Carlos, our guide, said that his uncle used to live out here; however, the newer generations don’t want to live this tough isolated life. Who knows how much longer this way of life will last.
We made it to camp with the setting sun. We saw the tents and horses down in the distance long before we actually reached them. They were set up right next to the Inca Canal. Even if we didn’t know what it was, being perfectly straight was a giant clue to its manmade nature. This 500 year old canal was built by the Incas and much of it has lasted all this time. However, you can see areas where it’s failing, where the rocks fell away or had been removed. The problem is that this land is not a national park so the government doesn’t take care of it. As for the farmers, they have more pressing things to do than look after it. It’s sad, though.