South America

Huascarán National Park

Huascarán National Park was established in 1975 and has the highest mountain range in the Peruvian Andes. The beauty of the place is incomparable with high pleateau,ravines, torrents, lakes, and glacial features. The forest at the foothill is well maintained and the archeological remains in the park is also much responsible for its soaring tourists footfalls. Approximately the area covered is 1300 square miles. Within the range of the park are thirty mountains that reaches a height of 6000 meters. The Nevado Huascarán stands at 22205 meters. Naturally the flora and fauna of the region will flourish here. The diversity in climate, vegetation, and topography results in a huge biodiversity in the region. The Park lies in the east of the Santa Valley. Cordillera Blanca is known in the world over as one of the most spectacular mountain ranges. Both the National park along with the mountain is one of the natural heritage of the country.

Most of the regions in the Huascarán National Park is accessible by tourists except the high glacial zone. At the most it takes four days to visit the park thoroughly. This place is the ideal location for hikers, trekkers, and nature lovers.It takes you only 8 hours drive from Lima. Casa de Guias, just off the main road here will provide you the necessary information about the mountain treks and the trails as per your convenience. You can also rent trekking gears and porters from here. The Huaráz area hikes will challenge your physical fitness. The whole trail is lined with eucalyptus trees. At the El Mirador, a huge white cross marks the area. The pastoral and countryside feel is ever strong in these trails. Another popular trail preferred by the tourists is the Pitec Trail to Laguna Churup. This small village is totally cut off from commercialization. However after much persuasion with a cab driver he might think things over and drop you to this wonderful rural spot of Peru.The trail commence from the village further uphill. At the base of the Churup mountain trekkers gather and start their journey uphill.

A very difficult but nevertheless a rewarding trek in the Huascarán National Park is the Llanganuco to Santa Cruz Loop trail. It takes you around five strenuous days and starts from Llanganuco lakes. It takes you through a dozen peaks all over 5800 meters. The path descends towards the village of Colcabamba and then aabruptly rises steep towards the Chopicalqui mountain. A little hamlet comes into view where snacking is a good option. Later the trail would get trickier and the high point is reached in the Punta Union region. The huge Andean landscape comes into view. It is one of the most beautiful mountain treks in the world. As you descend towards the little village of Cashapampa, the scenery changes and you are met with swampy pastures where llamas grazes.
Flora and Fauna in Huascarán National Park:

The park is home to wide variety of wildlife species. Also a whooping 779 varieties of plants have been recorded here. With 112 varieties of birds this place is frequented by bird lovers. The Andean Condor, Torrent duck and the Puna Tinamou are endemic to the region. In the Catac region you get to see the Puyas Raimondi.

Cultural Heritage of Huascarán National Park:

Many ethnic groups settled here for centuries. The ruins at Gekosh and Chuchumpunta and at Willcahuain-Huyllap-Pumacayan, and Hechkap-Jonkapampa is ample proof about its archaic history. . The northern part of the Park seemed to have been inhabited. The remains unearthed here dates back to 2000 years.