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Join us for a 11-day tour of the best trails in Huascaran National Park

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Take in the unforgettable scenery of the Cordillera Blanca

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Spend 4 days and 3 nights on the classic Santa Cruz Trail

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Cross the 15,600ft Punta Union Pass

Andes Running and Trekking Tour


With a similar itinerary to our Santa Cruz Trail Adventure, The Cordillera Blanca Running and Trekking Tour is designed for participants who might not want to run every trail or for those traveling with non-runners.  With additional days on the trail, we will cover slightly shorter distances each day to accommodate trekkers while still providing a great outing for our runners.

Dates : June 12 – 22, 2017        Duration: 11 Days, 3 Nights Camping

Dates : June 2 – 12, 2018

Group Size: 4 – 10 Participants, 2+ Guides        Difficulty Rating:

Price: $2,995, Double Occupancy        What does this include?

  • Overview

    P1130686The Santa Cruz Trail is the most popular and beautiful trekking route through the Cordillera Blanca. This 28 mile trail passes by many of the waterfalls, crystal lakes, and high peaks that define Huascaran National Park. Some of the highlights of this Cordillera Blanca Running and Trekking Tour will include crossing over the continental divide at Punta Union Pass, 15,600′, a side run to Alpamayo Base Camp and three nights of full service camping in beautiful alpine meadows. Our gear will be transported to each camp by an arriero led team of burros, giving you the freedom to run or hike with nothing on your back but the essentials for the day. With the obvious challenges of running and hiking at 15,000’, we will prepare you with multiple day outings in and around Huascaran National Park to help you acclimatize to the thin air of the high Andes. Following each scenic day we will return to the comfort of our hotel in Huaraz or one of two cozy mountain eco-lodges near the Park and dine on authentic local cuisine.

    P1120712What to expect

    The Santa Cruz Trail from Vaqueria to Cashapampa will be our main objective this 11-day adventure in the Cordillera Blanca. This will take place after a week of acclimatization outings in and around Huascaran National Park. Some of the highlights of these day trips will include runs to turquoise alpine lakes such as Laguna Churup and Laguna 69, as well as a longer outing up the meadow filled Llaca Valley. Only after visiting these higher elevations multiple times and feeling well acclimatized will we start our trip up and over Punta Union Pass. Please see the detailed itinerary for the day to day outings and acclimatization plan.

  • Please note that daily runs are subject to change due to weather and trail conditions. In the event of bad weather, MOST planned runs have a contingency option that will give us a safer, more enjoyable, run for the day.

    Day 1: Arrive in Lima

    Depart the U.S. and arrive in Lima in the afternoon. We will be there to pick you up at the airport and transfer you to our hotel in the Miraflores District.

    Lodging: Miraflores

    Meals included: Dinner

    Day 2: Travel to Huaraz

    Travel from Lima via bus to the city of Huaraz. This ride will take 8 hours as it passes along the desert coast and up into the highlands of the Andes. Our acclimatization will begin today as the bus will climb up and over a 13,000′ pass before descending into the Callejon de Huaylas and onto Huaraz situated at 10,000′.

    Lodging: La Casa de Zarela (10,000′)

    Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

    Day 3 – Acclimatization run/hike above Huaraz

    Today we will go for our first run and begin acclimating our bodies to a higher elevation. After breakfast at our hotel, we will head above town and stretch our legs on a nice run through the countryside.P1120402 copy This run will take us along secluded country roads giving us views of Huaraz and the snow capped, high peaks of the Cordillera Blanca.

    Lodging: La Casa de Zarela (10,000′)

    Run/hike: 5-8 miles, up to 1,800′ Gain, 1800′ Loss

    Elevation: 10,000′ – 11,800′

    Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

    Day 4 – Acclimatization run/hike to Laguna Churup

    Today we leave Huaraz and hike to the beautiful Laguna Churup. Located at 14,700’, Laguna Churup sits below the 18,000′ Churup Peak and is accessed by a fairly steep trail climbing 2000′ in nearly 2 miles. Although most will find this trail too difficult to run and choose to hike, our goal is to merely travel to this elevation for acclimatization purposes.P1120454 copy After spending some time at the lake we will travel back down to the trailhead and have casual run along country roads to the Lazy Dog Inn where we will stay for the next two nights.

    Lodging: Lazy Dog Inn (11,800′)

    Hike to Laguna Churup: 4 miles, 2,000′ Gain, 2,000′ Loss

    Run to Lodge: 6 miles, 500′ Gain, 1,400′ Loss

    Elevation: 12,700′ – 14,700′

    Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

    Day 5 – Valley run/hike in Huascaran N.P.

    Today will be our first long alpine valley run into Huascaran National Park and will no doubt be one of the running and hiking highlights of the trip. With many beautiful open river valleys to choose from near the Lodge, you no doubt have a great day on the soft grassy trails to one of the many alpine lakes.P1120756 (1) copy Following our run we will travel back to the Lazy Dog Inn for one more night of relaxation.

    Lodging: Lazy Dog Inn (11,800′)

    Run/hike: Up to 16 miles, 1,800′ Gain, 1,800′ Loss (out and back trail that hikers can turn around at any time)

    Elevation: 12,300′ – 14,100′

    Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

    Day 6 – Run/ Hike to Laguna 69

    Today will travel to the famous Llanganuco Valley and run to one of the prettiest lakes in the entire Park, Laguna 69.Running Gallery - 18934 This lake is known for is stunning turquoise color, huge waterfalls and surrounding giant peaks. From the lake we will return to the trailhead and drive over Portachuelo Pass (15,500′) and to the town of Vaqueria, the start of the Santa Cruz Trail.

    Lodging: Illariy Lodge (12,200′)

    Run/hike: 8 miles, 2,200′ Gain, 2,200′ Loss

    Elevation: 12,800′ – 15,000′

    Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

    Day 7 – Begin Santa Cruz Trail, Vaqueria to Paria

    Running Gallery - 13310Today we will start the Santa Cruz Trail and run to the first camp below Punta Union Pass. This will be a fairly short day but will give us time to settle into our first camp and possibly take one of the side hikes in the ares.

    Camp: Paria (12,500′)

    Run/hike: 7 miles, 1,000′ Gain

    Elevation: 12,200 – 12,500′

    Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

    Day 8 – Paria to Taullipampa, Punta Union Pass (15,600ft!)

    Today we will tackle Punta Union Pass. At 15,600ft, Punta Union is at the head of the long Santa Cruz Valley and is one of the most scenic view points in the entire Cordillera Blanca.Running Gallery - 21833 From the Pass we will descend to Taullipampa, one of the prettiest campsites along the Santa Cruz.

    Camp: Taullipampa (13,700′)

    Run/hike: 7 miles, 3,100′ Gain, 1,900′ Loss

    Elevation: 12,500 – 15,600′

    Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

    Day 9 – Taullipampa to Llamacorral, Alpamayo Base Camp

    From Taullipampa, today’s run is incredibly scenic, fun and mostly flat or down hill.P1130763 There is an option to take one of the side trails to Alpamayo Base Camp, once labeled the most beautiful mountain in the world, which can add to an already great day.

    Camp: Llamacorral (12,350′)

    Run/hike: 7 – 12 miles, 1,350′ Loss

    Elevation: 12,350 – 13,700′

    Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

    Day 10 – Llamacorral to Cashapampa

    Today we will finish the Santa Cruz Trail with a nice short run/ hike down valley to the town of Cashapampa.Running Gallery - 19357 Here we will gather our gear from our arrieros, say good bye to our new friends and drive back to Huaraz for one last night below the Cordillera Blanca.

    Lodging: La Casa de Zarela (10,000′)

    Run/hike: 7 miles, 2,750′ Loss

    Elevation: 9,600 – 12,350′

    Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

    Day 11 – Fly to Lima and travel home

    Today we will fly back to Lima and connect to our international flights home. Flight from Huaraz leave mid morning and arrive in Lima one hour later. When scheduling your international flight be sure to choose one that leaves either in the late afternoon or night.

    Meals included: Breakfast

  • Lodging

    All lodging, between our scheduled first and last nights in Lima, are included in the price. We believe that while on vacation the places you stay can dramatically affect a trip of this sort. Staying in nicer, more comfortable, places at a slightly higher cost does nothing but benefit the group. If you eat well, sleep well and enjoy your accommodations you will most likely perform better on our daily runs. While in Huaraz we will be staying at La Casa de Zarela which is just a few minutes walk from the Plaza De Armas in the heart of the city. This small comfortable hotel is a great place to relax while taking in the views of the city and mountains from one of the many terraces or roof top patio. During our initial acclimatization runs in Huascaran National Park we will be staying at The Lazy Dog Inn just out side the entrance of the Park. This ranch style eco-lodge sits high in the hills above Huaraz and offers a quiet relaxing getaway from the city. While here we will have close access to our daily runs, large comfortable rooms and delicious home cooked meals. Not to mention spectacular views of the mountains and surrounding countryside.
    All trip prices are based on double room occupancy when staying in hotels. Most, but not all, of our accommodations have the option for single occupancy if you prefer. Please inquire with Highline for these options and additional costs.

    Phil Peru 2015 - 20103 (1)Camping

    This trip will have a total of three nights full service camping while in the Santa Cruz Valley. All nights will be spent in beautiful established campsites in green, open meadows along the Santa Cruz Trail. Our camps will consist of many tents including large cooking and dining tents and several roomy sleeping tents (double occupancy). All of our group and personal bags will be transported daily by a team of burros led by our small hired staff of locals. These friendly local experts will not only be setting up and take down camp when needed, they will also be preparing all of our delicious meals, leaving you time to relax from the day’s run and refuel for the next.

  • Gear

    High in the mountains of Huascaran National Park temps can fluctuate significantly like in most alpine environment and we need to plan for any conditions we might come across. Please see the detailed gear list and please contact us if you have any questions.


  • Difficulty: 3

    This adventure has intermediate level outings with distances up to 17 miles if desired, moderate elevation gain days with altitudes up to 16,000’
    Running Gallery - 13342Although we do our best to help you prepare for higher elevations it is a known fact that everyone acclimatizes differently. With this in mind, know that running at these altitudes will still be challenging for all whether you are acclimatized or not and you should not expect your body to perform as it does at home. Most runners should expect to hike many sections of these trails, especially during the first few days at altitude. During this time most will enjoy running only the easier flats and gradual down hill sections while hiking the uphills like many people do during longer ultra-marathon races. Because of the beautiful scenery through out our trips most people have no problem adopting this philosophy of “run when I can, hike when I can’t” and simply take in the beauty of Peru while hiking.

    How strong of a runner do I need to be for this trip?

    Highline Running Adventures offers trips for everyone. You do not need to be an experienced trail runner, ultra marathoner or avid outdoor enthusiast enjoy our adventures. We invite first time trail runners who might not have access to mountainous terrain at home and want to experience the joys of alpine trail running. Like any endeavor in the mountains, most runners will have a far better experience if they are in shape and should begin a training program well before the trip. We are available for training tips and advice for those who are new to this kind of running.
    Although Highline Running Adventures caters to most ability levels, most runners will find our Peru Adventures to be more challenging than other trips. With higher elevations and typical climbs over 15,000’ mountain passes, those interested should plan a training routine months in advance. With proper training, most runners will have a more enjoyable time whether you are an experienced mountain runner or someone looking for a good personal challenge. Please study the detailed itinerary for the day to day distances and elevation gains. Keep in mind that we will typically have most of the day available to complete these distances and you will most likely have the option to take significant breaks at scenic over looks, lakes, mountain passes etc.. More importantly, one should be able to complete these distances day after day because there will be few rest days planned. As always, we are available to help advise you in training for this more advanced terrain.

  • Cost Includes:

    • Experienced guides
    • All in country transportation including airport transfers
    • All in country lodging
    • Most breakfasts and dinners, and some lunches, in town or at lodges (See itinerary for what meals are included)
    • Arrieros, Cooks, Burros and/or Llamas
    • All group camping equipment
    • All camp food
    • All National Park entrance fees

     Not Included:

    • Guide gratuity
    • International transportation to and from Lima
    • Hotel costs before and/or after scheduled trip dates
    • Personal trail food, gels, energy drink mixes
    • Any alcohol with meals
    • Trip cancellation insurance
    • Personal running and camping gear and clothing


    If you have any questions regarding one of our trips or would like help deciding which trip is right for you please feel free to give us call. Once you have decided, just let us know and we will send you a registration form and other additional information you will need. We do require a non-refundable $1000 deposit to hold your spot at the time of registration. We recommend doing so as soon as possible since all of trips are subject to availability and have a maximum of 10 participants. Final Payment is due 90 days prior to all trips. If registering within 90 days of the trip full payment will be due at that time.


    We strongly recommend trip cancellation insurance for all of our trips.

    Because we must invest a certain amount to reserve your place on this trip with our lodging partners, transportation and hired help we can not always refund the your full amount if you need to cancel. We understand that every situation is different and we will do our best to work with you if you need to to cancel your trip for any reason. As a policy, our cancellation refund deadlines are as follows:

    • Cancellations more that 90 days prior to trip: Full refund minus deposit.
    • Cancellations between 45-90 days prior to trip: Refund 50% of trip costs minus deposit.
    • Cancellations within 45 days of trip: No refund.