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"One of the most beautiful trekking routes in the world"

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A fully supported stage run around the entire Huayhuash mountain range.

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6 Unforgettable Stages | 85 Miles | 11 High Mountain Passes

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..."will leave you breathless and in awe every step of the way!"

The Huayhuash Challenge Stage Run


Located just south of the Cordillera Blanca, the Cordillera Huayhuash is a small 30km long mountain range of towering icy peaks. The trekking circuit around this stunning range has been labeled as one of the most beautiful treks in the world as well as the most scenic in Peru. With multiple peaks standing over 20,000’, enormous ice falls, cascading waterfalls, turquoise lakes and expansive green pampas, this circuit will leave you in awe every step of the way.

Dates : June 10 – 22, 2017        Duration: 13 Days, 4 Nights Camping

Dates : June 23 – July 5, 2018

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

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

  • Overview

    Although this route has become quite popular with hikers over the years, attempting to run the circuit is a significantly more challenging undertaking and is one of the more demanding trips we offer. With long distance days at high altitudes, this trip is the ultimate adventures for those experienced mountain runners looking for a challenge. Most days will involve multiple high mountain pass crossings over 15,000’ and high elevation gain that will take you to some of the most scenic view points in the Andes. If you are the type of runner who enjoys putting in long days on amazing trails to be rewarded with breathtaking views, this is the trip for you.

    P1130109Some of the highlights of this trail include running over 11 significant mountain passes over 14,000’, ascending to dramatic view points like Punta Siula and Cuyoc, visiting the relaxing Viconga Hot Springs and four nights camping in some of the most beautiful alpine meadows in Peru. All of your gear will be transported daily to each camp by an arriero led team of burros giving you the freedom to run with nothing on your back but the essentials for the day. With the obvious challenges of running over high altitude passes, we will prepare you with multiple day runs in and around Huascaran National Park helping you acclimatize to the thin air of the high Andes prior to starting the Huayhuash Circuit. Following each of these scenic day runs we will return to the comfort of our hotel in Huaraz or cozy mountain eco-lodge near the Park and dine on authentic local cuisine.

    What to Expect

    Circumnavigating the Cordillera Huayhuash from Llamac to Llamac in 6 days will be our main objective of this this 13 day adventure. This six-stage loop course is roughly 85 miles long, has a total elevation gain of about 22,000ft and an average elevation of 14,200ft. This stage run is designed for experienced mountain runners and we recommend it to those who have completed challenging mountain races with high elevation gain in the past. Those wanting to join this trip should be familiar with long days in the mountains and should expect to hike long sections of the trail everyday due to steep inclines, rough trails and high altitude. Interested yet?

    P1130317 copyThe Huayhuash Circuit will take place during the second half of this 13 day trip and after a week of training/ acclimatization runs. This will include 3 separate day run/hikes in and around Huascaran National Park near Huaraz. Some of these highlighted day trips will include a run to the turquoise Laguna Churup and a longer run up the meadow filled Quilcayhuanca Valley. Only after visiting these higher elevations multiple times and feeling well acclimatized will we head south and begin our adventure around the Cordillera Huayhuash. Please see the detailed itinerary for the day to day runs and acclimatization plan.

  • 2016 Huayhuash Map

    Stage 1

    Llamac | Matacancha

    • 17.5 Miles/28km | 6,800′ Gain | 3,900′ Loss |
    • 2 Mountain Passes
    • 15,550′ Max Elevation | 13,650′ Camp Elevation

    Stage 2

    Matacancha | Laguna Carhuacocha

    • 12.5 Miles/20km | 3,500′ Gain | 3,500′ Loss
    • 2 Mountain Passes
    • 15,250′ Max Elevation | 13,600′ Camp Elevation

    Stage 3

    Laguna Carhuacocha | Viconga Hot Springs

    • 17 Miles/27km | 3,550′ Gain | 2,900′ Loss
    • 2 Mountain Passes
    • 15,750′ Max Elevation | 14,250′ Camp Elevation

    Stage 4

    Viconga Hot Springs | Huayllapa

    • 15 Miles/24km | 2,500′ Gain | 4,800′ Loss
    • 1 Mountain Pass
    • 16,500′ Max Elevation | 11,700′ Camp Elevation

    Stage 5

    Huayllapa | Laguna Jahuacocha

    • 13 Miles/21km | 5,250′ Gain | 3,600′ Loss
    • 2 Mountain Passes
    • 15,800′ Max Elevation | 13,300′ Camp Elevation

    Stage 6

    Laguna Jahuacocha | Llamac

    • 8 Miles/13km | 1,000′ Gain | 3,500′ Loss
    • 1 Mountain Pass
    • 14,000′ Max Elevation
  • 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 above Huaraz

    Today we will go for our first run and begin training our bodies at 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: 8 miles, 1,800′ Gain, 1800′ Loss

    Elevation: 10,000′ – 11,800′

    Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

    Day 4: Acclimatization Hike/Run to Laguna Churup

    Today we leave Huaraz for a few days to help our acclimatization by staying at a slightly higher elevation. We will travel above Huaraz to the base of the Cordillera Blanca 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

    Elevation: 12,700′ – 14,700′

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

    Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

    Day 5: Run Quebrada Quilcayhuanca

    Today will be our first long alpine valley run into Huascaran National Park and will no doubt be one of the running highlights of the trip. Quebrada Quilcayhuanca is a beautiful open river valley with soft grassy trails that you’ll enjoy all the way up to Laguna Tullpacocha at 14,000ft.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: 14 miles, 1,800′ Gain, 1,800′ Loss

    Elevation: 12,500′ – 14,100′

    Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner


    Day 6: Drive to Llamac

    Peru 2014 - 13786 (1)Today we will leave Huaraz and drive to the starting point of our adventure in the small Quechua village of Llamac. Once there you will have the rest of the day free to continue resting, go for a hike in the hills or take a run up the road. Whatever you choose be sure to be well rested to tomorrow… it’s a big day!

    Lodging: Llamac (10,700’)

    Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

    Day 7: Stage 1, Llamac to Matacancha

    With two high mountain pass crossings and a lot of vertical gain today will be one of the more difficult runs of the entire circuit.P1120879 copy Along with this, however, comes great views of the northern half of the mountain range and many miles of enjoyable down hill running.

    Camp: Matacancha (13,650’)

    Run: 17.5 miles, 6,800’ Gain, 3,900’ Loss

    Elevation: 10,700’ – 15,550’, 2 Mountain Passes

    Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 8: Stage 2, Matacancha 
to Laguna Carhuacocha

    Today’s run will again include two mountain passes but will be significantly shorter and easier.P1130022 copy Running on the eastern side of the Range includes many miles of great trails and and scenery that is sure to fill your camera. For tonight’s camp we will stop at the beautiful Laguna Carhuacocha.

    Camp: Laguna Carhuacocha (13,600’)

    Run: 12.5 miles, 3,500’ Gain, 3,500’ Loss

    Elevation: 13,600’ – 15,250’, 2 Mountain Passes

    Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 9: Stage 3, Laguna Carhuacocha to Viconga Hot Springs

    On today’s run we will continue our journey around the eastern side of the Range. We will start by running around the south side of Carhuacocha and head closer to the peaks and glaciers looming above.P1130076 Passing turquoise lakes, towering peaks and green pampas make this one of the most unforgettable stretches of the entire circuit. As a highlight we will be camping at the rejuvinating Viconga Hot Springs.

    Camp: Viconga Hot Springs (14,250’)

    Run: 17 miles, 3,550’ Gain, 2,900’ Loss

    Elevation: 13,600’ – 15,750’, 2 Mountain Passes

    Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 10: Stage 4, Viconga Hot Springs to Huayllapa

    Today’s run will cross the highest pass and will offer some of the best views. From the top of Cuyoc Pass, 16,400’, we will have some of our first views of the giant peaks on the western side of the Range as well as the Cordillera Raura to the south. Following a steep descent down the other side we will enjoy a long run down valley to the village of Huayllapa, our lowest elevation of the trip.P1130310 copy Tonight we will take a break from camping and spend the night in a bed and enjoy a hot shower!

    Lodging: Huayllapa (11,700’)

    Run: 15 miles, 2,500′ Gain, 4,800 Loss

    Elevation: 11,700′ – 16,500′, 1 Mountain Pass

    Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 11: Stage 5, Huayllapa to Laguna Jahuacocha

    From town the trail turns north and we will begin a long climb back up into the alpine towards Tapush Punta, 15,600’. Up high in the mountains again, we are greeted with new mountain views and the northwest side of the range.P1130400 copy After one more colorful pass we will run down valley to our final camp for the trip, Laguna Jahuacoch.

    Camp: Laguna Jahuacocha (13,300’)

    Run: 13 miles, 5,250’ Gain, 3,600’ Loss

    Elevation: 11,700’ – 15,800’, 2 Mountain Passes

    Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 12: Stage 6, Laguna Jahuacocha to Llamac

    Our final day will be one of the easier runs of the entire circuit. Leaving Jahuacocha we will retrace our steps down valley from Day 1 on a well used trail. After a few miles of enjoyable running we will begin the climb up and over Punta Llamac at 14,000’. This will be the final mountain pass crossing of the trip. From the pass we will take in the last views of the Cordillera Huayhuash and descend down to the town of Llamac and the end of our adventure. In Llamac we will take some time to relax, collect our gear and say goodbye to our new friends before we start our drive back to Huaraz.Huayhuash 2015 - 20699 Here we will check into our hotel for the night and go out for a celebratory group dinner.

    Lodging: La Casa de Zarela

    Run: 8 miles, 1,000’ Gain, 3,500’ Loss

    Elevation: 10,700’ – 14,000’, 1 Mountain Pass

    Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

    Day 13: Travel to Lima
/ Fly 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. We will plan to spend the day exploring Lima before your flight leaves and have a farewell dinner with those who are still around.

    Meals included: Breakfast

  • Lodging

    All lodging between our scheduled first and last nights in Lima is 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 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 views of the city and mountains from one of the many terraces or roof top patio.Peru 2014 - 12613

    During our initial acclimatization runs in Huascaran National Park we will be staying at the 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 the 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.


    P1130070 copyThis trip will have a total of four nights full service camping while in the Cordillera Huayhuash. All nights will be spent in established campsites along the trail in green, open meadows known as “pampas”. Most of these campsites have been chosen based on their extraordinary views of the mountains and surrounding scenery. One of the camping highlights of the Huayhuash Circuit is a night at the Viconga Hot Springs where we can soak our tired bodies in the rejuvenating hot spring pools next to the campsite. 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 environments 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.
    * Please note that this is a very unique trip with unique and difficult logistics. Please read the gear list carefully since it requires more than our normal trips.

  • Difficulty

    This adventure has advanced level runs with distances up to 17 miles, multiple mountain passes, high elevation gain, and altitudes up to 16,500’.
    P1130243 copyAlthough we do our best to help you prepare for higher elevations it is a know fact that everyone acclimatizes differently. With this in mind, know that running at these altitudes will still be challenging for all and you should not expect your body to perform as it does at home. Most 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 do during longer ultra-marathon races. Because of the beautiful scenery through out the trip 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?

    This stage run is designed for experienced mountain runners and we recommend it to those who have completed mountain races with high elevation gain in the past. Those wanting to join this trip should be familiar with days in the mountains and should expect to hike long sections of the trail everyday due to steep inclines, rough trails and high altitude.

    P1120936 copy*Although Highline Running Adventures caters to most ability levels, most runners will find our Peru Adventures to be slightly 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 will have an 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 in country flights and airport transfers
    • All lodging at choice hotels and lodges
    • Most breakfasts and dinners, and some lunches (See itinerary for what meals are included)
    • All gear transport, arrieros, burros and/or llamas
    • All group camping equipment
    • All camp food, camp cooks and other camp staff
    • All National Park and local area 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 or rentals


    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 number of 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.