Arequipa to Cusco
23.10.2016 - 23.10.2016
It was another early start, we left our hotel in Arequipa at 6:30 a.m. for a short drive to the local airport. The flight left shortly after 9 and we were in Cusco thirty minutes later. There were only a few clouds in the sky and we had a great view of the mountains surrounding Cusco and of the city itself. The city is much larger than I expected.
Our rooms weren't ready, so our guide took us on a brief walk around one small area, then we went for breakfast. When we stepped outside, clouds had moved in and it had started to rain. Apparently this is what we can expect on the trek - clear skies and then rain, all within a very short period of time.
We had our first meeting to discuss some of the logistics related to our hike on the Lares Trek. G Adventures offers a deal if you rent a sleeping bag, air mattress and walking poles, S/.110 (I think I have finally mastered the symbol for Peruvian money). Our guide reassured us that because it is spring, the temperature at night will only go as low as 10 degrees, hopefully he is correct.
At 5:00 we met at the G Adventures headquarters in Cusco for our final briefing. There are ten members from our group doing the Lares Trek and our group met with Joel, the man who will be leading us on the trek. Joel explained the route we would be traveling, including the distance we will go and the elevation we will travel each day. He told us about the cooks who will be preparing our meals, the types of toilets we can expect to find and ways to avoid altitude sickness. Joel answered all of our questions and after the hour long session, I felt more reassured about the trek.
In general I have felt relatively healthy, although I have had a few headaches. Although I don't like to take aspirin, I have taken a few tablets and the headaches have gone away. Hopefully as I become more accustomed to the altitude, I won't get any more headaches.
After dinner we walked back to our hotel and saw Cusco by night, it is very pretty. Our daytime walking tour was postponed because it poured rain all afternoon. We will do the tour when we return from the trek.
Our final job for the evening was to pack our duffle bag, the bag that will be going on the trek with us. We don't have to carry this bag, or our sleeping bag and air mattress as the porters do that for us. We have to pack less than 8 kg and the sleeping bag and mattress weight 2.5 kg. I'm pretty sure I've packed less.
I'm nervous and excited to do the hike.