We present another experience in other trek to Machu Picchu that you can enjoy and travel.
And starts like this:
"Are you ready for the Lares trek?” asked Edwin, our guide and life saver for the days ahead. Beneath the enthusiastic demeanour was a hint of worry. Well, he had every reason to be worried. We were no outdoorsy group, but a family of 4 consisting of a 61 year old dad, a 58 year old mom and 2 young and lazy city dwellers whose idea of ‘pushing our bodies’ limits’ simply means staying up till 3 a.m and darting our eyeballs over a 13-inch screen. So, what on Earth were we doing here? Well, I think the Incan Gods wanted to give us a shove into the great wilderness and thought we looked endearing stumbling through high altitudes one minute and gushing over unadulterated beauty the next. The Lares Trek is often seen as a scenic alternative trek for those who couldn’t get the limited permits to trek the Inca Trail due to their lack of foresight and a chronic habit of procrastination. (Excuse me while I smile coyly at the floor) Though Google suggests that the Lares Trek is easier, Edwin the guide insists that it is in fact more challenging and higher in altitude at 4400m above sea level. I have a feeling that he wanted to make us feel better about our sorry state, but I guess the only way to find out is to hike the Inca Trail. After having survived an adventure of a lifetime, I dare say that the Lares Trek is greatly underrated. The sheer isolation (that can never be experienced on the Inca Trail) and the beauty that assaulted our senses were simply far beyond what I could imagine.
The first day of the trek had us walking in the valley and meeting the cutest animals in the world-llamas, alpacas, sheep and handsome mountain dogs. We crossed little streams and were awed by the sheer strength of the villagers who lived in a rather difficult environment. Did I just see a woman in a full skirt and sandals grab a llama in one arm and walk along a steep hill?. Yes I did, and my North Face gear and I wilted in shame. As night fell, all that was between us and the freezing cold, the Milky Way, and aliens was the tent put together by our amazing trekking crew who must have attained enlightenment numerous times while waiting for us to arrive at camp. And imagine waking up to sheep and llamas walking by in great haste as you sip coca tea and wonder if you’d fall victim to Altitude Sickness. I escaped while my mom and brother battled with dizziness and breathlessness. But I’m glad we made it, for the second day was a day I’d never forget.
As we crawled our way up steeper slopes, past numerous lakes and inched our way closer to the glaciers, the Gods decided to press the buttons on Hailstorm and Strong Winds for some added flavour, right at the top of a 4400 m mountain pass. With ponchos barely standing against the gusts of wind and hailstones attacking our faces in a frenzy, there was a moment where I could do nothing but be in the moment, breathe, and put one foot in front of another.
At the end of the day, as they say, everything will be alright. When the sun decided to grace itself once more, peeping behind the glaciers and illuminating the emerald lake, I got reminded again that this was the reason I was here. To be awestruck, to be tested, to be humbled, and then to be rewarded with the littlest gestures from Mother Earth. There is a great world that exists beyond the 13-inch screen.
We arrived on the third day at the Lares hot springs where we soaked our muscles to bliss before the drive to Ollantaytambo and a short train ride to Aguas Caliente, the town of Machu Picchu. While the Inca Trail is the only trail where you arrive in Machu Picchu by foot, the Lares Trek was an authentic and off the beaten path to the home of the lost civilization. And what a sight to behold, Machu Picchu!
Practical Information about The Lares Trek: Trekking Company We did our trek with Enigma, a fantabulous adventure trekking company who made sure we were in great hands. It’s slightly pricier than other companies, but you get what you pay for. Imagine having fresh food at the end of the day prepared by the chef, not instant soup.