GPS Track Details
Difficulty: 2/5 - Easy
Track length: 10.83 Kilometers
Total Ascent: 224 Meters
Total Descent: 365 Meters

C-3.0  Cararango pass - El Chaupi - Canal Cucanama

Distance          10.8 km

Time                3.0 hours

Altitude          1490m - 1775m

Ascent             180m

Descent           315m

Rating             Easy

Start                Cararango pass (1775m)

End                  Vilcabamba tourist office

This is an easy, mostly downhill hike into the river Vilcabamba-Valley and back via irrigation Canal to Vilcabamba.

Route: To get to the trailhead, take the “Vilcabambatouris”-bus ($ 0.50) or a taxi to the Shrine on the Cararango-pass (Between Vilcabamba-valley and Malacatos). From there, pass the little Cararango-church and start descending, following the blue bike-downhill-sign. Passing through many little fruit-orchards and open eucalyptus-forests, the nice, compact village San Pedro de Vilcabamba comes into view way below on your left. After 1.5 km, take the road turning off to the right. (Going straight takes you back to the main road above Vilcabamba). Follow this road down to the Junction of the Vilcabamba- San Joaquin-Road near Hostería Madre Tierra, and turn right again. (Depending on the hour of the day, the San Joaquin-Road might have some dusty traffic bypassing you). Passing sugarcane fields and scattered houses and the Dominican cloister “Puerta del Cielo”, you’ll reach the hamlet of el Chaupi and the entrance of the gated Hacienda San Joaquin ( Head down left to the Vilcabamba-River, cross the suspension-bridge and ascend 300 meters to the Vilcabamba-Linderos road. Right across the road you’ll find a barbed wire-gate to the ascending trail, which ascends 800m uphill to the irrigation canal. (This canal originates at the Capamaco valley, some 12 kilometers from this point and irrigates much of the area of San Jose, Cuba Libre, los Huilcos and the left hand side of the Rio Vilcabamba-Valley and presents sort of a live line for these parts in the dry period).

Following the Canal to your left, the almost level trail follows the lower reaches of the Mandango massif, with fine views of the Vilcabamba-river-Valley, later on Vilcabamba-Town itself. Approaching Vilcabamba near the Ceremonial Pyramid, you’ll find an unmarked short cut to your left, heading down to the center of town. If you miss that, then you get to the dirt road-extension of calle Juan Montalvo, which also gets you back into town.           


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