GPS Track Details
Difficulty: 3/5 - Medium
Track length: 127.83 Kilometers
Total Ascent: 3871 Meters
Total Descent: 3863 Meters

C-2  Loop Vilcabamba - Purunuma - Quilanga - Gonzanama – Vilcabamba


Distance                     127.5 km

Time                           6.5 hours

Altitude min/max     1330 m – 2685 m

Ascent                        3580 m

Descent                      3575 m

Rating                         Medium 3/5 (mostly gravel roads)

Start                           Vilcabamba tourist office

End                             Vilcabamba tourist office

The first part of this loop consists of the access route to the Plaza del Inca via Malacatos Purunuma, but then branches towards the picturesque town of Quilanga. Between Quilanga & Gonzanama, you find the site of the Petroglyphs Anganuma, testimonials of a pre Inca culture. Gonzanama is a sizeable town in the center of an agricultural plateau. Via the Cerro Colambo-pass at 2680 m, you close the loop at Purunuma and return by the access route.  

Route:             Follow the Loja-highway to the north across the Cararango-pass to Malacatos. In Malacatos turn left at the second traffic light onto the Malacatos-Catamayo road. Past Malacatos you pass the Barrio Ceibopamba and the new leisure park Vista Bella. At km 17 from Vilcabamba, leave the sealed road and turn left onto the gravel road to Purunuma. Descend 4.5 km to the Rio Catamayo, cross the river, then a 16 km climb past the Barrio Chiquil brings you up to the pass & Shrine Huacaca at 2’335 m. 2.5 km later, you reach the secluded town of Purunuma. At the hillside end of the town, turn left. (Don’t follow the Gonzanama-road). 8 km out of Purunuma, past Eucalyptus forests pastures and small farms, you reach  an intersection. The left branch leads to the Plaza del Inca, but we take the right branch down to the town of Quilanga. 3.5 km after the Intersection, you pass a small waterfall on your right. Quilanga still preserves the charm of a laid back country town even though it’s now accessed by a sealed road from Gonzanama and Ingenio. We continue our loop uphill towards Gonzanama. 3 km out of Quilanga, we pass the entrance to the pre Inca site of the Petroglyphs Anganuma, a site well worth visiting. Another 14 kilometers along this sealed highway gets us to the town of Gonzanama. After sightseeing in Gonzanama, we leave town on a gravelroad eastwards, climbing 500 m to Cerro Colambo pass, at 2680 m the highest point of our trip. From here, you could do the 2 km side trip to Cerro Colambo, the hill with a bunch of antennas at 3100 m. 6 km down from the pass, we’re back in Purunuma and well known territory.





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