If you are planning to travel to Salkantay here you will find some recommendations you need to know.
When to travel?
The best time to do this trek is during dry season, that is, between may and october. May is the most recommended time of the year and the reason is that everything is still verdant after the end of the rainy season. On the other hand, june is the coldest time of the year, and for instance, not so nice.
What to take?
First of all, your daypack, besides the bag the horse will carry, and as a minimum a -5 °C (23 Fahrenheit) sleeping bag. The clothing must be appropriate for the mid-high mountain weather, which is hot during the day and very cold during the night. To keep your clothes organized, we recommend to bring 3 bags, for clean, dirty, and wet. Do not forget your personal toiletry for the 4-day trekking (towel, soap, toothbrush/paste, toilet paper, etc). The more products with natural or biodegradable components the better. Bring the necessary medicines, considering headaches and high-elevation sickness among the main discomforts. Also, some bandages for wounds or blisters. It is very important to bring your flashlight, specially for the last day when the trek starts at 4:00 am. If you are willing to visit rural communities, it would be a nice gesture to bring school items to offer as gifts or donations. A fully charged camera, sun glasses, hat and sunblock are a must.
How to avoid high elevation sickness?
It is important to acclimatize before starting the trek, arriving in Cusco 2 or 3 days in advance. High elevation pills also help and are commonly used among visitors. Keep your body well hydrated, coca leaves infusion is recommended. A light diet is very important, consisting of easy digestion food, like creams or soups, fruits and vegetables, yogurt and carbs but under no circumstance fatty or fried meals. Sleep long, keep yourself warm, and do not forget to eat before being hungry, to drink before being thirsty, and to rest before being tired.
During the whole trek you will travel with experienced guides well capacitated to assist you under any circumstance. Make all the questions you want to make sure you are prepared and to have the best experience during your trek to Salkantay!
PHOTO CREDITS: Salkantay Trek by Yochus via Flickr