Although Huchuy Picchu may not be a very famous name, it may well be one of the most photographed peaks in the world. Huchuy Picchu is the pinnacle that is dwarfed by its more known neighbor, Huayna Picchu
, and is adjacent to the beautiful ruins of Machu Picchu, the "Lost City of the Incas". Huchuy Picchu can be seen most descriptively as "the little Huayna Picchu" when seen from the classical aspect of the ruins. Many hikers pass right under Huchuy Picchu on their way to summit Huayna Picchu, yet Huchuy Picchu receives a significantly low amount of people who summit it. From the summit, awesome views of Machu Picchu can be had, as well as great views of the surrounding forested peaks in the area. A short, class 2 trail splits off from the Huayna Picchu trail and brings you to the summit in about 10 minutes. It is a nice side trip to make either on the way up or on the way down from Huayna Picchu. The empty trail is also a nice alternative from the very crowded Huayna Picchu trail. The trail ascends next to ancient terraces and up a short class 2 slab. Summiting Huchuy Picchu is a very nice add-on on a visit to Machu Picchu.
Huchuy Picchu from the Huayna Picchu Trail
Sign on the Ridge
Getting to Huchuy Picchu means first getting to Machu Picchu, which is usually done by taking the train from the town of Ollantaytambo, Peru to Aguas Calientes. Getting to Ollantaytambo can be done either by train, car, or bus from Cusco. From Aguas Calientes, catch one of the many buses up to the ruins of Machu Picchu. Pay the fee and walk to the entrance of the Huayna Picchu trail. This is located at the north end of the ruins. You can't miss it, as there are many signs in the ruins that point to "Wayna Picchu", which is the same thing as Huayna Picchu. Sign in at the entrance hut and continue on the trail. Within 5 minutes time, you will see a trail leave left and a sign that points you to Huchuy Picchu. Take the trail. It ascends quickly and deposits you on the ridge, next to some terraces. Then the trail wraps south around the summit, ascending a class 2 slab with a fixed rope. After that the trail goes straight to the summit. Time from the start to the summit of the trail is 10-15 minutes. Cerro Machu Picchu
can also be bagged in the same day with Huchuy and Huayna.
Class 2 section of trail
The only fees you have to pay are the entrance to Machu Picchu, which is around $20 US, and the $6 US bus ticket if you so choose.
You must begin the hike by 1 PM. Period.
The guys in the entrance hut will not let anyone pass after 1 PM. There is also a 400 capacity on the trail, so starting earlier will increase your chances of not getting turned back. I started on the trail around 9:30 AM and was only the 169th person to sign in that day. There are no fees for signing in to hike the trail to Huchuy or Huayna Picchu. You are not allowed to stay up there after dark. Check what the last bus ride is down to Aguas Calientes, posted at the bus stop at the entrance to Machu Picchu.
Camping is not allowed in Machu Picchu. There is a hotel at the entrance of Machu Picchu, a camp ground at the bottom of the Hiram Bingham Road, and there are many hotels in the town of Aguas Calientes.
entry on Machu Picchu, just to get familiar.