This is a review of my day trip hiking Humantay Lake with FlashPacker Connect.
Hiking Humantay Lake:
I had a different tour guide this time hiking Humantay Lake with Flashpacker Connect. Our Flashpacker Connect guide’s name was Jacob and his brother was our driver!
Today’s hiking Humantay Lake tour with Flashpacker Connect was only two of us. I don’t know about you but the smaller, the better. Flashpacker Connect has a usual 8 person maximum on a group tour so don’t fret.
The day started off at 4 AM, a far cry from 2:30 am for Rainbow Mountain. It was about a two-hour drive to get to the base of the hike which is also the beginning of the Salkantay Trek.
After the two hour drive, we set up camp. When I say camp, Jacob, our driver, and cook all help to set up a tent with a mini stove, breakfast, and lunch is prepared! Breakfast takes an hour or so to prepare and when you walk into the tent, it’s toasty warm and cozy. Breakfast is western-style and pretty simple. It’s the usual crepes, fruit, and tea, or coffee. You’re set off with a bag of snacks though!
After the hike, you are welcomed back into the fold with a hot lunch. As always, the food again was delicious and plentiful. It may have been too much!
Actually Hiking Humantay Lake:
The altitude kicks your ass. The hike itself doesn’t look very steep but it’s continuously uphill. I’m probably also in bad physical shape but I didn’t feel too bad since our little trio ended up passing two other large groups ahead of us and even after many thirty-seconds breaks to catch my breath, we were still the very first ones to get to the lake!
I recommend a hiking stick – at least one. Some people use to but I think one makes it more comfortable. The guide will have oxygen with us – just in case, it’s needed. Bring plenty of water and take your time. If you can only walk three steps and need to rest, do so. I was the slowest person by far but we somehow were the first group up there!
The air was so dry and thin that I also got a bit of a bloody nose and was really glad I had packed extra tissues for the bathroom but also, just in case, your nose starts to bleed.
The hike is dominated by Salkantay Peak, one of Peru’s most sacred mountains, towering 20,600 feet with a sheer and snowy face (most of the time).
Humantay Lake is gorgeous – with shades of green, brown, and blue. However, the effects of climate change are apparent. Humantay Lake is not as large, not as deep, and the guides have told us that there are less snow and warmer every year. Global warming – you suck. People suck. We need to really get back on the horse and make sure Planet Earth 3 can come out on DVD.
Don’t stack rocks and leave them up for others to find. If it is for your photo, take the photo, and then put the rocks back down for other people to at least feel like they’re getting to see nature unspoiled.
Do not undress and dip into the water. Swimming is forbidden and the tour guides are pretty strict about it. After taking a few photos and enjoying the view, you make the descent hiking back down for lunch.
On the way back, hiking Humantay Lake is all downhill. It may sound easier (it is) but if you have bad knees like I do, you’ll be glad for a walking stick. If you’re not careful or don’t have the right trees, you’ll easily find yourself descending much slower than others. Take your time and breathe.
Lunch with Flashpacker Connect
Lunch was prepared and piping hot and ready for us when we made it back to camp. There are fresh juice and water available. The various dishes probably change but just know there is plenty of food (hot and cold) for everybody.
After lunch, it’s time to get back in the van. Don’t be like others and immediately pass out! The drive out of the mountain area is beautiful and I was able to capture many scenic photos along the windy roads. After you get back on the highway, then feel free to curl up and pass out for the 2.5-3 hour drive back.
I totally recommend day tours and hikes with Flashpacker Connect. If you want to specifically hike Humantay Lake, book with Flashpacker Connect because you go early and groups are smaller. There does need to be a two-person minimum though. I was the first one signed up for a while and luckily, we had one other person sign up the day before and we were set.