Machu Picchu Lodge Trek Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is the weight limit for luggage/clothing/equipment that each traveler can take on the trek?
A: THE WEIGHT LIMIT FOR THE TREK IS 15KG / 35 LBS PER GUEST, AS THIS IS THE MAXIMUM WEIGHT THAT MULES AND PORTERS CAN CARRY. IT IS ALSO IMPORTANT TO NOTE THAT 'HARD' LUGGAGE POSES A PROBLEM; SOFT, 'DUFFEL-BAG' TYPE LUGGAGE IS RECOMMENDED.
Peru Rail, the company that operates the trains from Aguas Calientes/Machu Picchu to Cusco, instated on July 9, 2008 a new weight limit for all luggage coming on board the trains.
The new weight limits from Peru Rail (and thus for the trek) are as follows:
1 backpack – 11 lbs / 5 kg (per person, which guests carry with them on the train)
1 duffel bag – 22 lbs / 10 kg (per person, which goes on a separate cargo train)
Anything over this weight limit, Peru Rail will charge guests directly at the train station in Aguas Calientes (Rate: US$0.82 per pound extra or US$1.80 per kg extra).
If your luggage exceeds the weight limit, please note that your luggage will be on board a separate cargo train from Aguas Calientes/Machu Picchu to Cusco. This means your luggage will not travel with you on this portion of the trip. Therefore, on Day 7 before you depart for Machu Picchu, will be the last time you see your luggage until you return to your Cusco hotel that evening. If you wish to have a change of clothes or anything else you may want with you that day, please pack it in your backpack that morning.
Q: What should guests do with their remaining bags and clothing?
A: REMAINING LUGGAGE CAN BE STORED IN CUSCO AT YOUR PRE-TREK HOTEL.
Q: How is luggage transported from lodge to lodge? Is it with us at all times?
A: GUESTS SHOULD CARRY A DAY-PACK WITH THEM WITH EVERYTHING THEY NEED FOR THE DAY. MULES AND PORTERS CARRYING THE LUGGAGE WILL NOT WALK WITH THE GROUP. YOUR LUGGAGE WILL MEET YOU UPON AT ARRIVAL AT EACH LODGE.
Q: What is the weather like on the Salkantay trek during the year?
A: WEATHER IN THE REGION IS EXTREMELY VARIABLE AND YOU SHOULD PACK FOR A VARIETY OF CONDITIONS. IN ADDITION, OUR TREK PASSES THROUGH 12 BIO-ZONES RANGING FROM HIGH ALTITUDE ALPINE CONDITIONS TO HIGH JUNGLE.
Q: How many guides will be with the group on the trek?
A: WE WORK WITH ONE GUIDE FOR GROUPS UP TO 7 TRAVELERS. FOR GROUPS OF 8 TO 14 WE HAVE AN ASSISTANT GUIDE. HOWEVER, THE COOKS AND THE HORSEMEN KNOW THE AREA AND THE TREK VERY WELL AND ARE ABLE TO ASSIST THE GUIDES AT ALL TIMES; EVEN IN CASES OF EMERGENCY EVACUATION.
Q: What kind of emergency procedures are in place if a guest injures themselves in a way that disables them from continuing the trek (i.e. falls and breaks a leg)? What is the nearest hospital and how can they get there? Can the rest of the group continue without them or must they all turn around?
A: THERE IS BASIC MEDICAL EQUIPMENT AND ATTENTION AT THE LODGES; THE PERSONNEL TRAVELING WITH THE GROUP ARE TRAINED TO HANDLE EMERGENCIES. WE ALSO WORK WITH A MEDICAL HELICOPTER RESCUE OPERATION FOR EMERGENCIES. FOR MINOR MEDICAL ATTENTION THAT CANNOT BE TAKEN CARE OF AT THE LODGES BUT WHICH REQUIRE SPECIAL MEDICAL ATTENTION, THE NEAREST MEDICAL CENTERS, IN THE WORST CASE, ARE ONE DAY DISTANCE BY HORSE OR MULE. GUIDES CARRY FULL FIRST AID KIT AND PORTABLE OXYGEN WITH THEM AT ALL TIMES.
Q: Do the guides have naturalist training of any kind?
A: WE WORK WITH THE BEST GUIDES IN CUSCO. WE WILL HAVE SPECIALIST GUIDES AVAILABLE ON REQUEST (BIRD SPECIALISTS, HISTORY SPECIALISTS, ETC.)
Q: Do clients carry their lunch food in their daypacks?
A: ON DAYS 3, 5, AND 6, WHICH CALL FOR A PICNIC LUNCH EN ROUTE, LUNCH WILL BE PREPARED FRESH ON-SITE BY THE COOKS AND WILL CONSIST OF HOT SOUP, GOURMET SANDWICHES OR A HOT LUNCH, SNACKS AND SALADS. ADDITIONALLY, GUESTS WILL BE HANDED A ¨SNACK-PACK¨ TO CARRY IN THEIR DAY PACKS WITH DRY FRUITS, PEANUTS, CHOCOLATES AND FRESH FRUITS.
Q: What is the electrical current found at the lodges if a guest wants to use their own electrical appliances?
A: THE LODGES HAVE AN ELECTRICAL CURRENT OF 220 VOLTS. IF GUESTS HAVE ELECTRICAL APPLIANCES THAT WORK WITH 110 VOLTS, THEY SHOULD BRING THEIR OWN ADAPTORS SINCE THERE ARE IS A LIMITED SUPPLY OF THESE IN THE LODGES FOR THEIR USE.
Q: What is the terrain like? How challenging is it?
A: THE TREK IS RATED AS MODERATE TO CHALLENGING AND COVERS APPROXIMATELY 32 MILES ON UNEVEN, ROCKY TERRAIN. DAY 3 IS THE MOST CHALLENGING WITH AN ELEVATION GAIN OF 3,000 FEET IN A SPAN OF 3 MILES TO REACH A MAXIMUM ALTITUDE OF 15,000 FEET. PRIOR HIKING EXPERIENCE IS RECOMMENDED AS THIS IS NOT A NOVICE HIKE. PLEASE CONTACT US IF YOU HAVE ANY OTHER QUESTIONS.