machu picchu – worth every aching moment
Seeing the iconic site of Machu Picchu is on so many travel ‘bucket lists’, and for good reason. But the 4-day trek at high altitude is no walk in the park, so Intrepid’s Dyan Mckie couldn’t wait to tell her mum that she made it all the way…
“We set off to take the Inca Trail in our stride; our Intrepid group of 11 plus local leader, Ernie, and great team of porters. The trek took us over passes as high as 4,000 metres – Dead Woman’s Pass is the highest and believe me, you feel like a less-than-lively lady when you finally reach the summit. I won’t kid you, it was hard work for a desk-bound girl like myself. Uphill all the way and when my lungs weren’t screaming, my legs were!
The trail itself wound through the mountains, which were an amazing backdrop – misty one minute and draped in a warm glow the next. Ilamas were spotted grazing on the lower grass lands whilst eagles flew overhead, it was spectacular and I had to remind myself to also watch where I was walking.
I am happy to say everyone in our group finished the trail (including Frank and Elfrida from Canada, two very fit and active 60+ year olds who were truly an inspiration to us ‘young-uns’). Once the clouds slowly unveiled Machu Picchu – the view left me awestruck and made the past 4 days worth every aching moment!
I can’t believe I made it, but I’m so glad I did. Machu Picchu is definitely up there with my other favorite places in the world – the Taj Mahal, Saint Basils in Red Square and Abu Simbel in Egypt. Peru has so much to offer – the Amazon, Lake Titicaca, the High Andes and of course the Inca Trail!”
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* photo by Beishan Sun – Intrepid Photography Competition