The Salkantay trek is a route that includes the journey through different geographical areas, from the high Andean mountains to the high jungle of Cusco. On the way, very different tourist attractions are visited, such as the Humantay Lagoon and Machu Picchu. In each of these places, there is a different temperature that can vary from 0 ° C. to 24 ° C. Learn in detail what the weather is like on this incredible hiking route!
How is the weather on the Salkantay trek route?
The Salkantay trek is a hiking route that in its five days and 70 kilometers of the trek it crosses different altitudinal floors: from 2,040 meters of altitude to 4,600 meters of elevation.
That is, during the hiking route you feel different climates and temperatures. The maximum temperature is in the town of Aguas Calientes (24°C. on average). The minimum temperature is in the Salkantay pass (approximately 0°C).
During the walk, the average temperature oscillates between 10°C. and 16°C. The climate is temperate with cold and mild nights. The days are hot especially the first night. The rainy season is from November to March (especially in January, February, and March). The dry season (with little rain) runs from April to October.
The weather on the first day of the tour
On the first day of the Salkantay trek departs from Cusco to the town of Mollepata (2,803 masl). In the vicinity of this town begins the walk that ascends to the Soraypampa camp (3,900 masl). In the afternoon we visit the Humantay Lagoon, located at 4,200 meters above sea level. After a walk through the snowy peak, we will arrive at the town of Soraypampa where we will spend the night.
- How’s the weather? – The weather that day is temperate – cold with temperatures ranging between 14°C. and 2°C. (at night). The average temperature on the walk is 10°C. It is recommended to bring warm clothes to spend the night in.
The weather on the second day of the tour
The second day of the Salkantay trek begins at the Soraypampa camp (3,900 masl). From there, an arduous ascent is made to the Salkantay Pass, at 4,600 meters above sea level. There you have spectacular views of the snow-capped mountain as it is the closest trail to the town.
Then there is a constant descent until reaching the Chaullay camp, located at 4,045 meters above sea level. There he spends the night.
- How’s the weather? – The weather that day is also temperate – cold with temperatures ranging between 15°C. and 6°C. (at night). The average temperature on the walk is 10°C. It is recommended to bring warm clothes in the morning, during the trek through the Salkantay pass, it will be possible to wear light clothes until late in the afternoon. During the night in the Chaullay camp, a jacket will be effective to combat the cold.
The weather on the third day of the tour
The third day of the Salkantay trek begins with a downhill walk from Chaullay until entering the high jungle region of Cusco as the Sahuayaco beach (2,200 masl). Then an additional walk is carried out until reaching the Lucmabamba camp (2,062 masl), tropical geography where mosquitoes abound, mountains with abundant vegetation, and beautiful landscapes.
- How’s the weather? – The weather on the third day is tropical temperate with temperatures ranging between 15°C. and 22°C. The average temperature on the walk is 18°C. That day it is advisable to bring light clothing, a hat, sunscreen, and mosquito repellent.
The weather on the fourth day of the tour
The fourth day of the Salkantay trek begins with an arduous walk through ascending Inca roads until arriving at the archaeological site of Llactapata (2,840 masl). Then a vertiginous descent is made to the famous Hydroelectric station (1,550 masl).
In Hidroeléctrica, after lunch and rest, the famous walk is made to the town of Aguas Calientes (2,160 masl). In this magical place you spend the night, but this time in a tourist hotel in the town.
- How’s the weather? – The weather on the fourth day of the tour is tropical – hot with temperatures ranging between 18°C. and 24°C. The average temperature on the walk is 21°C. That day it is also recommended to wear light change clothes and wear a hat because, even if it seems cloudy, the sun will still be present. Therefore, also use sunscreen and mosquito repellents.
The weather on the fifth day of the tour
On the fifth day of the Salkantay trek, the final hike up from the town of Aguas Calientes to the archaeological site of Machu Picchu (2,490 masl) is carried out. Optionally, tourists can buy a bus ticket and avoid the walk (approximately 2 hours).
After visiting Machu Picchu, we descend to Aguas Calientes where we board the tourist train that will take us to the city of Cusco (3,399 masl).
- How’s the weather? – The weather on the fifth day of the tour is also tropical with temperatures ranging from 16°C. up to 24°C. The average temperature on the walk is 23°C. It is recommended to bring light clothing (a light jacket), a hat, sunscreen, mosquito repellent, and, of course, your passport and entrance to Machu Picchu.
During this walk, you will appreciate a great variety of fauna. Some cases were reported where they visualized the flight of condors, although this is not exclusively, for many it is just a rumor. However, we will be able to meet the peregrine falcon and some other smaller but equally beautiful birds. We can see the most striking ones as we get closer to Machu Picchu.
Questions and answers about the weather on the Salkantay trek
1. What is the maximum altitude on the Salkantay trek?
The Salkantay pass is the highest point of the entire adventure. This pass near the snow peak reaches an altitude of 4,600 meters above sea level.
2. What is the minimum altitude on the Salkantay tour?
The minimum altitude on the Salkantay trek tour is at the Hydroelectric station (the point where you will have lunch on day 4 of the tour). There the altitude is 1,550 meters above sea level.
3. What is the maximum temperature?
The maximum temperature on the Salkantay trek tour is on the fourth day of the tour. In the Hydroelectric station, the temperature can reach 24°C. (and a minimum temperature of approximately 17°C).
4. And what is the minimum temperature?
The minimum temperature on the Salkantay trek tour is on the first night of the tour, at the Soraypampa camp. There the temperature can drop to 0°C., or even less.
5. What clothes should I take to the Salkantay trek?
During the Salkantay trek, it is recommended to wear warm clothing for the first night and light clothing for the rest of the days. It is always advisable to bring a windbreaker jacket, a poncho in case of rain, sunglasses, a hat, leggings, shorts, cotton socks, and whatever you consider necessary.
6. When is the best weather to do the Salkantay trek?
It is recommended to do the tour from April to October. In those months it is the dry season. Therefore, there are few spots of rain, which facilitates the walk.
7. When is the worst weather to do this hiking trail?
It is believed that the rainy season is the worst time to do the Salkantay trek. However, in those months the landscapes become greener. Of course, it is recommended to bring a rain poncho and waterproof clothing. January, February, and March are the rainiest months of the year.v
8. Is it very cold on the Salkantay trek?
The cold on the Salkantay trek is intense only on the first night in the Soraypampa camp (with temperatures that can drop to 0°C.). The second day is also cold until you reach the famous Salkantay pass (with temperatures of approximately 2°C).
By Inca Trail Machu Picchu - Last updated, 13-04-2023
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