Exploring New Trails in the Andes of Lima

Aug 17, 2009
Peru, South America
By now I think everybody knows where is Peru and what has to offer for mountain bikers. We have appeared in several cable tv programs and written magazines showing one of the best riding in the world. Our last article was in Bike Mag July 2011, go get yours!

This is the second time I ride these trails and I cant stop to be surprised about the quality of the trails and how close to Lima and the other trails they are. This place is just a bit ahead from the Olleros trail, a super long descent of 3,800m of vertical drop in 55Km.

View of the glaciers from top of the trail.

We have been searching the maps and looking for the trails in that area, close to important glaciers like the Pariacaca with 5,734m. We were looking specifically for the Main Inca trail that comes from Cusco to Pachacamac in Lima. This important trail comes from Cusco, goes just on a side of the Pariacaca where the Incas used to make some offerings to the mountain and then it continues crossing mountains and finally descends to Pachacamac.

So, the first day we started riding at 4,150m traversing the Andes and following this amazing Inca trail. The area is covered with rock formations making crazy figures carved by thousands of years of erosion. The Inca trail goes following little creeks and also big flat surfaces. In some rough sections the Incas had to build the trail cutting the rocks and putting them like bricks making an amazing and smooth trail. We rode for around 4 hours above 4,200m (13,780ft.) and finally we reached the start of the descend. Now comes the downhill section. We passed amazing sites like the Puyas de Raimondi garden, an old Inca bridge and also we had to make our own trail to descend the mountain and finally reach Huarochiri, a small village in the valley of the same name.

The Inca trail that comes from Cusco to Pachacamac!

Another view of this amazing trail.

A stop on the trail. Those rock piles means that we are on the trail. It also means a place where other trails meet. You have to look around!

Slick Rock!

Amazing scenery! Cool to be where nobody else is.

The Inca trail almost disappeared but we always find the singletrack!

Puya Raymondi, a native plant that grows above 4,000m.

This is real free riding!

View of Huarochiri

Another view of this beautiful town.

On our second day of riding in this amazing place, we visited different little villages in this big valley and rode the Inca trails that are everywhere! We passed by amazing places and saw the old way of farming the land with terraces in the mountains. Local people still farm those Inca terraces and they put alive all the Inca heritage. It's nice to see an old lady with around 80 years old moving her cattle on the trail and when we stopped to say hi, she started to ask us why we ride our bikes on this trail, we are crazy people because we have the new road (for motorized vehicles). We just said that we like the adventure and to have moments like this talking to a happy local. Then we continued our ride crossing two more villages and we finally reached the end of the trail for that day.

Inca trail on the second day.

Some rocky sections on the Inca trail.

This trail has hundreds or maybe thousands of years old!

Fast and flowy

Not so stable bridge to cross

Beautiful landscape of the valley

Hard stuff!

Nothing better than riding in this remote place

Very old tree, around 500 years old.

With the old lady and her donkey.

Impressive trail

Nice job!

At night we had a delicious bbq and lots of wine. We couldn't stop talking about the great trails we just rode!

Our food.

Hungry, tired but very happy!

Inca Terraces

On the road

The third day we returned to the coast riding the Olleros trail. This trail starts at 3,500m and goes following the shape of the mountains until we reach the Pacific Ocean!! It's a 55Km long and 3,800m accumulated descent that probably is the biggest descend in the world!

Trail to Santo Domingo de los Olleros

The party is in town! We have to stay and drink some beer haha!

After a few drinks, we had to continue riding our bikes!

Close to the beach in this lunar landscape.

The bottom of the riverbed. Remember the cover shot of Bike Mag July 2011?

We didn´t stop riding until we reached the ocean.