Montana Colorada – or “Rainbow Mountain in Peru” or, if you prefer – “Mountain of Seven Colors” (and seriously it is 6, but 7 sounds better – confirmed info) in Peru, is one of the must-see points of our trip. This is the second phenomenal attraction of Peru after Machu Picchu, which was formed by melting glaciers that discovered minerals on the surface of the mountains. The phenomenon that took place there meant that on the tops of the mountain we have a series of colors, like sand in a souvenir from Kołobrzeg, only on a larger scale and nothing falls apart.
The machu Picchu brawl
After returning from Machu Picchu, we made a little fuss to our agent who served us. All in all, it was not her fault what happened there, but we had to inform her about the lack of organization on the road to Santa Teresa, because on the first day, the guides got confused and left us on the road, which we do not know where it was supposed to end. We walked blindly and everyone said something different, that 40 minutes, that 2 hours. It was not known whether we had to turn somewhere, because the guide drove his car to the city and waited for us to get to it ourselves.
Coming back, I also do not understand how they could organize transport to take more people than is on the list. Then there’s the bus, which almost had its wheels off.
Of course, it happens that something goes wrong, but in a few issues it was just carelessness and lack of professionalism. A few people really cared about our comfort and safety, and some treated tourists like cattle. You had to argue a little bit about your own.
After passing on our grievances, we asked for a more efficient team during the expedition to the colorful mountain.
Another journey through the swirls
This time we set off before dawn, and the weather was much better than before leaving for Machu. A cold morning heralded an unpleasant road towards the mountains, but the team that took us was much better prepared. At the very beginning they made sure who they were taking and immediately after entering we got a blanket on the road. There were also no transfers. They took everyone who was to go with us and we went on our way.
Breakfast on the road
Due to the fact that we started very early and the road took us some time, we were taken earlier for breakfast in one of the villages. There we had the opportunity to eat at a nice owner who had a Swedish table in his place. We ate, drank coca tea and were able to go on an expedition that I knew would not be easy.
Remark! We enter 5000 m above sea level.
After breakfast, we still had a long way to go, during which our super positive guide presented us with the dangers, or actually, one of the most important – the height. Because not every tourist realizes that a significant change in altitude is a different atmospheric pressure and air density. The body goes crazy, the head hurts, the belly goes crazy and we get tired 3x more than in the lowlands.
The guide told us a little about the mountain and what can wait for us very relaxed, so there was no stress. For this he gave us to try something like essential oils. What we could rub our hands and inhale, which is supposed to alleviate the symptoms of altitude sickness. Everything was nice, but we still had tourists from Asia on board, who had just arrived in Cusco and were there for a maximum of a few days – crazy!
In Cusco we have an altitude of 3300 m and from my own experience I know that landing in La Paz at an altitude of 3600 m I felt terrible for the next few days in Bolivia, despite the fact that we did not drastically change the altitude. That day we were supposed to reach an altitude of almost 5000 m. The general rule is to increase the altitude of 1000 m / 1-2 days to acclimatize, so I wondered if Asians who are 2-3 days in Cusco will not explode their heads, or will not be throwing in all directions.
After reaching the foot of the mountains, we still had to collect our entrance tickets and we could go trekking. We also got vests for our group and trekking poles. Full professed. For the lazy, there was also a choice of using their legs or hooves of a horse, which for a few dozen salts brought lazy people upstairs.
The trekking itself was not too cumbersome or demanding, except for the very end of the mountain, where it gets steeper and windier. The problem could only be height.
On the way, you can even meet several roadside stalls with drinks and snacks. Of course, correspondingly more expensive, for those who fall from strength.
The first victims of heights
Somewhere after 3/4 of the way, our assumptions about the high-altitude freshmen turned out to be right and individual people began to feel bad and gave up the entrance. At the top, the matter was already serious, because two people were given oxygen from special cylinders, and one was endured because she fainted.
On one of the blogs (before leaving) I read that they even put up with someone with a headscarf on their heads and it looked as if this person was dead. It may be hard to believe, but if someone has problems with pressure, it can end so badly, so it’s not worth ignoring the warning.
Additional peak – Red Valley
For those who are willing, apart from the most famous peak, which is often seen on the Internet and on postcards, you can (for an additional fee) visit one more view, which is a few minutes walk behind this peak. We walk for a while through an area that looks like the surface of some alien planet to reach the grandfather behind the stone, who listens to a small radical – you have to give him 5 salts for access to a big surprise.
At the end, we went a little crazy. First, we drank a beer from a gentleman who had his stall almost at the very top, and then for 50 soles we took a horse to quickly wash into the bus, because it was starting to rain.
On our way back, we visited the same inn where we had lunch again, and here we could see more clearly the victims of altitude sickness. In the morning everyone was smiling and full of energy, and now some looked as miserable as after a really good party. Sad, slow and unwilling to eat. Like me in Cusco.
Watch out for heights!