Tips for hiking Machu Picchu, Inca Trail and other routes.
Before the hike:
- Make sure you have all that you need in your daypack.
- Always check that your backpack is properly attached to your body.
- Most new backpacks have a safety whistle located in the chest buckle.
- Test the emergency whistle. Remember the following guidelines for how to use a whistle in case of emergency. One blast means hi! or where are you? Or you can interpret that as a call-back signal if you hear anything that sounds like an emergency request. Two Blasts of the whistle mean "Come here” and Three blasts mean SOS! Emergency! Help!
- Make sure you wear hiking boots and hiking socks. They reduce the risk of injuries.
- Check that your hiking boots straps are well tied.
- Always use trekking poles.
- Start well hydrated. It is best to start any hike after you have had a good amount of electrolytes. We suggest that you drink gatorade or any other hydrating salts right before you start hiking. Do this especially if the day is hot.
- Avoid heat exposure by wear a cap during the day if the temperatures are hot.
- Avoid Hypothermia by wearing a warm hat if the temperatures are really low.
- Make sure you are wearing the right layers of clothing based on the weather conditions. You don’t want to be sweating profusely if it is a warm day and you don’t want to be cold if it is freezing out there.
TIPS FOR HIKING AT HIGH ALTITUDE:
- Start slow, really slow first. Especially if you are still acclimating.
- SLOW and STEADY is the mantra.
- Use your trekking poles!! Warm up first to slowly change your pace.
- Check your pulse and keep track of it if you can. If possible, carry a small oximeter with you.. Walk in 10-15 minute intervals, then rest for 2 minutes, that is enough time to catch your breath and drink a sip of water. Do not take long breaks unless you have walked for at least 45 minutes. Take only 5 to 10 minute breaks max. We do not advice that you take long breaks because it is important to maintain body temperature and momentum.
- When taking a break, take off your backpack and relax your shoulders. Stretch your legs and your calves if you can. If you get out breath, do the following breathing exercise; Inhale deeply while you open your arms all the way up and exhale closing your arms all the way down. this is the easiest way to help you catch your breath. Stay hydrated at all times.
- Snack a little every time you stop. Half a power bar or a few nuts will keep your body full of energy and calories.
Other basic important information:
- Don’t ever litter. Some other people might do it. Pick a few pieces of rubbish along the way if you find some. If all of us pick up a little bit, then together, we will have a bigger positive impact.
- Do not disturb the wildlife in these mountains – always follow your tour guide’s directions with regards to interaction with native plants and animals.
- Do not pick up plants or flowers of any kind. Leave nature in nature. The best place to appreciate their beauty is at their source.
- Keep organic and non organic rubbish separated. Batteries should be returned back to your countries of origin for proper disposal.
- Remain quiet, and keep your voices low while on the campsites. Our tents are not sound proof. Remember that we are here to enjoy nature, and that includes the beautiful sounds of nature.
- Do not consume alcoholic beverages or use drugs while on the treks. There will be a time for celebration too.
- Do not light candles or matches inside the tents, as tents are highly flammable.
- No swimming in the nearby lakes or rivers. Don’t go into rivers, lakes, or streams without sandals.
- Please stay on the trails at all times. It is best when you stick to the directions provided by your guides. The trails are filled with many beautiful things that you might miss if you do not listen the explanations provided by your guides.
- As a matter of safety and to avoid noise pollution, do not play music or wear headphones while you hike.
- Keep local people undisturbed and respect their right to privacy. Always ask first if you intend taking photos of them.