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The 26 mile Inca Trail is a beast of a journey that physically taxed my body to its limit all while completely rejuvenating my spirit. Our Ketchuan guide was god sent, giving us a very unfiltered experience of the trail in all of its original glory. I found myself falling in love with Pachamama and the promise of brief rainbows that connects the earth to the spiritual realm.

All pride aside, the Inca Trail was extremely difficult. I went in obliviously confident that I did not need an additional porter and choose to strap 19 pounds of god forsaken weight onto my body. I won’t go into too much detail about the lingering altitude sickness, the unrelenting rain, or the fact that my period started on the first day of the trail (one that I wasn’t prepared for); these events do not paint a glorious, new world wonder image in anyone’s mind.

I dropped off my many demons on the trail as well- like the fresh heaps of steaming burro turds that lined the pathways. They became too heavy to carry. It was here where I decided to stop being such an angry person and to let go of things beyond my control. Every step I took was a testament to the fact that my will has finally matured to surpass my physical limitations.

So, you see? Physically and mentally taxing but spiritually renewed. And there wasn’t even a choir or a preacher necessary. Just me and Pachamama.

Company: InfoCusco

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Day 1:

alongside the south bank of the Urubamba River

pass the Incan ruins of Llactapata

alongside the Cusichaca river

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Day 2:

elevation gain of 4,000 feet

climbed Dead Woman’s pass

total altitude of 13,776 feet

alongside the Llullucha river

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Day 3:

2 mountainous passes

total altitudes of 12,470 feet & 11,742 feet

pass the Runkuracay, Sayacmarca, and Winay Wayna ruins

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Day 4:

through the sun gate into Machu Picchu

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