Thursday 11th September 2014:
Today we began the Salkantay Trek from Marco Casa near Cusco to Aguas Calientes at Machu Picchu. It began with a 4am pick up from our hostel and a drive to the starting point. Joined with our new Salkantay team mates and our guide we began our ascent into the magnificent towering Andes.
After a six hour trek we devoured lunch at the camp and had a power nap. Rumours of the green lagoon named Lake Humantay 1000 feet further up the mountain beckoned us and after digesting our lunch we set off up the steep incline with new found energy. My legs ached beneath me as we climbed the unrelenting slope and my heart pounded in my chest like a reckless speed train. We climbed the 1000ft of increased altitude in an hour and the relief to reach the top ran through my body like a warm shower.
The view my eyes beheld was awe inspiring. Flanked on all sides by the rising earth of the scooped out basin and behind by a magnificent vision of icy waterfalls cascading down a snow lined mountain side, it was breathtaking. The last rays of sunlight caught the lake with sparkling turquoise brilliance and we all ran down to the waters edge.