inca trail elevation map

Inca Trail Elevation Gain: The Inca Trail is a popular trek in Peru that leads to the ancient Inca city of Machu Picchu. The trail covers a distance of approximately 26 miles (42 kilometers) and spans various terrains, including mountains, valleys, and forests. The elevation gain along the Inca Trail can vary depending on the starting point and the specific route taken, but here is a general breakdown of the elevation gain for the most common four-day trek:

Inca Trail Elevation gain day by day

Inca Trail Day 1 Cusco / Piskacucho / Km 82 / Wayllabamba:

The trail begins at an elevation of around 8,900 feet (2,700 meters) at the trailhead in Km 82, and you hike up to the first campsite at Wayllabamba, which is at approximately 10,800 feet (3,300 meters). The elevation gain on the first day is roughly 1,900 feet (600 meters).

Inca Trail Day 2 – Inca Trail Highest elevation:

On the second day, you climb from Wayllabamba to the highest point of the trek, which is Dead Woman’s Pass (Warmiwañusca), located at an altitude of about 13,800 feet (4,215 meters). This day involves a significant elevation gain of approximately 3,000 feet (900 meters). After reaching the pass, you descend to the second campsite at Pacaymayo, which is around 11,800 feet (3,600 meters).

Inca Trail Day 3 Pacaymayo / Chaquicocha / Wiñaywayna:

The third day involves climbing to two high points: Runkurakay Pass (13,000 feet or 3,950 meters) and Phuyupatamarca Pass (12,000 feet or 3,650 meters). The elevation gain on this day is not as significant as on the second day but still requires some uphill hiking. You descend to the third campsite at Wiñay Wayna, which is approximately 8,900 feet (2,700 meters) above sea level.

Inca TrailDay 4 Wiñaywayna / Machupicchu / Cusco:

On the final day, you start the trek early in the morning and hike to Inti Punku, also known as the Sun Gate, which sits at an elevation of around 8,900 feet (2,700 meters). From there, you descend to the iconic Machu Picchu, which is situated at approximately 7,900 feet (2,400 meters) above sea level. The elevation gain on the fourth day is minimal.

It’s important to note that these figures are approximate and can vary depending on the specific itinerary, variations in routes, and individual pace. It’s also essential to acclimatize to the altitude and consider the physical demands of the trek before embarking on the Inca Trail.