November 4-12, 2022
Sweet Skills joined this trip in 2018 and was blown away by the quality of riding, the sights, the culture, hospitality, and the food. There was no way we’d pass up parterning with Big Mountain Bike Adventures to bring a group of ladies to this amazing destination.
Ride through the majestic Andes Mountains alongside alpacas, lamas, and donkeys, visiting ancient Inca sites and small villages, going from high alpine passes to eucalyptus forests. Every day is a new adventure with new sights!
Experience the cultural high mountain town of Cusco for part of the trip then transfer over to the Sacred Valley which is aptly named for this beautiful part of Peru. From there we’ll spend one day off the bike for a much needed ‘rest day’ as we enjoy a guided tour of Machu Pichu.
THE RIDING: Every day starts with a shuttle up through the mountains and villages. There may be 1-3 shuttles throughout the day. If you’re not a fan of shuttles… you will be here! The elevation is between 3500-4500m and it’s quite hard to put in any effort to say the least. The trails will still have some uphill components and the longest climb would be about 1 hour in length. The trails vary from technical and rocky to flowy and smooth, sometimes on ancient inca trails with some cool stairs to ride and through pasture lands and eucalyptus forests in the valley. We’ll ride along some exposed terrain and more technically challenging parts so the level required is upper intermediate to advanced.
THE LODGING: We’ll stay 2 nights in nice hotel Cusco (1 at the start of the trip and 1 at the end). After a day of riding, explore everything this high mountain town has to offer: vibrant markets, cobblestone streets, small shops, and excellent organic restaurants. On day 2 we start our day in Sacred Valley where we’ll ride and stay for 6 nights and are treated to a beautiful new lodge built by our guides. This private guest house boasts large rooms, in-house chef, fire pit, babbling brook and quiet surroundings. The best place to relax after a full day of riding!
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9 days (7 days of riding), 8 nights
Welcome to Cusco! Meet the guides and group, then hop in the shuttle to be whisked up the hillside to start our first ride of the trip. A nice warm up ride climbing up on farm roads past Inca ruins then down through winding singletrack with some fun flowy sections finishing with a steep descent into a Eucalyptus forest and a blast through Cusco town back to the hotel.
16 Km. 340m, 525m Time: 2-3 hrs. Max Elevation 3690 m.
Early start today with a 1hr drive to Sacred Valley to settle into the Lodge then ride the Lamay trails all day. Get ready for a full day of epic riding in the lush Lamay Valley that features amazing shuttled all-mountain rides. The first shuttle drops us off high in the mountains next to a stunning alpine lake. Wind your way through animal trails, flowy sections and creek crossings to end in the small village where the school kids have received bikes on donation from Pink Bike, Big Mountain, and our guides in 2018. Continue along the trail past the village where it gets steeper with rocky sections and old inca stairs. Our last shuttle will bring us back up the mountain for a super fun flowy trail with technical sections and amazing views. So many trails in this valley with never any other bikers in sight.
20km. 83m ascent, 1792m descent. Max Elevation 4335 m
Ride a stunning high mountain pass all the way to the valley – epic day! Today you’ll experience more of the best mountain biking trails in the Andes. This morning we shuttle an hour and a half to an amazing ride on an ancient Inca trail to the lush and green Lares Valley. After lunch we’ll head up for one last ride that starts high at Lares Pass at 440m. Epic views of big snowy peaks as we ride along mossy alpine meadows on a super fun trail that keeps going and going to the vibrant town of Calca.
27km. 60m ascent, 2070m descent. Max Elevation 4400 m.
Visit ancient Inca sights and a unique salt mine. This morning we’ll shuttle to the village of Misminay for a scenic and easy ride that passes through farm fields to the impressive archaeological Inca site, Moray. Pass through a small town with narrow streets and friendly villagers to reach some more fun and flowy trails before descending switchbacks to the Maras salt ponds which have been in use since pre-Inca times. Enjoy a buffet lunch in town and back to the guest house for our final night of celebration.
29km. 200m ascent, 1130m descent. Max Elevation 3830 m.
Ride one of Sacred Valley’s new jewels – La Maxima. Incredible views as we flow through different types of terrain. We can’t wait to take you to this new zone!
12km. 340m ascent, 1037m descent. Max Elevation 4600m
Visit Machu Picchu – an all-day adventure and a well-deserved day off the bike. Wake up early and board the shuttle to be transferred to Ollantaytambo for a 1.5hr scenic train ride to the town of Aguas Calientes. Here we meet our guide and hop on a short bus ride on a windy trail up the mountain to the gates of Machu Picchu. Learn all about this incredible ‘wonder of the world’ with our own private guide. Walk around town after the guided tour, enjoy lunch in Aguas Calientes then it’s back on the train to Ollantaytambo.
Ride Patacancha Valley & Pumamarca. Enduro Day. Today’s ride is a journey that you’ll never forget, from a remote high pass at 4450m all the way to the town of Ollantaytambo via a stunning valley, mostly on singletrack that once hosted a Peruvian Enduro race. Have a chance to buy traditional tapestry from the locals alongside the trail. We’ll stop in the small traditional village of Huilloc for lunch and to witness life in rural Peru.
35 km. 120m ascent, 2020m descent. Max Elevation 4460 m.
Ride the best of Cusco… downhill special! Today we’ll ride a few of the best trails in the Cusco area. Our first shuttle is to 4,240 m (13,911 ft.) to the Occoruro Pass. You will be blown away with the scenery on the way up! The Milky Way trail has some technical steep sections, banked curves, switchbacks and rock gardens. Then we ride Yuncaypata trail which is a short but fun jump trail. Practice your air on the small jumps with views of town! Our last ride starts in an abanded village and flows down the mountain through some smooth and rocky sections. Stop and check out some ruins and an ancient cave. Then get ready for our final dinner out in Cusco!
19km. 28m ascent, 1625m descent. Max Elevation 4240 m.
Bike packing and back to Cusco airport for your flight to Lima and home.
*Trip itinerary is subject to change
“I can’t say enough about this trip, how mind-blowing it was to explore this gorgeous country by bike and take in all of its rich history, colours, and amazing people. I was so touched to meet the school kids and ladies on the side of the trail selling their hand-made goods. The food is incredible to say the least. The guides so friendly, humble, and proud to show us their best trails. Their new guest house in Sacred Valley is going to top this trip off and I can’t wait to take people back and do it all again!” Sylvie Allen, Sweet Skills Founder