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Machu Picchu the Cool Way: Photo Gallery
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Trekking to Machu Picchu (the Cool Way)

No crowds. Plush lodges. Jungles, glaciers, and high Andean peaks. The Camino
Salcantay is the savvy traveler's alternative to the Inca Trail. Never before has
the road to ruins been so much fun.   Photograph and text by Brent Stirton

Photo: Trekking in the Andes

Several of the passes along Camino Salcantay, an alternative to the popular Inca Trail, top 14,000 feet (4,260 meters) and are surrounded by glaciers.

<< Photo 2 of 7 >>

At the beginning of the trek, we weren't quite acclimatized to the altitude. While we meandered up this mountain to a glacial lake, the Peruvians with us were sprinting ahead, which was more than humbling. 

Many of these fields were, until recently, covered with ice. The scope of the glacial retreat is just startling, you can literally see, and hear, huge chunks of ice disappearing throughout the mountains.
Photographer Brent Stirton

Plan your own trip with our Adventure Guide to Peru's Camino Salcantay >>

See the feature story "Machu Picchu the Cool Way" in the November 2007 issue of National Geographic Adventure.

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