Peru mtb tour
The Perfect Addition to any Peru Trip: Haku’s Ausangate Enduro Mountain Bike Holiday
In Incan mythology, Ausangate is home to Apu, the spirit of the sacred mountain. Our Ausangate enduro mountain bike holiday gives you 3 days in the majestic Vilcanota mountain range in the Peruvian Andes, where you can see for yourself why the Incas chose this area as a place of worship and peace. The Ausangate single trail mountain bike trip is a crown jewel of Peru mountain biking.
Our trip departs from Cusco, and we’ll travel for about 3 hours until we reach the base of the towering Ausangate mountain. You’ll stay in a local home, eat local food, hike, and mountain bike some of the raddest terrain Peru has to offer. Oh, and by the way — there’s a thermal hot spring near where you’re staying.
Check out what our epic Ausangate enduro mountain bike holiday has in store for you below!
Dates for our 3-Day Ausangate Enduro Mountain Bike Holiday:
What you can expect
Enduro MTB Holiday Highlights
Some highlights to look forward to on your enduro mountain bike holiday
Live a real Peruvian adventure
Ausangate MTB Holiday Full Details
Your Enduro mountain bike holiday will kick off at our Cusco shop at 9:30 am. There, we’ll fit you to your bike and give you your gear. Then head out to the majestic area of Ausangate, a 3-hour drive from Cusco. We will arrive at the home of a local in a very remote area in the Peruvian Andes, where you’ll be staying and eating. There will be a delicious Peruvian lunch waiting for us at the house. After eating, we’ll take a short hike or bike ride to acclimatize ourselves to the elevation.
The trail is about 3 km and is perfect for getting our body warmed up for day 2. When we get back, we’ll enjoy some hot tea as the weather at 4267 m/14,000 ft and above is often pretty chilly! Dinner is at 7pm after which you are free to sleep or visit the hot springs.
Lodging: Local home at base altitude of 4,267 m/14,000 ft
Food included: L, D, snacks
Rise and shine! Today will be one of the most beautiful days on a bike you have ever experienced!
We’ll wake up bright and early for a 6:30 am breakfast and head out at 7 am to do what you came here to do — mountain bike Ausangate! The hike up to the MTB trailhead is about 15-20 minutes; since the route is at very high-altitude, we’ll just take it slow and enjoy the scenery. There will be locals to accompany us who will carry any additional gear we may need and help push our bikes when we cannot pedal.
There will be a lot of cross country pedaling today with a combination of ascents and descents. After about an hour we’ll come across the calm, emerald beauty of the first of many stunning glacial lakes of the day, with a hulking glacier just on the other side of it. As we continue on, high alpine alpacas will be grazing on either side of us. On the way down, we’ll mountain bike past even more glacial lakes and stunning views of towering, 20,000ft snow-capped mountains. We will end the trail at a set of hot springs where we can relax before heading to lunch with our local family. After lunch, you are free to relax or head back up to the hot springs. We’ll have a light dinner and be free to sleep, hang out, and take in the beauty of this Incan holy mountain.
Distance: 20 km/12.4 mi
Max elevation of 4876 m/15997 ft
Ascent: 655 m/2148 ft
Descent: 579 m/1899 ft
Lodging: Local home
Food included: B, L, D, snacks
We hope you enjoyed the mighty Ausangate! Today we will be heading out to ride the coveted South Valley MTB track Radar!
Breakfast will be between 8-8:30. We will pack up and drive 2 hours to the trail head where you will get an amazing view of the mountains you just explored. Now for one of the top trails in Cusco…Radar!
Bill and Nic were the first to ever lay tracks on this crazy, seemingly never-ending enduro-style trail in the South Valley of Cusco, and from the moment they did it, they knew they’d have to share with other adventurous riders. After lunch at a local restaurant, we will head back into Cusco. If the energy is high and you are craving one last ride we can do a quick Urban DH into the Cusco City Center!
Distance: 13 km/8 mi
Max Elevation: 4,468 m/14,658 ft
Ascent: 94 m/309 ft
Descent: 1367 m/4,487 ft
Lodging: not included
Meals: B, L
NOTE: If you don’t have time for the 3 day Ausangate mountain bike adventure, or if you don’t feel like you’re not quite ready as a mountain biker to take on the harder Radar trail, contact us to make this into a 2 day mountain bike vacation with just Ausangate.
Also: If you’d prefer to hike rather than mountain bike Ausangate, or if you are traveling with a partner who would like to hike while you mountain bike, just let us know! We’re flexible!
What’s the price of this 3 day Ausangate Enduro mountain bike holiday? And what’s included?
The price for this adventure tour is $635 pp with a minimum of two people for departure.
This is a limited time offer: In August 2020, the price will be raised by $200 per person!
- Rental bike: full-suspension Kona Process 153
- Gear Rental, helmet, gloves, knee pads, and elbow pads
- Bilingual, knowledgeable guide for the entire trip and his expenses
- Local porter to help push your bike and carry additional gear on day 2
- All transport
- Entrance fees for the Ausangate Park
- Entrance into the hot springs
- Lodging for two nights in the home of a local
- 7 meals
- Snacks and water
- Meals not stated (breakfast on the first day, dinner on the last day)
- Tips for you guide and driver
For this Enduro Mountain Bike Holiday:
You should have a mountain biking skill level of intermediate: You’ve got two plus years of experience mountain biking on single-track trails under your belt; you’ve gotten pretty confident behind the handlebars and are beginning to expand your mountain bike abilities. You like riding most types of terrain, and you’re comfortable both climbing and descending on single-track trails with smaller technical features such as rocky sections, small drops, and small steep sections. You aren’t trying to walk on most of the trail and are looking to take small risks with things like speed, jumps, rock gardens, and stair sets to improve your skills as a mountain biker.
Your fitness level should be at least a 3: You exercise one to two times a week but do not have a normal schedule that keeps you biking or doing other activities weekly. You don’t go to the gym or train for any specific sports but you lead a relatively active lifestyle by biking, hiking, skiing, or whatever it may be. For biking: climbs and long descents give you some trouble and you tend to get tired after about 2-3 hours on the bike.
And you would be really happy if it is a 4 You exercise 3-4 times a week and enjoy physical activities such as biking, hiking, skiing. You are active. For biking: you enjoy climbs that are are moderately long and being on a bike for 3-5 hours in one day doesn’t get you too tired or fatigued.
This enduro mountain bike holiday begins and ends in Cusco, Peru. You will want to look for flights to Cusco (CUZ) which will always require a layover. Layovers are often in Bogota or Lima. Layovers are often long and arrivals to Lima are generally around 2am-3am.
You can also fly into Lima and spend a night there before flying out in the morning.
Check if you need a visa for any of the countries you may pass though such as China. Some countries require it even when passing though, others will allow you to stay in the airport in a special area without leaving. Be sure of your layover countries visa requirements.
IMPORTANT: Generally anytime you land in another country you need to get your luggage and rescan it or re-check it for security purposes. Every country is different so check ONCE YOU ARRIVE, do not count on the front desk lady who checked you in at your first airport. In Lima you must re-check your bags.
Make sure you have enough time during your layover for migrations and the bag check.
Cusco is at very high altitude so we suggest arriving early if possible to acclimatise.
There is no airport pick up or drop off with this itinerary. If you would like that let us know!
For this 3 day tour package you will want to arrive early to acclimatize. We ride on day three so please do not book flights for that day.
This enduro mountain bike holiday will be physically demanding at high altitude. We recommend you try to work out a few times a week. Radar’s 4500 ft descent will be challenging on the legs and arms while Ausangate will challenge your endurance. If you can not get to the gym, don’t worry — there are many free apps these days with intense 15 minute workouts. Taking the time to do a short but intense workout with squats, pushups and some core will make a huge difference!
This MTB tour includes 3 meals with a local family and lunch at a local restaurant. We can accommodate most diet restrictions.
If you have dietary restrictions please let us know so we can help you plan for the tour accordingly.
We provide snacks for the ride days. However, Peru does not have the same high calorie snacks that most developed countries have. Feel free to bring extra energy bars for the trail if you think you may want snacks you already enjoy!
We provide water for the rides. You will need a bottle or camelbak to fill.
Each person is required to have a specific travel/trip insurance outside of your credit card or regular medical insurance. You should get comprehensive coverage with trip interruption/cancelation and with personal liability. Mention all activities that you will be involved in such as mountain biking and whatever other activities you may have planned.
We do not provide refunds. Because mountain biking is an adventure activity and getting hurt is a possibility you will want a travel insurance. If you should get hurt not only will it cover your medical expenses it will also cover the lost portion of the tour. Make sure you have trip interruption or trip cancelation included! South America is famous for people striking and shutting down all activities. If you miss your Machu Picchu tour, your Amazon tour or your flight due to strikes the insurance will cover the loss or additional costs that are incurred.
Peru’s currency is called the Nuevo Sol. You’ll be able to exchange US currency for the Sol easily in Cusco. The exchange rate often fluctuates between 3.29-3.33 sol per US dollar.
We recommend you bring cash. Peru is still a cash society. Most people don’t have bank accounts as Peruvian banks charge up to $15 per month just to have the account open. So, services like Venmo, Pay-Pal, and Apple Pay aren’t used here. Most local stores, taxis, and local restaurants are cash only.
ATMs charge around $8 to take out $60-200. Banks only allow a small withdrawal daily. Thus, it’s probably a good idea to withdraw a good sum of cash before you come to Peru. The USD, EURO, CAD cash you bring should be non-ripped bills. Small rips or bills that are written on are not accepted for exchange.
Seeing as Peru is a cash society and it is difficult to withdraw large amounts of cash, we require your balance be brought in cash.
TIPPING: Local restaurants generally do not require a tip, however, leaving a few soles is a nice gesture. Tourist restaurants are generally a 10% tip.
Tipping your guide in Peru is generally 5-10% of the price you paid for the tour.
Best mountain trip ever!"This trip has everything! It started with an amazing hike through beautiful lagoons by the side of the amazing Ausangate, all the way up (4400m) the bikes were carried by locals so we can enjoy the views and take pictures of everything. Once on top, the locals brought back all the equipment and cameras. The descent is easy and flowy it took 30-60 minutes but the landscapes were beautiful and at the bottom of the trail, a hot spring was waiting for us...returning to Cuzco the shuttle left us at top of Radar, one of the best DH trails we have ever ridden...this was an 18 km trail which had everything to enjoy; rocks, switchbacks, drops...if you like mountains and enjoy enduro or DH this is the best tour in the world. BTW all the food was delicious, it was all cooked by locals in their houses. "
10 Day Trip of a Lifetime"I absolutely can't say enough about Bill, Nic and the entire Haku team. My trip was so thoughtfully put together by Bill to include all that I wanted to do in Cusco and more. We spent 3 days in the high country around Ausangate with the locals, ripped the amazing Radar trail, spent an incredible NYE in Cusco, rode Lares and Lamay, had a fully set up trip to Machu Picchu with a guide and accommodations, and then a final day of shredding in Ollantaytambo."
Unbelievably great biking/hiking experience"Ausangate was an unbelievably great biking/hiking experience. The trip was really well planned and began with a scenic drive to our Peruvian host. After a quick lunch we went out for a short ride and I was excited to preview what was to come. The host and guides made sure all our needs were taken care of and the journey could not have been more spectacular. It all ended with a soak in the hot springs. 5 stars! "
You need to be acclimatized for this mtb enduro tour; this means that if you live at low altitude, you should probably arrive in Cusco two to three days before the biking trip begins.
Working out will help you to prepare for this tour as well.
We also recommend you take vitamin C supplements and probiotics before you come and while here. As great as Peru’s food is, it’s probably different than what your body is used to, so it’s important to make sure your body is ready for the transition. Food safety is crucial when travelling abroad, and Peru is no exception. Check out our blog on the subject.
Out in the Ausangate region there is no where to get cash, exchange cash, or use a credit card. Make sure to have some cash in Peruvian sol for small things like beer or locally made handicrafts.
For Cusco area:
Bring cash. Peru is still a cash society. Most people don’t have bank accounts as Peruvian banks charge up to $15 per month just to have the account open. So, services like Venmo, Pay-Pal, and Apple Pay aren’t used here. Drivers, guides, local restaurants — all will be expecting cash.
This means that we too will ask for the balance of your trip in cash for the simple reason that we must pay everyone we work with in cash.
ATMS charge around $8 to take out $60-200. Banks only allow a small withdraw daily. Thus, it’s probably a good idea to withdraw a good sum of cash before your flight to Peru.
Peru’s currency is called the Sol. You’ll be able to exchange US currency for the Sol easily if you need to in Cusco
Each group should have at least 2 people with a max of 7 riders. If you are alone and have specific dates outside of our trip dates, contact us — we are flexible and will make sure we can get you out shredding in Peru.
This enduro mountain bike holiday is a mix of high altitude XC and Enduro. In Ausangate there will be plenty of pedaling uphill while the Radar MTB ride will be 95% downhill mountain biking on all mountain terrain.
On our Ausangate loop we will cover 20 km/12 mi of cross country style terrain.
On the MTB trail Radar, we will ride 13 km/8 mi with more than 1370 m/4500 ft of descent.
On our Ausanagte enduro MTB holiday we will bring along local porters to help carry any additional gear we may need such as rain pants, down jacket, extra water, food etc. You will only need to carry a decent sized camel pack with water, snacks, rain shell, camera.
We will have porters to help us push the bikes due to the seriousness of the altitude. If you can not ride a tech section, for instance on Radar, please just walk it.
We have a great group of guides. Check out our Team page to see who may be on your awesome MTB tour.
We will be staying with locals in their home. It will feel essentially like a step above camping; you’ll have a small, quaint room with a simple bed. There is no shower and the bathroom is shared.
7 meals are included.
L, D, B, L, D, B, L
We also include snacks for the tour.
You should leave most of your luggage at the shop or your hotel in Cusco and come with only the necessary things for the MTB trip itself.
It will be cold. It will be very cold as we are always at 14,000ft or above. Be prepared for very cold weather with down jackets, hats, gloves, etc.
Generally, though: we don’t know! We are at a base altitude of 14,000+ feet. When you’re that high up, the weather is constantly changing. We recommend that you don’t look at the forecast because, frankly, it’s always wrong. Our dry season is between mid-May and late September. The shoulder seasons are April and October, and the rainy season is between November and March with the heaviest rains in December and February.
We recommend this enduro mountain bike holiday between May-Sept. However we are willing to take you on another date knowing it may be wet or snowy.
Ausangate 3-day Enduro Mountain Bike Holiday Packing list:
- Passport and plane tickets!
- Cash, credit cards, ATM card
- Trip/Travel Insurance papers
- Hiking shoes or bikes shoes for platform pedals to hike in. This trip you can not use clip-less pedals or shoes
- Toiletries/medicines/epi pens/inhaler, etc…
- Travel towel
- Ear plugs and face mask for sleeping at night
- Rain jacket and pants
- Reusable water bottle that hot water can be poured into or can be sterilized in
- Sun hat and sunglasses
- Wool or fleece sweater
- Wool base layers, top and bottom
- Battery pack for many charges and charging cables
- Wool socks and lots of them
- Buff or scarf
- Camera and GoPro (optional)
- Down jacket
- CamelBak for the ride
- High calorie snacks (Optional as we provide snacks)
- Something to do at night, (Kindle, books, cards) there is no internet
The laws here are always changing. We have had no problems in the past with drones, although this is at your own risk. Furthermore, if you are jumping in with an already-formed group, we can’t promise that we’ll be able to stop to do drone footage for you as it can significantly cut in on riding time. If you are in a private group and the group doesn’t mind, then we are happy to stop to film.
Each person is required to have a specific travel/trip insurance outside of your credit card or regular medical insurance. If possible, you should get comprehensive coverage with trip interruption/cancelation and with personal liability. Mention all activities that you will be involved in such as mountain biking and whatever other activities you may have planned. Say you get hurt on the first day and miss the rest of the enduro mountain bike holiday — this insurance will refund you the missed portion of the trip. It will also cover any added costs due to delay, sickness, strikes by the local people, etc.
Per our regulations, all of our mountain bike guides have at least basic first aid (composed of 16-hour classes which require an update every year), and many have supplemented that with in-depth multi-day training.
But due to the fact that we will be in the backcountry for this mtb tour, if you get hurt on the trail you will either need to hike out, get carried out, or wait for medical help. We do not have helicopter rescue. It is crucial that you ride at about 80% of your capacity and don’t overstep your abilities. Although our guides are there to help you, the success of your trip is dependent on you managing your own risk by taking preventative measures, listening to your guides’ advice, and riding well within your skill level.
- At high elevations, sometimes it is hard to eat or your appetite may not be great. It’s great to have energy chews or small high-calorie snacks to help get enough calories throughout the day.
- It can also be difficult for some to sleep at high elevation, so ear plugs, an eye mask, or earphones for light music might help.
- If you want to spend more days in the area, let us know and we can arrange that for you.
Add some grip to your ride! These riding shoes will keep you on the pedals and provide a safer experience.
Price: $7 USD per ride day, $14 USD for the trip
All add-ons will be offered to you at check out.
Seeing this iconic 15th century Incan citadel is a more than worthy bucket list item for most people that come to Peru. If you’d like, we’ll organize a Machu Picchu tour of the site that includes a round-trip train ticket, entrance to the sanctuary, and an English-speaking guide.
Archaeologists believe that Machu Picchu was built as a palace for the Incan emperor Pachacuti in the 15th century. They abandoned it after roughly a century during the Spanish conquest, only to remain virtually unknown until 1911, when American historian Hiram Bingham made Machu Picchu’s existence public. In 1983, it became a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and since then it has captured the imagination and awe of the millions of people who travel to experience its magic.
Price: $350 per person (Normally $389 pp when purchased separately)
- Entrance into Machu Picchu
- Round-trip train ticket on Peru rail
- An English-speaking guide
- Two-hour Machu Picchu tour
- Taxi to the train station in Cusco
- Bus up to the ruins (15$ USD add-on at check out)
- Entrance into Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain
- Taxi to train station in Ollantaytambo
All add-ons will be offered to you at check out.
Make your vacation even easier! Let us book a hotel or airbnb for you!
We make sure to book you a place that has a central location in Cusco with in walking distance to the Plaza de Armas.
We also make sure you have a place that has real hot water as many places in Cusco only offer cold water or luke warm showers at best!
Hotels include breakfast. Private apartment airbnb do not.
Price: $60 USD for 1-2 person group
All add-ons will be offered to you at check out.
Fitness & skill level
Is This Enduro Mountain Bike Holiday For You?
This Ausangate Enduro Mountain Bike Holiday is for avid, intermediate to advanced mountain bikers who want to be challenged and amazed with a world-class South American mountain biking tour but may not have the time for a full 7-10 day MTB holiday. It is the perfect addition to any Peru tour and includes a rental bike!
Our 3-day Enduro Mountain Bike Holiday is ideal if you:
- Love mountain biking and want a backcountry experience in Peru
- Have booked a tour for Machu Picchu and are looking to add on an adventure of a lifetime
- Crave off the beaten path trips far from the main tourist circuit
- Are physically fit and up for a challenge
- Are looking for a cultural homestay experience