Peru – Huchuy Qosqo and other random local trails – Riding in Sacred Valley Peru Road Trip 2017

Peru’s Sacred Valley or Willka Qhichwa in Quecha

Day 3, 4 and 5- Racchi, Huchy Qosqo or Little Cusco; and Urquillos

Lima Rides || Sacred Valley Rides || Salkantay || Machu Picchu || Sky Lodge


This ride was after our Salkantay epic. Post-Salkantay we chilled in Sta. Teresa and watched Peru beat New Zealand 2-0 to qualify for the Football World Cup for the first time in 36 years. The whole country partied hard! VAMOS PERU CARAJO!

The next day we drove back to Urubamba via Abra Malaga at over 4400m. It was socked in so we elected to not do the Inca Megavalanche course and instead headed back to the Sacred Valley and lower elevations to ride the Racchi trail. There are four Racchi combinations off the viewpoint on the Urubamba-Cusco road and we took Racchi Caleta all the way down to Diego’s property at Huayllabamba for an enjoyable 800m descent – good for tired legs

Descent from Abra Malaga – Peruvians can build roads

Each of the four Racchis trailheads starts at the viewpoint for vendors on the Cusco – Urubamba highway

Viva Peru!! Arriba!

Diego dropping in as we get all tourist

Just another majestic Sacred Valley view

And yet more Inka stairs

Diego above Huayllabamba. The family homestead in picture right

Diego leading out Shar and Alberto

On the technical rocky downhill which forms part of the Santissimo DH racecourse

A berm built by the Holy Trails crew who maintain a portion of the lower Racchis trails

In his spare time of being a father of two, running Devinci Ecuador, Devinci Peru and Holy Trails MTB, Diego also organizes the Santissimo downhill and is the chief warehouseman for all the race paraphernalia. Busy guy!

 Huchuy Qosqo

Timeless Peru the living museum shows itself well on the Huchuy Qosqo ride. Not only do you get the massive elevation loss typical of Sacred Valley rides you literally descend not just through bio-geo-climatic zones but also through history as the building styles and architecture morph and meld.

The ruins we ride through on this day were from the estate of the emperor Viracocha Inca (1410-1438). The trails on which we rode were also built at this time, maybe even before.

While the Inka didn’t use ‘slaves’ nor tax the people they conquered, the workers worked under a ‘ Mit’a ‘ system whereby the people would work for the Inka for a period

of time before they were allowed to be ‘free’ to live on their own. Obviously this created a large workforce with loads of time to do some amazing rock work. Too bad trail advocacy groups can’t do the same with new riders…

The ruins of Huchuy Qosqo lie at 3700m. We started our ride on the high plateau at 4400m and ended in Lamay at 3000m. There are no roads to this site, so the only way to visit it if you don’t ride is a strenous hike from Lamay (lame) or to hike from where we rode (also lame). This would allow non-bikers to visit this site in a day or two but cuts way too much time out of Cerveca Treinta.

The high plateau is used by the community to farm and graze llamas. There are some roads, but we were able to freeride to the start of the Inka road. We followed the Inka road through some incredible construction. Let me tell you that Inka construction does NOT get old. We then descended the mother of all steep stairs and amazing views of the Sacred Valley. This is a worthy ride for the trail, the ride experience, the views and history.

4400m on the high plateau

Original Inka road, this is one of the few sites that are actively maintained. But they don’t need to do much.

Lee on the Inka Road

Hans on the Inka Road

Hans on the Inka Road

Hans on the Inka Road

Hans on the Inka Road

Diego on the Inka Road

Hans on the Inka Road

Hans on the Inka Road

Diego on the Inka Road

Inka Road

Inka Road – can you see Diego and Hans in this photo!

Inka construction – while the Inka didn’t use ‘slaves’ nor tax the people they conquered, the workers worked under a ‘ Mit’a ‘ system whereby the people would work for the Inka for period of time before they were allowed to be ‘free’ to live on their own.

Hans on the Inka Road

Gate to Huchuy Qosqo

Huchuy Qosqo

The house of Wiracocha. He was known as the gentleman Inca due to his exceptional manners and command of protocol. If someone calls you Wiracocha – that’s a compliment

Huchuy Qosqo

After this ride we had lunch in Lamay at the Parwa Restaurant. The community created this restaurant as a destination for people visiting this site. They serve authentic Peruvian food, you must reserve to eat here so they know you’re coming. All proceeds from this restaurant go to supporting the community.

History of this community

Back again at Villa Urubamba.


We finished riding with Holy Trails MTB Peru and Peru Outdoor Experiences by taking another 1650m truck assisted ride from alpine to Sacred Valley. This trail is deliberately not described in detail because access is via a gated road with the gate monitored and the road used by the local community. Diego has negotiated with the local community and contributed money and resources so the community has granted him access. This means that the trails are rarely used and the alpine in particular is relatively untouched.

True singletrack in paramo, high elevation forest and then brake-burning descent awaited us. We finished with Inca sites of course .

Traffic jam on the road access

Starting out in the alpine but with bigger peaks above us

Approaching then traversing ridgetop alpine rides

As drop off the alpine the brush becomes desert-like as this aspect is in rain-shadow

We then link up a series of ridgelines and drop down to valley floor

Brake-burner descent to the Sacred Valley

Another Inka ruin. You can see where the locals have built adobe walls on top of older Inka cobbled construction

After another relaxing couple of hours at Villa Urubamba we walked to another amazing restaurant in the Sol Y Luna Hotel – Killa Wasi.

Trailforks Ride Log


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