The Rainbow Mountain is situated in the Andes and fast becoming a mandatory waypoint along Machu Picchu treks. The mountain looks exactly like its namesake, but it rests 5200m above sea level.
Here are some fast facts about the site that’ll make you want to book an adventure tour super-fast.
1. Rainbow Mountain was Discovered in 2015
Before 2015, no one knew that the Rainbow Mountain aka, Vinicunca aka Mountain of Seven Colors even existed. This wonder of the world was Peru’s secret for the longest time before climate change came along and melted plenty of snow, including the one covering the wonders that lay within the Peruvian Andes.
And so, we have this multi-colored site, which is a blend of mineral deposits made prettier thanks to the surrounding elements.
2. The Vinicunca is Colored by an Infusion of Mineral Deposits
Individual and combining minerals are responsible for the colors of the rainbow mountain, which are several, but generally include:
- Red from the clay and its iron-rich sediments reacting to oxidization.
- Pink from the lightening of the red from a combination of clay, sand, and mud.
- Yellow from Sulphur-rich sandstone and limestone.
- Brown from the magnesium in the rocks.
- White from quartz, marls, and sandstone.
- Cyan from phyllite compounds and iron-magnesium, containing clay.
3. Altitude Sickness Galore
The ride from Cusco to Rainbow Mountain takes almost three hours, give or take. If you travel that kind of distance without resting beforehand, you’re at a higher risk of altitude sickness.
Most experts recommend resting for at least 48 hours after arriving in Cusco to get used to the height and then embarking on the trek to have a better time with the incredibly thin air during the summit.
4. There’s Life Around the Rainbow Mountain!
You may have to get used to the Rainbow Mountain air, but the animals and humans, who have dwellings around it, have long since conquered the extreme conditions of the area.
Don’t be surprised to find one of the world’s last remaining shepherds herding llamas, horses, sheep, and alpacas, or the odd partridge, condor, fox, Andean goose, mountain cat, and more.
Book a Rainbow Hike in Cusco Online
Add the Rainbow Mountain to your adventure and trekking itinerary. Book a private tour of the Andes at Rainbow Mountain Expeditions, and discover the secrets that lay under a snowy expanse until six years ago.
Contact us to share your special needs.