Cordillera Blanca - Logistics

Peru 03

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Equipment
This is roughly what we took with us in the way of technical kit etc. plus tents etc.

Ab Tat approx 40m Pegs approx 15
Three light racks approx 10 nuts/hexes each Ice screws approx 15
Individual rack stuff each 1 long sling
pruisiks(?) ropeman, or equivalent
1 belay/ab device (not both)
2 or 3 screw gates. 
Ropes One rope for each person
Cookers 1 MSR Whisperlite
3 MSR XGKs
White gas/petrol/Coleman fuel/benzina blanca is readily available from many Ferretarias (?) in Huaraz and though it comes out of grubby looking containers we filtered it and had no problems with our cookers.  
Mountain food
brought with us from the UK
dehydrated food
Custard powder
Noodles
soup
chewy bars
porridge ("Oats so Simple")
Tea bags
etc.
Base camp food bought locally

 

 

Contract with Maximo:
We only used arrieros, cooks etc for our first trip up the Quilcayhuanca valley. We had minibuses taking us up  to the roadhead at Pitec. Then we walked with burros up to the base camp 10-12 km up the valley. On our last day the arriero reappeared without problem to take us back to Pitec where the minibus was waiting for us. All went without hitch. In fact there was much discussion with Maximo about the weight the Burros should carry and after much argument he finally agreed to 35kg per Burro. We ended up significantly over this even with a large pack each to carry ourselves but when Maximo arrived he lifted the bags and announced they were fine. On top of that the next morning when the Arrieros arrived they raced around picking up every pack in site and loading up the burros with all the planned packs and our packs we had planned to carry. I estimate the final weight they were carrying was probably around 50kg each. The initial contract is detailed below but as is the way with these things a number of things were missed out and the final contract is shown afterwards!

Initial Contract

  Dollars
Cocinero (cook) 9 days 180
Arriero (mule handler) 4 days 40
5 Burros (mules) 4 days 100
Gas cooker and gas 9 days 40
Minibus to roadhead & return 50
  410

Half paid up front with signed contract half at end.
This is about $300 less than the agencies were quoting.

Final Contract
My apologies for spelling and mixed language but it is copied verbatim from Maximo's handwritten contract!

Yo, Mike Franklin (Passport No. XXXXXXXXX), tomo los servicios del senor Maximo Gamarra con DNS No. 31920075, para el trabajo de caminando y andenismo, ruto Quilcayhunaca por espacio de 9 dias con el siguiente trato:
Cocinero 200 (Cook for 10 days)
Arriero 40 (arriero for 4 days)
Burros 120 (mules for 4 days)
Cocina y balon de gas 60 (cooker and gas)
Transporte x 2 50 (transport to Pitec and back at end)

Adelanto $225    (paid in advance)
Despues $225    (paid afterwards)

Fecho de Salida 15 Julio 03 Retorno 24 Julio 03
Trato = para 6 personas

Para constancia firmamos ambos

Signatures Mike Franklin                       Maximo Gamarra

Timings (primarily for meeting up with the arrieros)

Out Return
Huaraz 1300 Base camp 1000
Pitec 1430 Pitec 1300
Desayuno 0700    
Arriero 0800    

Lago Paron
For Lago Paron we took a taxi from Caraz and carried all our supplies for several days in. You can get porters to carry stuff from the dam (around 2-4 hours) but the path is too rough in places for mules. So long as you are only going in for three or four days and don't mind carrying a heavy pack many areas can be approached in this way, however you then run the risk of having your stuff stolen whilst climbing - regrettably this does happen on a regular basis though we had no problems. This is one advantage of having a cook as he will also be watching your kit. You can hire a camp guard but for a few dollars more you might as well have a cook!