While we were in Pisac, during the first weekend of the Maymester, we travelled up a mountain to visit ruins of an Incan city. We drove up to the top of the mountain, and after touring the ruins, we hiked back down. We hadn’t gone too far when we followed an arrow to find ourselves stuck on a trail, with a few different options to get down to the next ruins and the rest of the trail down.
The first was a steep, narrow trail that was lined with cacti. It was basically straight down the side of the mountain, and you could barely see the trail unless you were standing right in front of it. At the time we found the trail, we thought it might be the only way down the mountain. We debated for a bit about trying to go down that way, but ultimately decided that it was too dangerous and turned back.
Not too far away, we found another trail. Unlike the first one, it wasn’t lined with cacti (although there were a few on the sides) and it wasn’t quite as steep. We decided that this trail had to be the easier one, so that was the one that we chose. Still, we had to climb down carefully, one by one, and at times I, at least, had to crab-walk down to make sure that I kept my balance. It was rocky and pretty steep, but all in all not too awful to get down.
So we got down to the ruins, having climbed down the easy trail, right? Wrong. The second we reached the ruins and looked around, we could see a nice, wide, gently sloping trail that we could have easily walked down in at least half (probably a third) the time, if we had just gone a little farther past the second trail.
Overall, the hike wasn’t too difficult. Once we reached our fiftieth flight of stairs to go down, I was ready to ban stairs from the world in general, but in my opinion, the view definitely made it worth it.