Machu Picchu Expedition
All adult survivors 18 and older are invited to join TAPS on the Machu Picchu Expedition as we find new purpose, gain radical perspective and remember what it feels like to live with determination.
TAPS Expeditions are outdoor skills-based events that require dedication, preparation and a real sense of adventure.
Share a truly fearless journey with fellow TAPS survivors as we trek ancient trails in the Andes Mountains of Peru to Machu Picchu. Every step on this journey will move us farther away from feelings of doubt, fear and insignificance.
As we trek along the Salkantay Trail to Machu Picchu, the lost city of the Incas that sits high in the Andes, we’ll immerse ourselves in the vast landscape and Incan history of Peru. Together, we’ll honor our loved ones, the land and the people who live upon it.
The trek to Machu Picchu is both exhilarating and exhausting. You can learn more by reading the trip overview on the Alpine Ascents website and checking out photos from the 2017 TAPS Machu Picchu Expedition.
Prior to the trip, we’ll hold monthly team meetings via conference calls or video calls. These are mandatory for participants and will help us form a team bond and gain familiarity with each other. During the meetings, we’ll discuss training regimens, gear lists and more. You’ll also have access to the TAPS Expeditions Facebook group, which will include participants from this expedition, as well as those from previous expeditions so you can ask questions and learn from their experiences.
Day 1: On Aug. 24, we’ll depart the U.S. to fly to Cusco, Peru.
Day 2-3: Once we arrive in Peru, we’ll spend our first days acclimatizing while we tour the city of Cusco and the Sacred Valley.
Day 4: We’ll rise early and begin our trek to Machu Picchu along the Salkantay Trail. On the way to our campsite, we'll learn about the local and traditional lifestyles. Walking: 4-5 hours
Day 5-6: Over the course of two days, we'll cross the highest point of the trail, the Salkantay Pass at 14,993 feet, and descend through a bamboo forest with a great variety of flora and fauna and a gorgeous view of the Andes. Walking: 7-9 hours
Day 7: We'll spend our day hiking in the upper jungle surrounded by even more flora and fauna. We'll be treated to warmer temperatures as we camp in the wet part of the forest. Walking: 5-6 hours
Day 8: We'll continue our trek on the traditional Inca Trail and be treated to our first glimpses of the Machu Picchu citadel. After our long journey, we’ll enjoy a night in a hotel in Aguas Calientes. Walking: 5-6 hours
Day 9: Our day will start early with a tour of Machu Picchu. After our tour, we’ll return to Cusco for our final night together at our hotel.
Day 10: We’ll say goodbye and catch our flights back to the U.S.
*Note: Please be aware that this itinerary is subject to change due to a number of reasons, including weather and participant skill level.
This schedule was created uniquely for TAPS by our guide partners at Alpine Ascents. For specific questions on the itinerary, please contact TAPS Expeditions staff at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We fully expect your team members to become your family and an ongoing support network long after the expedition is over. You'll be provided with a directory following the trip to keep in touch with each other.
Expeditionary costs are not covered by TAPS. The cost of the trip is $3,250 per person (with a minimum of eight participants) and doesn’t include your international airfare to and from Cusco, Peru, passport fees, souvenirs or gratuities paid to guides. Fees for the trip will be paid directly to our trekking guides at Alpine Ascents.
You’ll need to arrange airfare to and from Cusco, Peru, but will not need to secure any further transportation. You will also need to secure a U.S. passport.
While in Cusco and Aguas Calientes we’ll stay in hotels. During our hike to Machu Picchu, we’ll camp in tents. All lodging, including hotels and camping, are included in your trip costs.
This rigorous expedition doesn’t require mountaineering experience but does necessitate that you be physically fit and healthy. The expedition is physically, mentally and emotionally challenging, and your current health should be taken into consideration before you apply. All participants are asked to follow a two-month training regimen, at a minimum. A fitness program will be provided that includes four workouts a week and prepares you for the physical demands and geographical and climate variations for the ascent.
Applications are now being accepted until Friday, Feb. 2. Applications will be reviewed every two weeks, so we encourage you to apply early. If more applications are received than we have slots available, we will do a random drawing from qualified applicants.
We encourage you to consider your current physical and emotional strength and resilience before applying.
It’s our goal to ensure that as many survivors as possible have the opportunity to experience healing in the wilderness. Preference will be given to applicants who haven't participated in a TAPS Expedition within the past year, so long as they are capable of participating in all activities.
If you have any questions, please email email@example.com or call 800-959-TAPS (8277).