Hike a marathon to Machu Picchu… virtually this January!
Start the New Year off on the right foot by challenging yourself to walk the equivalent distance of this iconic hiking trail (26.2 miles) from, or near to, your own home throughout January.
Hiking the Inca Trail showcases the jaw-dropping beauty of Peru’s mountainous heartland, home to one of the most advanced early civilisations in the world; the Inca. Renowned as one of the top 10 best hikes in the world, the high-altitude trail is a must on every explorer’s bucket list. Along the way, you’ll ‘visit’ some of the Incas’ most impressive feats of agricultural technology and traverse the highest point of the trail at Dead Women’s Pass (4,215m), before passing through the Sun Gate to reach the incredible city of Machu Picchu itself. It’s a truly memorable experience and we’re giving you the chance, wherever you are, to take on this virtual version of the challenge, without the airfare, to help raise vital funds for Pilgrims specialist end-of-life care.
During this extraordinary time of restricted global travel, it is more important than ever to make sure to stay active, feel inspired, exercise and feel connected to one another. Walking is good for us, both for our physical fitness and mental well-being, and you can join our friendly community of Pilgrims Hospice Hikers in our active Pilgrims Hospices Walking and Hiking Facebook group to encourage one another and ask questions.
It’s tough but achievable; with some planning and determination anyone can conquer the Virtual Hike: Inca Trail. Why not complete the hike with friends or family to make the journey even more enjoyable.
The interactive route map
How it works
To take part in the Virtual Hike World Series: Inca Trail, simply enter via the ‘Register Now’ button at the top of this page. Once signed up, you’ll receive instructions on how to record your walking activities and track your progress along the virtual Inca Trail using the award-winning Pilgrims Event App for iOS and Android devices.
It’s free to download from the App Store and Google Play and, along with the free companion app MapMyTracks, will track your walking activities throughout January and update your position along the interactive route map below; so you can see exactly how far you’ve come and how far you have left until you reach Machu Picchu. You can also like and comment on your teammate’s activities, receive up-to-date event information, view a detailed route map, and link your JustGiving page to see how your fundraising is going, all in one place.
The challenge runs from 1st – 31st January and all of your walking activities recorded via the Pilgrims Event App during this time will count towards your overall progress along the Virtual Hike route.
You can use any route you like in order to reach your mileage goal. Under the current conditions, we would suggest the you plan routes that start at, or near to, your home to avoid any unnecessary travel. We would also ask that you do not use the virtual hike to stop at any of our hospice sites, even if you are passing by. The safety of patients and staff is paramount, and your participation in the virtual hike is the best means of showing your support.
So if you have some favourite routes around your local area, then please use those to do your virtual hike. You can break the mileage down into as many days as you need to throughout January. All that matters is you cover the distance. We’re not even going to ask you to verify your mileage, so if you’re a bit over, or under, then that’s fine by us.
Every participant will receive exclusive digital ‘badges’ that they can share as they complete milestones in their journey on social media and elsewhere to show your support for Pilgrims Hospices.
Please note: Only activities recorded using the Pilgrims Event App (MapMyTracks) AND with the activity type of ‘Walking’ and set as ‘Public’ will be included in your progress along the virtual map below. If you wish your runs to count towards your goal, that’s fine, but remember to save them as ‘walking’ activities in MapMyTracks.
Take part without using the app
Don’t worry if you’d rather not use the app, you can still enjoy tracking your miles along the virtual Inca Trail using our printable mile tracker.
Once you have signed up to the virtual hike, you’ll receive all the information you need via an email, including how to download a printable way to track the miles you walk throughout the month. Simply, fill in the number of miles you walk into each day until you’ve reached the fabled lost city of Machu Picchu.
The mile tracker is also a great visual way to show your friends and family how far you’ve come and ask them to donate!
Fun facts about the Inca Trail
- Patallaqta (at mile 4) was burned by Manco Inca Yupanqui, who destroyed a number of settlements along the Inca road system during his retreat from Cusco in 1536 to discourage Spanish pursuit. In part due to these efforts, the Spanish never discovered the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu or any of its settlements.
- After the fall of the Inca Empire in 1572, Machu Picchu was only rediscovered in 1911 by Hiram Bingham. In recent decades, concerns about overuse of the trail leading to erosion has led the Peruvian government to place a limit on the number of people who may hike the trail per season. Just 500 people are allowed on the trail each day, of which only 200 are trekkers, the rest being guides and porters.
- The highest point along the Inca Trail is Dead Woman’s Pass, which elevates you to a breath-taking height of 4,215m above sea level. Translated literally from the Quechua name Abra Warmiwanusca, it is called the Dead Woman’s Pass because when viewed from the valley below it looks like a woman’s supine body.
- Virtual hike entry: £5
Virtual event tracking requires a free MapMyTracks account.
We would encourage you to raise as much sponsorship as you can for your Inca Trail challenge!
While for many of us ‘doing our part’ during the ongoing health crisis means minimising social contact, Pilgrims Hospices nurses and support staff are Still Here; Still Caring and are continuing to provide skilled and compassionate end-of-life care for people living with life-limiting illness across east Kent.
By doing your part for Pilgrims Hospices, you’ll truly be making a difference to the lives of our patients. Here’s how:
- £25 could pay for an hour of specialist nursing care
- £30 could pay for our Community Team to hold a video consultation with a patient in their own home
- £45 could pay for a virtual counselling session for an individual coping with the loss of a loved one
- £90 could pay for all the medicine needed at one of our inpatient units over 24 hours
Take a world tour… virtually
The Inca Trail is just the first monthly challenge in our new Virtual Hike World Series which will take you on a journey to complete walks in some of the most incredible places on Earth and enable you to step your walking up gradually over the months of January, February and March. But you’ll have to wait and see where your virtual hiking will take you next as we reveal the destinations each month!
Achievements are an exciting feature within the Pilgrims Event App. During the Virtual Hike: Inca Trail, as well as the digital milestone badges along the way, you can earn badges within the app for completing all kinds of Achievements.
The app will automatically recognise when you have achieved the criteria for any of the badges and add it to the ‘Achievements’ page within the ‘Profile’ area of the Pilgrims Event App, together with the date that you earned it!
Eg. Once you have recorded your first walk during an event, either by MapMyTracks recording or by a manual mileage upload, you will earn the Off the Mark badge.
Full list of walking badges to achieve
- Off the Mark: Complete your first walk during this event.
- Trailblazer: Complete ten walks during this event.
- Walk in the Park: Complete a walk of at least 5 miles during this event.
- Off the Beaten Path: Complete a walk of at least 10 miles during this event.
- Finding your Stride: Cover at least 25% of the event distance.
- On the Right Track: Cover at least 50% of the event distance.
- On the Home Stretch: Cover at least 75% of the event distance.
- Finisher: Complete the full event distance and cross the finish line.
- Backyard Explorer: Log over 10 hours of walking during this event.
- Scrapbooker: Upload at least one photo during this event.
- Super Saturday: Log an activity on the first Saturday of this event.
- Hill Seeker: Climb the height of Ben Nevis (1345 m) during this event.
Contact name: Robert Grew
Phone: 07710 854029