Reckless foreign tourists causing ecological damage at Laguna Willcacocha

T he Association of Official Guides in High Mountains in Ancash (AGOEMA) has expressed its dismay on social networks. Yesterday, so shows a recent photograph published by AGOEMA, some irresponsible foreigners decided to camp at Lake Willcacocha and even to set up tents. Additionally, some tourists even decided to go for a swim and were chasing the birds and ducks in their natural habitat.

AGOEMA clarified on their Facebook page that it´s strictly forbidden to swim any of the lakes located in the Cordillera Blanca and Negra. However, so they denounced a couple of week ago, Laguna 69 is suffering the same fate. Despite the fact that most groups visiting Laguna 69 are accompanied by ´official´ guides, the lake is frequently used by tourists as a fresh water swimming pool. Tourists can be fined by park guards if they get caught, and in the worst case scenario, even being expelled from Peru.

Willcacocha Lake is located at 3,750 metres above sea-level and is an interesting two to three hour acclimatisation hike. This lake, because of its great location, offers an exceptional viewpoint towards the Cordillera Blanca, allowing to identify peaks as the Huandoy North, the Huascaran, Chopicalqui, Hualcan, Vallunaraju, Ocshapalca, Ranrapalca, Palcaraju, Churup, Chinchey, San Juan, Huamasraju, Huatzan, Cashan, Shacsha, Pucaraju, Muruaraju and Caullaraju to the south. The name Willcacocha comes from Quechua, Willka meaning grandson and Cocha means lake or lagoon

 

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