Kayakers Guide to Whitewater of Peru

Cosñipata

The Rio Cosñipata is one of the princiapal tributaries of the Alto Madre de Dios River in the Department of Cuzco. It is a high jungle run of incredible beauty with good bird watching.

It is now commercially rafted in an enjoyable 9 km, class 3-4 stretch. Trips start in Cuzco and usually encompass several days of multi-sport activities such as mountain biking, bird watching, and whitewater. If interested in commercial trip contact Pepe Lopez of Apumayou Expediciones of Cuzco http://www.apumayo.com

Trips normally start at or above the town of Patria elevation approximately 650 meters and takeout 9 or more km downstream at Pillcopata elevation 527 meters.  3 Km below town of Patria the river join the Pilcomayo then another 2 km downstream the Rio Queros enters and from this point the river is called Madre de Dios.

One can take out in Pillcopata, but if well planned, a logistically more challenging option is to continue downstream at least two more days to the Manu National park. Here one can visit the park and possibly return by small plane to Cuzco or put all gear in a pecky pecky motorized river boat and begin long trek downstream to Puerto Maldonado.

To reach put in or takeout from Cuzco take main road south towards Sicuani 15 km and turn east on gravel road for 17 km to Huancarani then another 49 km to Paucartambo. From here it is an arduous 25 km climb up to Tres Cruces which at sunrise offers spectacular colors in the sky due to refractions of light coming off the jungle canopy thousands of meters below.

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