The alarm goes off and I eagerly try to locate my phone, which has gotten lost somewhere in the thick layers of my down sleeping bag. Luckily it is still fairly warm inside the sleeping bag, although my nose feels like it is freezing right off my face. I manage to quiet my cellphone and it doesn’t take too long before realising where I am and why the alarm went off at 5.30am: I quickly unzip the tent and the turquoise lake right in front of us is already reflecting vibrantly, even though the sun hasn’t rose yet! All of a sudden I am completely awake – we survived a cold night in front of Laguna 69, the glacier peaks are starting to turn orange and it is going to be a good day – I am sure of that!

Laguna 69: a beautiful lake, hidden in the Huascarán National Park, Peru. After acclimatising to the altitude it is a wonderful hike, especially when you opt for going without an organised tour. The best part: sleeping next to a beautiful lake surrounded by glaciers, all by yourself!

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