"Machu Picchu Overlook" by Catherine Sherman.
Morning clouds swirl over Huayna Picchu (young peak), which towers over the Machu Picchu (old peak) citadel.
Tourists explore the ruins of this Inca city, thought to be an estate of the Inca emperor Pachacuti, who ruled 1438 to 1472. For years, I had hoped to visit this mystical place, and here I was, a little out of breath because of the high Andes altitude, but very happy. My family was here, too. My son and daughter climbed Huayna. The Incas built a trail up the side of the Huayna Picchu and built temples and terraces on its top. The trail to reach it is very steep and narrow, but the view (I hear) is amazing. The peak of Huayna Picchu is about 8,920 feet (2,720 meters) above sea level, or about 1,180 ft (360 meters) higher than Machu Picchu. I had signed up to climb it, but I didn't get any higher than a few yards up its base.
Machu Picchu was built around 1450, at the height of the Inca Empire and was abandoned in 1572. This...