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Was located in the hills forty-five minutes by foot directly north of Levanto.  This semi-fortified city was built on top of the Puma-Urko Ridge, and sprawled down the southern slopes.  In the Pre-Inca era, it’s population might have been as large as that of KUELAP.  There was no doubt that Yalap was once a wealthy residential community, unlike the military installation of Kuelap.  It’s defensive walls were not as high nor as formidable, and in some cases vertical seams and 90 degree corners showed evident structural weakness.


The southern Exposure of the main wall of the upper village had an interesting but simple decorative fretwork band.  Decorations on the defensive walls of the lower village (through which passed the road to Chachapoyas) sprawled further down hill to the east.  Here, I saw a beautiful fretwork band composed of rhomboids similar to those seen at Cerro Olan.  Unfortunately, the walls just below the road are still covered in dense brush.

The circular habitations at Yalap were in a very tumbled state.  It has recently been discovered that many of the pre-inca towns were deliberately destroyed bye the Spaniards, in order to force their populations into the “Repartimientos”, a Crown Policy instituted in 1538.

References:  Garcilazo de la Vega, El Inca.  Reichlen. Espinoza Soriano. Savoy. CHACHAPOYAS, THE CLOUD PEOPLE By Morgan Davis – 1988


The population center of Curacazgo Llauantu was spread around three sides of a high ravine open on its southern exposure and watered by the AYSHPACHACA CANAL, coming from the northeastern puna.  It has been suggested that this sophisticated canal, 28 kilometers long, had ritual as well as utilitarian significance within a U-shaped topography (Muscutt, Lee & Sharon 1993;24-8).  At the head of the ravine, at 2,800+ 100 meters elevation, were two principal urban sectors, hatun llajtacuna:  YALAP and  SAN PEDRO DE WASHPA (Reichlen & Reichlen 1950; 231 & 2).  Supporting these two urban sectors were at least seven secondary llajtacuna, all inside the same ravine. 

ROS-URCO was a luxurious residential section attached to YALAP, while PULLAN was likewise associated with SAN PEDRO DE WASHPA, but a short distance downhill.  PURUN LLAJTA, located in modern District Maino, was another hatun llajta at a higher altitute to the east.

Ayspachaca Inca Canal

References:  Garcilazo de la Vega, El Inca.  Reichlen. Espinoza Soriano. Savoy. CHACHAPOYAS, THE CLOUD PEOPLE By Morgan Davis – 1988


Was located at the far southwest on the ridge of the ravine.  The Qapaq Nan (Inca Road), coming north from Curacazgo Suta, climbed that ridge, passing through the village, before branching east, then north, then west.  Before 1475 + 5, the nine llajtacuna inside this huge ravine had, in conservative figures, 2,500+ 500 circular habitations, accommodating 15,000 + 1,000 inhabitants.

When the Inca armies invaded the curacazgo, they deported as political mitmajcuna over half the population, and the vacancies were only partially filled by loyal colonists from the south.  Peter Lerche (pc ’92) carefully pointed out that very large numbers were deported, but statistics were not available, and that when the Conquistador Alvarado passed throught the curacazgo (tribe) for the first time the llajta of YALAP was already an abandoned ruin. (Soon after, the new colonial capital, sometimes called Rebanto, was established about four kilometers downhill from YALAP.)

Not only were the locals rebellious during the Incanato, but the Chachapoya ethnic groups in general fell into chaos as the Tahuantinsuyu began to crumble after 1532.  It was this resentment and confused violence that Alvarado galvanized into the Spanish-Chacha alliance which routed the Incas in the region of Cochabamba (Espinoza S. 1967). 

……….. the modern village of Collacruz was built among the ruins of the pre-Incaic Llajta, and all the stone used in local construction had been taken from the ancient circular habitations and terraces, or andenes.  The YURAC-URCO Project’s exclusive demand on my time did not permit me to make a focused study either of the modern village or of the surrounding ruins.  The incidental information was gathered during my casual movements, and from the hearsay of the Cruzenos whom I came to know well over the period of eight months.  Important points were clarified by Peter Lerche, while the data from YURAC – URCO was accurate within the limits of reason.

The name of Collacruz suggested some of the characteristics and activities of this small llajta which was the southern gateway to Curacazgo Llauantu.  It was a hybrid Aymara-Spanish word meaning crossroads of the Colla people.  In its position at two major junctions of the Qapac Nan (Inca Road), the village was probably a way station, or large tambo, used by passing tribute trains, armies, or mitmajcuna in transit to distant pints throughout the Tahuantinsuyu. 

Information taken from: LA CASA REDONDA AND YURAC – URCO by Morgan Davis A report on an archaeological reconstruction done by the community of Collacruz in 1992.


The site has a Quechua name, YURAC-URCO, meaning the white mountain, and consisted of a single stone retaining wall built on a hillside.  This wall, constructed in fine block masonry, curved in a nearly perfect semicircle for about 180 degrees, and was 23.20 meters long.  At its highest point on the northwest exposure, it rose 2.50 meters, while its ends merged with the rising hillside.  The Qapaq Nan passed within 40 meters, to the east, and between the two was a small cased spring………


Yurac-Urco was found at the top of a high ridge at 2,650 + 50 meters above sea level, in the hills east of the Utcubamba River.  The Qapaq Nan (Inca Road), coming northward 35+ 5 kilometers from La Jalca Grande, through Cundechaca, passed the site just before entering Collacruz, a village of 47 families or about 200 inhabitants.  Collacruz was more of a crossroads than a town, in so far as only a line of pretty houses stretched for a kilometer and a half on either side of the road…………


Information taken from: LA CASA REDONDA AND YURAC – URCO by Morgan Davis A report on an archaeological reconstruction done by the community of Collacruz in 1992.

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