It's been bucketting down in the Andes near Cusco the past two weeks and the rivers have swollen to an extent that a few bridges have been knocked out and the rail line to Aguas Calientes at the base of Machu Picchu is out.
Therefore any travellers who were on the Inca Trail, or day visiting from Aguas Calientes are stranded.
There's also been several landslides and an Argentinian traveller and a loca guide were washed off the trail and died. There are local reports that a few more locals have been swept away in the Sacred Valley.
Western travel agencies have staff at Aguas Calientes managing their groups who all seem safe. They have plenty of food and water and rum.
The local government called a state of emergency a few days ago and the military are sending in helicopters to start ferrying people out. They seem to have two operating and the police one. The US also has three helicopters in the area and they seemed to have evacuated all the Americans.
The extent of the damage is unclear at the moment. Teams of Peruvians from the local government are assessing the Inca Trail and are checking the train route. Initially news reports said MP would be closed for three weeks, but then the news reported that it would be just 3-4 days.
Obviously there's plenty of confusion and no one has the exact overall picture, which may not be know until the rains subside and investigatiors can get into the region. It's going to depend a lot on the weather over the next few days.
Importantly, westerners stuck in Aguas Calientes seem to be safe in either hotels or under shelter. They have facitities and mobile phone access. The ones we have spoke to directly are showing true fine Aussie spirit.
(kennas, reporting from his apartment in Lima)