PHOTOGRAPHER'S JOURNAL: As we climbed above the terraces we had not yet seen Machu Picchu, 60 or 70 miles downstream in the depths of the valley. I wondered if anything could really be more spectacular than this citadel. We wound through narrow passageways along one of many paths through dwellings and by fortifications and scaled the heights to altars of ritual and turrets of vigilance and to the, so called, hitching post of the sun which casts no shadows on the equinox. It was a glorious morning.
In retrospect, having now been to Machu Picchu, and without diminishing the beauty of this place at all, the ruins at Pisac are of the earth, even earthy. Machu Picchu is of another dimension entirely and more amazing for having been here first. Together, they are the tangible roots of those who dwell in the Urubamba Valley.
I found a particularly good discussion of the ruins at Pisac here: http://enperublog.com/2009/07/20/inca-pisaqa-the-ruins-of-pisac/. At the bottom of the page are particularly good images of the ruins.