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Photographer's Note

The technology of agricultural terraces, both for agriculture and also for drainage, was not invented by the Incas even though they utilized it in a remarkable way.
As more than 50% of the city lays on the slopes of the ridge with over 2000 mm of rain annually (tropics), it is obvious to any layman that some engineer solution must be utilized in order to prevent from the houses to slide down the mountain slopes. Hence come agricultural terraces.
Machu Picchu includes 4.9 Hectare of agricultural terraces which not only serve as part of the drainage system but also to increase the area available for farming (don't forget the ruins situated on top of a long ridge). The jutting rocks serve as steps for the workers so they could easily reach the crops, from one terrace to another.
Actually, this well designed drainage system (which also includes other sophisticated engineering solutions) is one of the reasons why the city was kept in such a good condition for over 500 years.
I came to this point, some 100 meters under the peak of Huayna Picchu (the adjacent mountain to Machu Picchu's ruins) to watch the city from above, when I saw this agricultural terrace, which was a bit different from the well-known terraces you can see in the BG, those of the Machu Picchu ruins. As I can only guess, these terraces belonged to the fort that is situated on top of Huayna Picchu.
The useful information about the terraces is adapted from the World Wide Web:
http://www.waterhistory.org/histories/machu/ which is the article: Water Supply and Drainage at Machu Picchu, By Jeff L. Brown.
PP: Crop, USM (both sharpening and Local Contrast Enhancement)

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