Patagonia 2022

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Patagonia 2022

Postby Geevesy » Tue 03 May, 2022 12:47 pm

My wife and I were lucky enough to get out of the country for a 6 week trip around Patagonia in March-April this year. This has been on my list for quite some time, well over a decade, and to say I'm glad we got there and saw the sights we saw would be a massive understatement. I thought it might be good to provide an 'updated' trip report for the areas we visited, I found the advice on this forum from previous trips invaluable, so best to pay it forward.

The walks we completed in Chile/Argentina were as follows (in order of completion):
1. Day walk in Huerquehue National Park, near Pucon
2. Day walk around Volcano Lanin, near Pucon
3. Short walk to Cerro Dorotea, next to Puerto Natales
4. Torres Del Paine, O Circuit (8 days), plus a couple of other short days walks in the NP prior to starting
5. Day walk to Cerro Bandera, near Puerto Williams
6. Overnight walk to the pass on the Lago Windhond track, also near Puerto Williams
7. Glacier Huemal, near El Chalten
8. Three days around Monte Fitz Roy near El Chalten

Firstly, I got most of my information from the Lonely Planet trekking in the Andes book, and although a bit old now, was still pretty relevant.

So here is something to whet the appetite before I drill down into each area seperately...

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Sunrise at Torres Del Paine
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby Geevesy » Tue 03 May, 2022 1:08 pm

So the first area we visited was around Pucon, and after catching and then recovering from COVID, I was keen to get into the hills.

Huerquehue National Park is quite renowned in the area for its short day walks to scenic lakes and mountains. As I was still in recovery mode we opted for the 'classic' day walk to the plateau with lakes, almost like a Chilean Labyrinth.

The walk starts from the end of the road at Lago Tinquilco, road being a loose term as it was a bit rough towards the end in our little VW sedan. Normally walkers have to road bash from the Guarderia (Visitors Centre), about half way around the lake, but instead we camped the night before at Camping Olga, so we were allowed to drive. It's a beautiful spot with a friendly doggo.

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Camping Olga's resident doggo


As this was our first Chilean national park, we learn a few valuable lessons on day 1:
1. Chilean National Parks always cost to enter
2. Chilean National Parks have unusual opening hours - for example Huerquehue closes at 2:00pm. It's also closed on Mondays for some unknown reason.
3. Always make sure you get your slip of paper to show you've paid, or have a good grasp of spanish :lol:

The walk itself if very nice, a steady but not huge climb through native rainforest (and bamboo :?) to a lookout point back towards Volcano Villarrica, then onto the plateau where you can basically choose you own adventure around the network of tracks. Apparently this park has the worldn't smallest deer and tarantulas, but we only saw cows... go figure.

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Mirador over Lago Tinquilco and Volcano Villarrica


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Huerquehue Lakes


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Small peak above the plateau


Overall it was a cool place to stretch the legs and get out into the bush. It's actually quite popular, especially with day trippers from Pucon, but we enjoyed camping up there beforehand.
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby Geevesy » Tue 03 May, 2022 1:15 pm

The second walk we did was a short walk near Volcano Lanin, which is a spectacular beast. This walk was also surprisingly popular, with lots of families exploring the area. The walk takes off from the crest of the hill on your way to the border with Argentina along Route 199. It's marked on Google as Sendero Lagos Andinos. We were only out for 2-3 hours in total and we took our time.

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Scenery in the valley below the pass


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Volcano Lanin in Mt Doom Mode


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Lunch spot on the edge of the lake. Note the Araucaria trees, a feature of the area.
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby Geevesy » Tue 03 May, 2022 1:28 pm

We then flew south to get into the real reason we were there, Patagonia.

Puerto Natales is the 'capital' of Patagonian trekking in Chile, it's a funny town that is almost reluctantly bringing itself up to western standards for a tourist mecca. It basically exists now purely as the gatway to Torres Del Paine. As such there plenty of walking shops with equipment for hire and purchase.

One thing we were expecting to see and did not is any kind of dehydrated food. In the past when I've walked overseas I've struggled with finding powdered milk so we lugged that all the way from Tasmania just to find there were ailes of the stuff in the supermercados, but absolutely nothing dehydrated. So it was old school for us, buying packets of pasta and rice and getting creative with small sachets of sauce and the veggies on offer (read: not many). There is a large supermarket in town, the Unimarc, plus 2 other smaller places that generally have the same thing but the occasional gem. There is also a wholefoods type store that does loose nuts, lots of dried fruit and peanut butter.

Near Puerto Natales there is a short walk you can do to Cerro Dorotea, where you pay (of course) to go through someones paddock and up the hill behind. It was here I got my first up close view of the Lenga forests of Patagonia, a very close relative to Tassie' fagus. From here on out it would be a feature of every walk we did.

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Wind sculpted trees


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Looking down on Puerto Natales


After this short warm up it was time to get serious and head to Torres Del Paine...
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby Geevesy » Tue 03 May, 2022 2:15 pm

Torres Del Paine is famous the world over, and justifiably so, with its huge spires of granite and azure lakes promising amazing walking. There are two main overnight walks to do, the 'W' and the 'O' (also the 'Q', but I won't get into that). The 'W' is the popular one because it sees the big ticket items of the park, is reasonably easy, and has fantastic facilities along the way. The 'O' is the W plus the backside of the massif. If you've ever done any research on this areas I'm sure you're familiar with the differences. People who do the O recommend the O over the W, myself included, for a whole bunch of reasons. Basically, if you have time do the O, you won't regret it.

The biggest pain with walking in TDP is the booking system... basically there are two operators, Vertice and Fantastico Sur, who operate all the campsites/refugios in the park. Vertice are great, Fantistico Sur not so great. As soon as you book your flights book your trip in TDP, it fills up quickly, even this year with COVID and all the travel restrictions.

There are also a bunch of short day walks in the park, which we decided we would check out the day before we started the O. This was probably the best decision we made for the entire holiday, although it does create some logistical headaches.

We left Puerto Natales at 7:15am (the last bus) for TDP, a journey of 2-2.5 hours, could be less but they do the classic 'stop for breakfast/snack/toilet at this place which also happens to have a bucket tonne of souvenirs' trick. Roads are good, and you get to see lots of Guanacos. The first stop in the national park itself is Laguna Amarga, also the Guarderia, where you get you ticket checked, or buy a ticket if you haven't already. Because of COVID all tickets had to be bought online prior to going to the park to restrict numbers.

If you were going to just start walking you would transfer here to a shuttle (CLP3000 cash) for the 10 minute trip to Hotel Las Torres. We however stayed on the original bus which kept going through the park stopping a few times on its way to Administracion. We got off at Camping Pehoe, pronounced Pay-way. The weather was slowly improving, and the view from here has to be seen to be believed.

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Camping Lake Pehoe


We sent up our tent and then hit the trails... well, kind of. One thing about TDP is it is MASSIVE and do you think there is an easy way to get around???? No... there is not. There are no shuttles or anything like that, so it's either hitching (which we did a few times), or walking on roads. We walked north 8km to Mirador Salto Grande, then further on to Mirador Cuernos. On the way we passed Hosteria Pehoe with its famous causeway bridge.

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Above Hosteria Pehoe


The walk out to Mirador Cuernos is a definite would recommend. If the weather is good, and for us it was, the views up to the Cuernos peaks is unreal. It's also a great place to get up close to some Guanacos.

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Near Mirador Salto Grande


Once we finished our day walks we hitched back to Hosteria Pehoe for a lodge dinner and witnessed an amazing sunset. Tomorrow we would start the O.

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Sunset from Hosteria Pehoe


After a restless night partly our own fault (getting a ride with some chilean dudes at night who seemed a little suss) and partly the fault of the Camping Pehoe dude who shreaked along to some weird opera all night, we were ready to start the O. However, because of the aforementioned lack of transport, we had to wait until 13:45 to get a bus from Camping Pehoe back to Laguna Amarga to start. During this time I did a short stroll up Cerro Condor, a worthwhile trip if you're in the area.

Sunrise this day was unforgettable, and probably the highlight of the entire trip for me...

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Sunrise from Pehoe


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Near the top of Cerro Condor


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A condor soars with Paine Grande behind


So we made our way back to Laguna Amarga, where I double checked with the ranger that the 'short cut' from Laguna Amarga to our first night's camp was still open... nope. Turns out there were Puma sightings in the area so the way was shut. We had to get on the previously mentioned shuttle into Hotel Las Torres, and start there. At around 3pm we got going on the O, with only 12 km to go... at least the Torres were out.

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Starting Out


The first day's walk was pretty easy going apart from our heavy packs and lack of fitness. This first part of the O is largely through private property and has a ranch style feel to it. We came across a few horses relaxing after their day's labour, and enjoyed the views along the Rio Paine valley.

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Rio Paine Valley


I was starting to get a bit worried about getting to camp before dark. I'm sure we would have been fine, but out of the blue our newest Gaucho friend, Montcarlo, arrived in a ATV and asked if we wanted a ride into camp - and despite the times where my life flashed before my eyes it was a hilarious trip into Camp Seron, passing other walkers who we didn't have room for. We arrived around 6 and relaxed into camp, we were finally into it, the O circuit!

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Hitching a ride with Montcarlo


To be continued....
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby Geevesy » Wed 04 May, 2022 11:05 am

O Circuit continued...

Camping Seron was one of the more basic camping sites, with only one bathroom/shower for male/female, and a pretty average cooking area. Luckily the weather was good and we could cook out on the platforms. After a chilly and slightly breezy night we were ready to get stuck into Day 2.

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Sunrise at Camping Seron


Day 2 basically follows the course of the Rio Paine counter clockwise around the massif to Lago Dickson, a distance of 19km. It was on this day that we learnt another lesson about the national park, and that is that stoves are banned everywhere except the cooking rooms. Coming from Tassie we were used to Fuel Stove Only national parks, not a big deal and totally understandable. But having our cup of tea at the ranger station half way on Day 2 and promptly being told off for using the stove came to a surprise to us! No wonder the locals carried massive thermoses for their maté....

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Day 2 walking around Lago Paine


Lago Dickson, reached after 5-6 hours, is a magic spot. Glaciers carve down off the Hielo Sur ice cap into the lake, and there is a real sense of wilderness and peace compared to the front of the massif.

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Lenga at Lago Dickson


We heard that the best camping at Dickson was down near the lake, and even though we were later to arrive none of the others had grabbed the spots... winner!

Just before arriving at camp there is a tricky descent down off the moraine to the flats at the lake. It was here that another Aussie we had recently met slipped and badly sprainer her wrist. Initially there was a thought it was broken, so there was talk about getting a truck to pick her up, but it appeared that was logistically too difficult and she was essentially forced to carry on (as she wasn't allowed to backtrack). Another lesson, Chilean response for bushwalking injuries isn't quite as organised as we perhaps first thought. It did make me think whether the EPIRB I had in my pack was going to offer any use at all... I really don't know!

Day 3 dawned after a windy night but to perfect sunshine. This was one of my favourite days of the trip, a fairly gentle but steady climb through Lenga following the Rio Los Perros to Camping Los Perros. It's a short day, but there were plenty of photo opportunities with the beautiful autumn light.

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Morning sunshine on the back of Torres Del Paine massif


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Looking down on Lago Dickson


Camping Los Perros is considered the most 'basic' of the camping areas because it is the only one without a hot shower, but it's still a Vertice site so the layout is good. This part of the track is the most remote and most alpine, so I guess you can forgive them for not having all the luxuries :D . They still had room for beer though :lol:

The next day is the big one as far as O trekkers are concerned. At present, Camping Paso is closed for overnight stops (I probably woudn't stay there anyway if I did it again), so walkers have to cover the distance from Los Perros to Grey in one big day... and it is a big day. The climb to Paso John Garner isn't that bad, there are some beautiful stretches of Lenga and Nirre to walk through, and higher up glaciers overhang the valley on either side.

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Lenga colours


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Climbing


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Looking back down the valley to Los Perros


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Glacier Puma (I think)


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At the top of the pass, looking back the way we came


After leaving at 8am we got to the pass at 11, at a fairly slow pace. But the fun was only just starting...
Last edited by Geevesy on Wed 04 May, 2022 12:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby Geevesy » Wed 04 May, 2022 11:52 am

John Garner Pass is the literal and figurative high point of the circuit, and this is the main reason why the O is better than the W. The view down onto Glacier Grey was mind blowing. I've seen plenty of glaciers in my time but the sheer scale and breadth of what is laid out before is hard to show in photographs, or even describe generally.

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Looking down on Glacier Grey


The descent however is not fun. It's steep (but not Western Arthurs steep) initially, then there are lots of switchbacks to get to the bottom of the main descent. It was here we probably saw the nicest Lenga, especially in Chile, so that was a highlight.

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Lenga and Grey


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The colours are more consistent in Patagonia compared to the Fagus in Tas


Once you reach Camping Paso, the undulations start. This was hard work for the afternoon, and frustrating with a lack of progress, but the constantly changing views of the glacier made up for it. There are three swing bridges on this section which provide some epic photo ops... especially the first one.

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On the first bridge


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The 'nose' of Glacier Grey


Around 5:30-6 we arrived at Camping Grey and joined the big groups of people who were on the W. From here on the facilities would be bigger and more civilised. There is even wifi in most of the refugios. We celebrated with Calafate Sours on the deck at Grey with our Aussie comrades after breaking the back of the O.

The next day was the day where we took advantage of this new luxury. It's a shorter day down to Lodge Paine Grande, and the views back up towards the glacier and over the lake make for a most enjoyable walk.

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Lago Grey


At Paine Grande we spashed out on the USD$110 per night to stay in the lodge and it was totally worth it. By Day 5 we were starting to get over the tent and the thought of a few beers, some wifi and a meat and veg meal was strong. We also got the full board at Paine Grande, so breakfast was included (scrambled eggs, white bread, sugary yoghurt and cereal) and a lunch box (more sugar) was supplied to carry along for the following day. Paine Grande is the biggest lodge on the circuit and the camping is also the most exposed, so I would definitely recommend this is the spot to live it up if you can afford it. Several of our comrades who tented this night ended up with ripped and/or leaking tents.

The next day our luck ran out with the weather, it was windy and showery and got worse as we went. This day we went from Paine Grande to Camping Frances with the aim of going up the Frances valley for a side trip. There was a brief period where Los Cuernos poked through the mist but otherwise it was a head down and trudge on kind of day. Unfortunately we also had to bail on the side trip, so I guess we'll have to go back one day :D

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Los Cuernos towers above


This night we camped at Camping Frances, which was... well, crap tbh. This is where it goes from Vertice back to Fantastico Sur (Seron is also FS). It's set on a steep slope, so the camping is at the top of the hill and the toilet down the bottom, and worse still the 'cooking' area was nothing more than an alcove on the side of a building, open to the weather. Of course the weather was wet too so it was an all round unpleasent experience. Some even go so far as to cook in the toilets!! All of this for the tidy sum of USD$29pp. It was here we ran out of patience and cooked in the vestibule in the tent on the platform. On the plus side the showers were good... but I think camping Frances ranked as the worst spot we stayed.

Next day was also wet, so we got out of Frances ASAP and made our way around to Chileno, our last night. All my fingers and toes were crossed that it would clear in time for Las Torres the following morning. This was a real non-descript day if I'm honest, we were starting to get over it all and just wanted to finish the walk on a high at Las Torres. Chileno was slightly better than Frances, it must be said, however the no cooking rule reached it's zenith here becase there is literally nowhere to cook - dozens of campers stood around wondering how they were supposed to eat. Again, we were sneaky and just cooked in the tent but it's probably the stupidest rule I've seen bushwalking.

So, the final day arrived, and the big moment of visiting Mirador Las Torres was upon us. Alarms were set for 5am and the 2 hour trip up to the mirador was underway. Despite it being freezing the weather was playing ball... but I think we had a last day spring in our step. On the way up/back from the Torres there are a couple of really nice streams filled with Lenga.

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Lenga Cascade


At 7:30am we arrived at Mirador base de las Torres just before the sunrise. It was popular, but the towers were out and anticipation was high. The rule book of CONAF (rangers) struck again, with a ranger getting the lucky job of walking around checking everyone's tickets... I'm not sure what he would have done if you didn't have one considering most had walked 10km in from the car :?.

We also got into trouble for being 1m past a 'do not pass' sign, and we got a stern talking to in spanish and photos taken... guess we're banned for a while???

Anyway, the sun hit and those problems faded away. It's a special moment, seeing Las Torres at dawn, but dare I say it a slight let down. It's not that it isn't spectacular, it definitely is, but we had seen some amazing scenery over the course of the O and this was no where near the top of the list. But we've been there, seen it happen, got the photograph so you've gotta be happy with that.

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The moment everyone comes for...


After spending a bit of time up there soaking it up it was time to leave. The towers lost colour pretty quicky on this day and becomes apparent how bleak it is up there on the moraine. But it was a fantastic way to end the circuit, I'm not sure if I'll call it as the best walk I've ever done, but it would have to be top 3.

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Las Torres - a fitting finale to the O Circuit


And that was that! After 9 days in the park it was time to head back to Puerto Natales and move onto the next phase of our journey....
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby Geevesy » Wed 04 May, 2022 2:56 pm

After the excitement of Torres Del Paine we flew south from Punta Arenas to Puerto Williams, the most southerly town in the world. Our plan was to complete the 4-5 day Dientes Circuit, a rugged range located behind the town. Previous trip reports on this forum were really useful in the planning of this walk.

We'd heard reports of lots of snow that far south, and it was early April by that stage. Our original plan was to do this walk before the O in March but getting COVID forced a reschedule, hence the early April trip. We flew into Puerto Williams and visited the local tour agency to discuss the trek and pick up fuel etc. It was there that we found out that Dientes was closed for the season, a real bummer. Looking at the snow cover on the flight I had a feeling it might have been the case, and beside it would have been a real risk doing the walk even if it was open. As much as it would have been nice to do the walk with the change of the lenga, the fact that there are no facilities on the Dientes make it much more suitable to summer. In fact, in hindsight, this area is the area that most reminded me of Tassie's south west.

In lieu of completing Dientes we had a few options and we decided first do a day walk to Cerro Bandera, or 'Flag Mountain', the first part of the Dientes and a popular day trip. We had perfect weather for this walk and the scenery over the Dientes and the Beagle Channel was excellent. To reach the top from town is only a couple of hours and the track is in excellent condition.

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Puerto Williams from Cerro Bandera


Once on top we explored the plateau, it was all very easy going with only ankle deep snow.

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On the plateau


This was also probably the closest we got to a condor

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Condor near a bluff


Overall this day walk was a really nice day out despite there being some disappointment we couldn't progress into the Dientes. Whether I ever go back in Summer to try again I'm not sure - it's a nice area. I was a bit underwhelmed at the time but that was probably also because I'd just flown in from Torres Del Paine.

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On the way home...


The other walk we did while on the island was a simple overnight walk up the Lago Windhond track to a pass that allowed a glimpse south towards Cape Horn. This walk was the most like SW Tassie I'd done, in the sense it was pretty rough with plenty of mud, trees to climb over and navigation fun. Scenery wise it was quite pretty, luckily we still had the weather on our side.

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Lenga on the way in the valley


We did have a very nice campsite though on this walk, probably wouldn't recommend it in anything but perfect weather, but we were essentially on a ledge overlooking the entire valley and Beagle Channel.

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Campsite view


The next day we walked a little further up the valley to get a view south where we could - it wasn't much, but at least I can say I've been past the 56th parallel.

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View towards the ocean around Cape Horn


Compared to the other trekking we did on the holiday it was a bit of a low point, but in hindsight it was a special place to explore, considering the effort required to get there. One thing about trekking in this area the obvious presence of beavers - their dams can be seen everywhere, and with the snow we even saw a few sets of footprints.

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Beaver Dam with the Dientes behind


The following day we flew back to Punta Arenas and made preparations to head across the border into Argentina, by no means easy in these COVID times...
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby Geevesy » Wed 04 May, 2022 3:33 pm

Ok - into the home stretch now.

Once across the border we headed directly to El Chalten, the 'trekking capital of Argentina'. This town is famous for being right under the east face of Monte Fitz Roy, proabably one of the most spectacular mountains in the world. I'd actually seen Fitz Roy out of the plane window on the flight south to Punta Areanas which was pretty cool, but I was really excited to get to El Chalten and see the beast up close. The day we arrived the weather cleared up enough to get up the Cerro Condor lookout to see what we'd come to see.

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El Chalten with Fitz Roy


Fitz Roy has a rep for having terrible weather, so much so people go to El Chalten for several day and see nothing. Luckily our middle day or two was looking promising, so we tailored our planning to being up near the mountain at this point. This gave us some time before needing to start where we could explore some of the surrounding valleys.

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Laguna del Desierto


A particularly nice and short walk was to Glacier Huemal, near Lago del Desierto. This walk crosses some private land (so $$$) and involves a at first gentle climb, then ropes to get up some steep stuff onto the moraine where you come face to face with a spectacular hanging glacier and lagoon.

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Glacier Huemal


Finally the time had come to strap on the OP Strzelecki one last time and hit the trails around Fitz Roy. The walking around Fitz Roy is very easy, in the sense it is short and the trails are of high quality. As such we weren't that worried when we didn't start walking until 6pm for the 1-2 hour trek into Laguna Capri, a scenic campsite about half way into Fitz Roy. We were also followed by a friendly doggo for the entire of our walk on this day. We woke in the morning to find him gone, only to find him again later in the day further along the track but following some other Australians.... must have liked the accent! :) We christined him El Perro Montcarlo, in honour of our friend at the start of the O circuit.

To say I'm happy we stayed at Laguna Capri rather than the normal campsite at Poincenot is a massive understatement. Whilst the latter is close to the mirador at Laguna de Los Tres allowing a sunrise trip if desired, it is also busier and dirtier. Capri was probably my favourite campsite for the entire trip... truly paradise.

Sunrise from here was another one of those pinch yourself moments...

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Pre-dawn glow


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Fitz Roy all lit up


I'll always remember our morning at Laguna Capri - breaking out the Trangia and having a cup of coffee and breakfast whilst taking in Fitz Roy in all her glory was a trip and life highlight.

After the views of the morning, we were keen to get up to Laguna de los Tres and see it up close while the weather was still good. This is one of those walks where you can't put your camera away and around every corner there is another perfect photo opportunity.... all of the same thing mind, but in the moment it's hard to get enough.

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Getting closer...


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A particularly nice sample of 'burst' lenga


The climb from Poincenot campsite up the moraine to Laguna de los Tres was the most popular walking we did - it was packed! Granted, it was Easter weekend, so there were lots of locals about, but I can't believe how busy it was, right up there with Everest Base Camp. There were plenty of people who really shouldn't have been there, you could tell they weren't prepared for the 20km return daywalk over rocky terrain. The track was actually quite steep, and even with our 15 or so days worth of walking under our belts to this point there was a bit of huffing and puffing going on.

Regardless of how popular it is, cresting the terminal moraine at Laguna de los Tres takes your breath away in every sense of the word...

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Laguna de los Tres - classic Patagonia


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Up close and personal with one of the world's most rugged mountains


Reluctantly we descended the moraine and turned south towards Laguna Torre, located at the base of Cerro Torre. It was at this point the cloud started rolling in. The area around Laguna and Cerro Torre is a crazy jumble of glacies, moraines and sheer walls of rock, and even if there is a bit of cloud about it's a beautiful place to be. I was praying overnight that the weather gods would hear our call and give us one more clear morning of amazing Patagonian scenery but it didn't quite eventuate. The lookout up at Mirador Maestri is a cool sidetrip nonetheless, if not for the Torre but for the glaciers.

I was disappointed to not see the top of Cerro Torre up close on that final day walking in Patagonia. In review on my photos I did notice that on the first night in El Chalten we did actually see the top of it poking over the top of a hill, so I'm claiming it as seen, but it would be great to revist this amazing part of the world in the future.

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Reflecting on a great trip at Mirador Maestri
Last edited by Geevesy on Thu 05 May, 2022 9:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby Eremophila » Wed 04 May, 2022 10:58 pm

Wow. Stunning pics.

Partner and I visited the region in 2011 but only did a few day walks, we didn’t take any gear with us. I had a day circuit walk planned from El Chalten but we were both struck down with a horrible bronchitis, in fact he’d had to miss out on Las Torres due to being ill. Cerro Condor was our only outing in El Chalten but I don’t reckon our photos were as good as yours! We did read all the comments in a visitors’ book about the terrible weather there but we had a couple of postcard days, same in TDP.

Did you have the obligatory afternoon tea after Cerro Dorotea? I remember food and more food being thrust upon us, it was late afternoon and we had a dinner booking. Of course they would have thought we’d be dining at around 11pm…..
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby FionaShedden » Thu 05 May, 2022 9:00 am

Fantastic report. Such an amazing area and your photos are magnificent. Thank you for sharing.
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby north-north-west » Thu 05 May, 2022 9:33 am

I need to rob a bank and get in there while I can still walk.

Thanks for the report and the marvellous (no, not at all jealous) photos.
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby eggs » Thu 05 May, 2022 1:28 pm

Wonderful report and photos Geevesy
Thanks
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby GregG » Thu 05 May, 2022 2:19 pm

north-north-west wrote:I need to rob a bank and get in there while I can still walk.

Thanks for the report and the marvellous (no, not at all jealous) photos.

That is for sure! But how do you get there? I don't think it is possible now to fly directly and how hard is it to meet all the entry rules like visa, covid19, insurance etc I wonder. But looks like it would be incredibly worthwhile.
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby Geevesy » Thu 05 May, 2022 3:26 pm

Thanks all, I'm glad you took the time to read through - I appreciate the comments.

GregG wrote:
north-north-west wrote:I need to rob a bank and get in there while I can still walk.

Thanks for the report and the marvellous (no, not at all jealous) photos.

That is for sure! But how do you get there? I don't think it is possible now to fly directly and how hard is it to meet all the entry rules like visa, covid19, insurance etc I wonder. But looks like it would be incredibly worthwhile.


Direct flights started up again in April - we got one home. It's a little fiddly with the visa and COVID issues but it's not too bad.
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby Geevesy » Thu 05 May, 2022 9:07 pm

Eremophila wrote:Wow. Stunning pics.

Partner and I visited the region in 2011 but only did a few day walks, we didn’t take any gear with us. I had a day circuit walk planned from El Chalten but we were both struck down with a horrible bronchitis, in fact he’d had to miss out on Las Torres due to being ill. Cerro Condor was our only outing in El Chalten but I don’t reckon our photos were as good as yours! We did read all the comments in a visitors’ book about the terrible weather there but we had a couple of postcard days, same in TDP.

Did you have the obligatory afternoon tea after Cerro Dorotea? I remember food and more food being thrust upon us, it was late afternoon and we had a dinner booking. Of course they would have thought we’d be dining at around 11pm…..


Thank you! Shame to hear you had a bad run of luck while you were there health wise. I had also heard stories about afternoon tea at Cerro Dorotea but nothing was on offer while I was there. I think the owner might have popped out so I didn’t see him again :cry: :cry: :cry:
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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby andrewa » Fri 06 May, 2022 7:37 pm

Thanks for posting. Would love to go to Patagonia, although I sort of get the impression it’s all rather “organised”….perhaps like a DIY Overland track? ( not that I’ve done that). I’m quite happy padding around on minor walking routes or deer tracks or river valleys in NZ, and wonder whether that sort of more remote adventure could be had in Patagonia?

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Re: Patagonia 2022

Postby Geevesy » Tue 10 May, 2022 2:17 pm

andrewa wrote:Thanks for posting. Would love to go to Patagonia, although I sort of get the impression it’s all rather “organised”….perhaps like a DIY Overland track? ( not that I’ve done that). I’m quite happy padding around on minor walking routes or deer tracks or river valleys in NZ, and wonder whether that sort of more remote adventure could be had in Patagonia?

A


There are definitely more adventurous walks than the classics we did. One thing that is apparent is that the lack of thick vegetation around the place meaning off-track explorations are a bit more achievable.
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