7 Days - 6 Nights
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7 days - 6 nights
Day 1 - El Calafate - El Chaltén
Reception and transfer from Calafate Airport to the hotel in Chaltén.
Day 2 - Valle del Río Las Vueltas & Navigation by the The Desert Lake
We leave to go the extreme south of the Desert Lake, wrongly named Laguna del Desierto. We travel for 38 kms by a dirt road that snakes along the Río Vueltas Valley. The landscape that we watch is typical of Andes Patagonia surrounded by mountains, forests, water falls and mirror like waters that combine to present a natural harmony. We can chose between a walk until the Huemul Glacier or a navigation to the icy waters of the lake. The hike is short at only one hour but has a pronounced ascent that requires a reasonable effort. This is a private area and therefore there is an entrance charge. We can also go until Laguna Larga and Diablo but the route takes another four hours. Those who decide not to take the walk can enjoy the navigation of Lago del Desierto where the boat goes from the south to the north of the lake.
Once on land we walk to the Centinela Viewpoint that is only 12 minutes and is accompanied by some fantastic views. Lago del Desierto is located in a valley that stretches 15 kms between the Andes Mountain Range, close to the O?Higgins Lake, and the Fitz Roy Mountain. The mountain chains that enclose the valley are the Occidental Massif which is made up of the Marconi chain and the Occidental Massif amongst others. The Río Las Vueltas starts from this lake and flows through the Azul Lake before finishing in the Viedma Lake.
Day 3 - Trekking to Laguna de los Tres or Trekking to the Capri lagoon
Trekking to Laguna de los Tres
Free day to rest or do some hiking. Depending on the physical conditions we recommend making the trek to the base of the Cerro Fitz Roy, the three Lagoon (moderate, 8 hours) or the hike to Laguna Capri (easy, 4 hours)
Trekking to the Fitz Roy Mountain: Laguna de los Tres
Breakfast at the boarding contracted. We have a day off in El Chaltén. We suggest to undertake the most important trekking in Los Glaciares National Park. The trail to do this is perfectly signaled. We get to the first viewpoint, with the view of the Piedras Blancas Glacier, after about two hours of hiking by the Río Blanco Valley and walking through the ancient forests of nothofagus. We go a little further and arrive to the Poincenot Camping Site which finishes on the Río Blanco. From here we climb up a steep slope which rises 400 metres until the Mountain Fitz Roy Base: Laguna de los Los Tres.
The trail finishes on the edge of a glaciatic moraine. From here we have an amazing view of the lagoon and its glacier together with the classic profile of the Fitz Roy Mountain, that appears from the top of its envelope of ice at a height of more than 2,000 metres. If we feel like going a little further we can turn off to go to the Laguna Sucia viewpoint from where we can see the Viedma Lake and the hanging glaciers. We return to the town going to Laguna Capri. If we are not late we should be arriving at about 18 hrs. In case you require a mountain guide please advise in advance.
Trekking to the Capri lagoon
The trekking to Laguna Capri offers a unique relaxing view for the eyes and it is ideal for those who do not have the time to take a whole day walking, like going to the Laguna de Los Tres or Laguna Torre. Our main objective is to arrive to the first viewpoint of the Fitz Roy Mountain. We begin from the town of El Chaltén, it is an easy trekking although the slope is pronounced for a stretch of about 2 hours, rising some 350 metres. The first part is the same as Los Tres track until we arrive at a natural rocky viewpoint where we can turn off to the south until the camping site. At the viewpoint we will have a privileged view of the Torre Mountain and its surrounding ice needles such as Poincenot, Saint Exupéry, Mermoz and Guillaumet. We stop just a few minutes before entering the Capri Camping Site in order to see the Laguna Capri. We return by the same trail to our lodgings in the town.
Day 4 - Trekking to the Torre Mountain
This is one of the most traditional treks in Los Glaciares National Park. The trail that we take goes to Laguna Torre and goes through a really beautiful landscape. The route starts in El Chaltén and goes along the Río Fitz Roy and starts with a pronounced slope and then the path becomes flatter until we reach our first resting point after about two hour hike. At this stop we can see the mountain chain of the Torre Mountain, the Las Adelas Chain and some of the Fitz Roy Mountain.
We carry on with few more rises until the source of the river and arrive at the De Agostini Camping Site after about another hour of walking along the signaled track. A little more effort and we going along the cross of the moraines we can see in front of us the Laguna Torre. Here we have incredible panoramic views of the Torre Mountain, sculptured by the ice needles of the Egger, Standhard, Bifida and the Adelas Chain that shows the mountain glaciers that pour their waters into the Laguna Torre.
Day 5 - Viedma Lake Navigation & Minitrekking to the Viedma Glacier
We leave from the Túnel Bay Port in the northerly direction to El Chaltén, in Los Glaciares National Park, in order to navigate on the Viedma Lake disembarking at the Viedma Glacier and walking to its interiors. The Viedma Lake is some 78 kms in length and is the largest one caused by glacier abrasion and the second largest in the Park (the Upsala Glacier is the largest). It is fed by its glacier of the same name that is in the west.
The Viedma Glacier has a breadth of some 5.000 metres, a height of 50 metres and an area of circa 1.000 kms2 and originates from the Continental Patagonian Ice Fields between the Huemul and Campana Mountains taking their ice and tipping it into the lake. Once we board the vessel we go to the south accompanied by the views of the Fitz Roy and Huemul Massifs and the impressive icebergs. In the middle of the morning we arrive at the Viedma Glacier and we descend in a rocky area to go and see the ice caverns and other glacier formations that are particular to this zone. Here we are given some information about the glaciers and then we continue our trekking to the erosion zone in front of the glacier.
With the help of crampons we ascend in order to start a walk over the icy structures for about 3 hours where we could see crevices and drainage areas. Once we finish the trekking to the interior of the caves we return to the boat to take a trip along the front of the glacier. We have lunch on board (the box lunch is not included) and in the afternoon we return to Túnel Bay.
Day 6 - Trekking to Pliegue Tumbado or Trekking to Piedra del Fraile
Breakfast in the Hotel. We can choose one of the two trekking.
Trekking to Pliegue Tumbado
This walk is a very good complement to the others in order to really get to know this part of Los Glaciares National Park. Pliegue Tumbado gives us a real dimension of the complete zone once we get there and there we can see well the Río Fitz Roy canyon, the Torre Mountain and Glacier, Lagunas Madre and Hija, the Fitz Roy Mountain and also Laguna Condor. We take a look on the other direction and we are able to see the Viedma lake, the Río Túnel Valley and the Paso de Viento which is the entrance to the Patagonian Continental Ice Fields. This walk begins in the town of El Chaltén, which is the information centre of Los Glaciares National Park. In the first part of the hike we go up steppes and then we continue rising through an ancient forest of nothofagus, mainly made up of lengas and ñires. The Loma del Pliegue Tumbado is found at an altitude of 1500 metres. The trekking has an intermediate difficulty especially in the final stage where we ascend 1.150 metres. This walk is done in approximately six hours.
Trekking to Fraile del Fraile
We leave from the Río Eléctrico Bridge, some 16 kms from El Chaltén. We need to travel to this point in order to start the trekking to the Fraile Stone. It is an easy walk that is almost totally flat. It takes two hours of hiking through ancient forests of nothofagus, between ñires and lengas, and fording streams until we arrive at the Fraile Stone. Here Agostini made a base for his expeditions and we can appreciate the unique image of the north east face of the Fitz Roy Mountain.
Los Troncos Refuge is a good place to camp because it has good facilities, however there is an entrance charge because it is a private camp site. Those that feel like it can hike for another two hours over 5 kilometres to get to the Pollone Glacier. As we follow the banks of the river we arrive soon to the Eléctrico Lake, in presence of the north face of the Fitz Roy and the ice needles of Mermoz and Guillaumet. We then continue until we are affronted by the Pollone and North Fitz Roy Glaciers.
Day 7 - El Chaltén - El Calafate
Breakfast in the Hotel. Transfer Calafate Airport. End of our servies.