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Patagonia Trek

Location: Patagonia
  • Difficulty: Demanding
  • Season: Autumn, Spring, Winter
  • Duration: 19 Days
  • Region: South America
  • Type: Trekking
  • Difficulty: Demanding
  • Season: Autumn, Spring, Winter
  • Duration: 19 Days
  • Region: South America
  • Type: Trekking

Tags: hiking, hiking in patagonia, patagonia, patagonia adventure holiday, patagonia hike, patagonia trek, patagonia trekking holiday, trekking in patagonia

About The Patagonia Trek

Located on the southern tip of South America spanning Argentina and Chile, Patagonia is one of the world’s best destinations for trekkers and climbers alike. Our trek in Patagonia is like no other as we take in the best of the region’s most stunning parks; Los Glaciares National Park in Argentina and Torres del Paine National Park in Chile. The two countries are split by the Great Patagonian Ice Cap, the second largest non-polar glaciated area in the world, after Antarctica.

Our 19-day expedition includes a total of 11 days trekking in Patagonia covering a total distance of 176km. We start off with three amazing day hikes from El Chaltén in Los Glaciares National Park, home to the famous peaks of Cerro Torre and Fitz Roy. Each day we complete challenging treks taking in the park’s most stunning locations, including Laguna Torre and Laguna De Los Tres, returning to the outpost town of El Chaltén each evening. It’s a special place steeped in climbing history and folklore. Apart from its infamous granite peaks, Argentinian Patagonia is home to beautiful glaciers, lakes, lenga forest and flower filled meadows.

After warming up in Argentina we move to Torres del Paine in Chile and complete the classic ‘O’ circuit around the Torres del Paine Massif. Although most companies offer the easier ‘W’ circuit, at Earth’s Edge we feel the more remote and complete circuit is a must! Highlights of the eight-day trekking circuit include walking along the remote northern region of the park, crossing the John Gardner Pass (1,200m) which offers stunning views of the Southern Patagonian Ice Cap, the French Valley and trekking to the base of the Torres Towers.

After completing the trek we have time to relax in El Calafate and visit the world famous Perito Moreno Glacier.

Why go Trekking to Patagonia with Earth's Edge

100% Financial Protection – Earth’s Edge is Ireland’s only fully licensed (TA:0711) and financially bonded adventure travel company.

All our Patagonia Treks are led by an experienced Irish guide and doctor who travel with the group from Dublin.

Our packages are inclusive of flights from Dublin, in-country transport, a full local guiding & support team, accommodation, meals on the trek, National Park entry fees, a celebratory meal & an Earth's Edge softshell jacket.

Our 17 day itinerary includes 11 days of trekking in Patagonia, taking in the best of Argentina and Chile.

We use excellent local guides, cooks and porters. We have a strict Responsible Travel Policy and ensure our local partners are treated fairly while we trek in Patagonia.

Training Weekend – Meet an Earth's Edge expedition leader, an Earth's Edge expedition doctor and your fellow Patagonia trekkers two months before departure. Our training weekend consists of a full brief and two hikes in Glendalough, Co. Wicklow.

We have a strict Leave No Trace policy and do everything we can to ensure we leave the trail as we found it. 

Our Patagonia Trek Itinerary & Costs

Day 1: Dublin to Buenos Aires.
Fly Dublin to Buenos Aires. Overnight flight.

Day 2: Free Day Buenos Aires.
Enjoy a free day in Buenos Aires to explore the city. Overnight hotel.

Day 3: Buenos Aires to El Chaltén.
Fly Buenos Aires to El Calafate and drive to El Chaltén. Overnight hotel.

Day 4: Laguna Torre, 7 to 8 hrs trekking (18km).
Trek to Laguna Torre. Overnight hotel.

Day 5: Laguna De Los Tres, 8 to 9 hrs trekking (22km).
Trek to Laguna De Los Tres. Overnight hotel. 

Day 6: Loma del Pliegue Tumbado, 7 to 8 hrs trekking (18km).
Trek to Loma del Pliegue Tumbado. Overnight hotel. 

Day 7: El Calafate to Las Torres.
Drive for five hours to reach Las Torres. Overnight camp.

Day 8: Las Torres to Seron, 4 hrs trekking (13km).
Trek from Las Torres to Seron. Overnight camp.

Day 9: Seron to Dickson, 6 hrs trekking (18km).
Trek from Seron to Dickson. Overnight refuge.

Day 10: Dickson to Los Perros, 4 to 5 hrs trekking (11km).
Trek from Dickson to Los Perros. Overnight camp.

Day 11: Los Perros to Grey, 11 hrs trekking (22km).
Trek over the John Gardner Pass (1,200m) to reach the Grey Lake. Overnight refuge.

Day 12: Grey to Paine Grande, 3 to 4 hrs trekking (11km).
Trek from Grey to Paine Grande. Overnight refuge.

Day 13: Paine Grande to the French Valley to Los Cuernos, 8 hrs trekking (18km).
Trek from Paine Grande to Los Cuernos including the French Valley. Overnight refuge.

Day 14: Los Cuernos to Chileno, 5 to 6 hrs trekking (12km).
Trek from Los Cuernos to Chileno. Overnight refuge.

Day 15: Chileno to Torres to El Calafate, 7 hrs trekking (13km) & 5 hrs driving.
Trek to Torres and drive to El Calafate. Overnight hotel.

Day 16: Free day El Calafate.
Free day to explore. A visit to the Perito Moreno glacier is included. Overnight hotel.

Day 17: El Calafate to Buenos Aires.
Fly to Buenos Aires. Overnight hotel.

Day 18: Buenos Aires to Dublin.
Fly Buenos Aires to Dublin. Overnight flight.

Day 19: Arrive in Dublin.
Arrive back in Dublin. Expedition ends.

Patagonia - Nordernskjold Lake

Nordernskjold Lake, Patagonia.

EXPEDITION COSTS
€399 deposit at the time of booking & €1000 due six months before departure & €4,400 balance payment due two months before departure– Total €5,799.
Read our best price guarantee.

*If you would like to book this expedition excluding international flights, please contact us for a land only price.

Costs include; international flights to El Calafate, an expedition leader & doctor travelling with the group from Dublin, all transport in Argentina and Chile, meals while trekking, all accommodation based on twin sharing in hotels, refuges & camping, local support team, an Earth’s Edge softshell jacket & bandana.

*Prices were set on March 10th, 2017.

Interesting Facts about Patagonia

Patagonia is a sparsely populated geographical region located at the southern end of South America, shared by Argentina and Chile. The region comprises the southern section of the Andes Mountains; the deserts, steppes and grasslands to their east, and the archipelago of Tierra del Fuego at the southernmost tip of the continent.

The name Patagonia comes from the word patagón, used by Ferdinand Magellan and his crew while exploring the coastline of South America en route to their circumnavigation of the world in 1520. The word was used to describe the native Tehuelche people, who were thought to be giants twice the height of a normal human.

While hiking in Patagonia you could encounter a large number of native fauna such as the guanaco (similar to a llama), cougar, Patagonian fox, puma, hog-nosed skunk, Chilean flamingo, the endangered huemul deer and the almost extinct Darwin’s rhea. Birds of prey are also very common in this region, including the southern caracara, Andean condor (the largest flying bird in the world), black-chested buzzard-eagle, rufous-tailed hawk, cinereous harrier, magellanic horned owl and the austral pygmy-owl, to name but a few.

Due to its extremely southerly position the daylight hours in Patagonia vary hugely from winter to summer, so on a Patagonian trek in June you might only have 7 hours of daylight, whereas in December you could be out and about for up to 18 hours!

The climate of Patagonia is varied and changeable, being influenced by the humid South Pacific westerly air current. The northern part of the region is semiarid, with annual mean temperatures between 12 and 20 °C and rainfall amounts between 90 to 430 millimetres. The southern zone is cold and dry; mean annual temperatures range from 4 to 13 °C, heavy snows fall in winter and frosts can occur throughout the year.

Patagonia Trek

Calceolaria uniflora

El Calafate, Argentina, was named after a southern Patagonian thorny bush of the same name. It blooms in the springtime with small yellow flowers and produces bluish-black berries in the summer. According to legend, those who eat this fruit will always return to Patagonia.

The Perito Moreno Glacier, located 78 kilometres from El Calafate, was named after the explorer Francisco Moreno, a pioneer who studied the region in the 19th century. The glacier is unusual in that it is advancing, while most glaciers worldwide are retreating, an occurrence that baffles scientists. The terminus of the Perito Moreno Glacier is 5 kilometres wide, with an average height of 74 meters above the surface of the water of Argentino Lake, into which it flows.

The Patagonian trekking hub of El Chaltén is named after a native tehuelche Indian word meaning “smoking mountain”, because of the smoke-like clouds that typically envelope the surrounding peaks. One of these peaks is Mount Fitz Roy, named in honour of Robert FitzRoy, captain of the HMS Beagle, who travelled up the Santa Cruz River in 1834 and charted large parts of the Patagonian coast (bringing Charles Darwin along with him).

Los Glaciares National Park in Argentine Patagonia covers an area of 726,927 hectares, making it the largest national park in Argentina. The park's name refers to the giant ice cap in the Andes which feeds 47 large glaciers, and is the largest ice cap in the world outside of Antarctica and Greenland.

Torres del Paine National Park in southern Chilean Patagonia has been elected as the fifth most beautiful place in the world by National Geographic. It was declared a World Biosphere Reserve by Unesco in 1978 due to its beautiful and unique mix of vegetation, including the Chilean Firetree, which produces vivid red flowers, the unusual and striking Darwin’s slipper (Calceolaria uniflora) as well as seven documented species of orchid.

The Southern Patagonian Ice Field takes up the entire western side of Torres del Paine, feeding four main glaciers: Dickson, Grey, Zapata, and Tyndall. In June 2014, after the melting glaciers revealed new rock faces, scientists uncovered nearly complete fossil skeletons of dolphin-like creatures called Ichthyosaurs which lived between 245 and 90 million years ago.

The first tourist to come to Torres del Paine was British Aristocrat Lady Florence Dixie in 1879. Led by local guides, Lady Dixie explored the park and published a book in 1880 called ‘Across Patagonia’, detailing her adventures in the region, “now, as if by magic, from the bowels of the earth, a grand and glorious landscape had sprung up around us” (Lady Florence Dixie, Across Patagonia, 1880).

How To Book

Expedition Dates:

If you would like to sign up to this expedition but need some time before you can confirm your commitment, we can hold a space for you. We will hold your space for 48 hours after which time you will need to complete the booking form & pay your deposit.

Expedition Dates:

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