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Patagonia: Trekking the Paine Circuit

Trip Length 11 days

From $5,295

  • Make a complete circuit of the Paine Massif, including the famous "W" route—one of the great treks of the world!
  • Trek with the experts in Patagonia adventure, who first pioneered this route in the 1980s, and go where other hikers seldom venture
  • Hike along the enormous Grey Glacier, more than five miles across and 17 miles in length, and see icebergs calving into Lago Grey—a truly spectacular experience

With its near-vertical spires soaring high above the plains, Chile’s Torres del Paine massif is a scenic marvel, a place where every serious mountain lover must go. On the famous “W” route, you’ll hike deep into the remote wilderness of southern Chile. Here, glaciers of millennia past have receded from the granite rock of the Cordillera Paine, leaving a cluster of craggy peaks rising 8,000 feet above the surrounding grasslands. The jaw-dropping vistas of monolithic rock spires and snow-capped mountains, the huge expanse of the Southern Patagonia Ice Field, the tranquil azure lakes, and the golden plains bright with wildflowers make this, beyond a doubt, one of the most unforgettable treks you’ll ever take! Few companies operate the full circuit, but we’ve been doing it since we pioneered the route in the 1980s, and although it’s a challenging trek, you’ll have full support throughout—including porters to carry your gear. Join the Patagonia experts for a truly exhilarating wilderness adventure.

Day 1: Arrive in Punta Arenas

Upon your morning arrival in Punta Arenas, Chile, your trip leader will meet you at the airport and transfer you to the hotel. In the evening, the group will gather for a pre-trip briefing.

  • Dinner
  • Accommodation:Hotel Cabo de Hornos

Day 2: Take a scenic drive to Torres del Paine National Park

This morning, after breakfast we'll continue to Torres del Paine National Park, where we'll take in the first spectacular views of the Paine Massif (weather permitting). There is also a very good chance of seeing guanacos—small cousins to the camel and llama—when arriving at the park. Because the sun sets late in Patagonia's summer, there's plenty of time to admire and photograph the amazing landscape.

You will be awed by incredible views of the surrounding vistas, including the granite pillars of the Torres del Paine. 

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Hotel Las Torres

Day 3: Explore majestic Torres del Paine

We'll get an early start for our all-day hike to the Torres del Paine lookout, first following the Ascensio River over a low pass into the Ascencio Valley. We'll pass through beech forests, talus-covered slopes, and boulders before arriving at a spectacular viewpoint, where the towers rise majestically before us and the glacial lake is visible below. This is one of the most scenic spots in the world! We'll enjoy a packed lunch en route before hiking back to our hotel.

Tonight you'll be given a waterproof bag (approx. 900 cubic inches) . In this baag you must pack clothing and other essential items you’ll need for the next five days. This bag will be carried by porters and you'll carry your daypack—with your camera, rxtra layers and raingear, personal papers, medication, lunch, etc. Meanwhile your duffel, containing the rest of your belongings, will be stored and will meet up with you again at Lago Pehoe on Day 8. Be sure to pack light.

(Hiking time: approx. 9 hours, 11.6 miles; Start: 400ft / End 400ft. Elevation gain: 2,500ft. Total ascent: 3,900ft)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Hotel Las Torres

Day 4: Hike to Campamento Seron

Today we have a leisurely day hiking to our next camp. We will enjoy the impressive views of the Towers of Paine and the peaks of Almirante Nieto hovering above the terraces and delta of the Asencio River. Then we pass through a tall deciduous beech forest, where we may spot the Magellanic Woodpecker before our path will lead us through the foothills of Cerro Paine and grassland areas before arriving at the old outpost named after the gaucho Serón. This is the first night of 6 in MTS Camp sleeping in tent.  Campamento Serón

(Hiking time: approx. 5 hours, 8 miles; Start: 400ft/ End 500 ft. Elevation gain: 250ft)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Day 5: Enjoy incredible views en route to Lago Dickson

This is a long day, and though our hike has some ups and downs, it is mostly flat. We´ll continue hiking west over the Patagonian plains, skirting the Paine River and Lago Paine. Along the way we´ll have incredible views of the northeast peaks of the Paine massif, including Cabeza del Indio (The Indian head) and Escudo, as well as the glaciers Dickson and Cubo (weather permitting). Finally the Dickson Lake appears and we can take in the panoramic view before descending towards our camp.  Campamento Dixon

(Hiking time: approx. 6-8 hours, 11 miles; Start: 500ft/ End 650 ft. Elevation gain: 670ft)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Day 6: Hike west towards the remote Los Perros Glacier

Today we´ll hike west through primeval beech forest, appreciating great views of the Dickson Glacier pouring into the Dickson lake from the Ice Field above. We´ll follow the roaring Los Perros River that leads us to the Los Perros Hanging Glacier and Lake beautifully set in an impressive moraine landscape. Our campsite is located in a peaceful old-growth forest near here. As a sign of our remoteness, no hot showers are available here.
Campamento Los Perros.

(Hiking time: Approx 4-5 hours. 6 miles. Start: 650ft/ End 1950 ft. Elevation gain: 1300 ft.)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Day 7: Cross the John Gardner Mountain Pass

We´ll start our hike early, ascending steadily towards the John Garner Mountain Pass (4,000 ft.). Once on top, we´ll have fantastic and mind blowing views of the Southern Patagonian Ice Field and the 17-mile long Grey glacier resting 2,600 feet below (weather permitting). We´ll descend scree slopes to the tree line and enter the forest along the Grey Glacier. The first downhill part is strenuous, steep and muddy but after a while it levels out and we can enjoy the silent forest while walking along the cracking glacier. A few high hanging bridges must be crossed before arriving at our camp. 
Campamento Grey.

(Hiking time: Approx 10-12 hours. 14 miles. Start: 1950ft/ End 250ft. Elevation gain: 2050 ft.)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Day 8: See spectacular Grey Glacier and camp at Lago Pehoe

Today we´ll visit the front of the Grey Glacier, a 10-minute walk from the refugio. There we´ll have the opportunity to observe blue icebergs in the Grey water or even a calving into the Grey Lake – a truly spectacular experience! We´ll then take a leisurely hike to our next camp at Lago Pehoé, while having fantastic views of the glacier behind us, the Ice Field to the west and the Paine Massif rearing up above us to the east. Upon arrival we'll be reunited with our duffel bags.

(Hiking time: Approx 4 hours. 7,5 miles. Start: 250ft/ End 200ft. Elevation gain: 1000 ft.)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Day 9: Hike through beautiful Frenchman's Valley

Today we´ll hike a roundtrip into the Frenchman’s valley, one of the most spectacular cirques in the Paine Massif. We´ll walk below the glaciers that descend from the massifs highest summit, Paine Grande, and marvel at the gray granite peaks of the Cuernos de Paine (The Horns), which are topped with fantastic black “horns” of slate. Two different hiking options are available today:  The strenuous option to the Granite Peak Amphitheater of the interior valley or the more leisurely option to the Lookout of the Frenchman’s Glacier and Paine Grande. 

(Hiking time – option 1: Approx 10-12 hours. 16,5 miles. Start: 200ft/ End 200ft. Elevation gain: 2000 ft.)

(Hiking time – option 2: Approx 8 hours. 11 miles. Start: 200ft/ End 200ft. Elevation gain: 1200 ft.)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Day 10: Drive to Puerto Natales

From our camp we take a catamaran across the Pehoé Lake, enjoying amazing final views of the Cuernos and Paine Grande. We´ll meet with our vehicle and drive to Puerto Natales where we can enjoy some free time and a farewell celebration dinner.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Hotel CostAustralis

Day 11: Depart

After breakfast, we'll be transfered to the airport for your flight to Santiago and connect with your international flight.

If you can't bring yourself to depart South America just yet (and we certainly couldn't blame you!), consider joining one of our extensions, including Easter Island and the Atacama Desert, among others. Ask our Regional Specialist for details!

  • Breakfast

Feb 20, 2017 - Mar 02, 2017

pricing

2017 PRICES

$5,295 (4-12 members)
$800 single supplement

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Hotel Cabo de Hornos — Punta Arenas

Recently renovated modern European style, this large hotel offers spacious rooms, some with sea views, and is the perfect stop off before heading out on your adventure (or before returning home). Modern amenities such as complimentary Wi-Fi, cable TV and room service are provided. There is a restaurant on-site, but the flavors of Punta Arenas await just outside your door. For the culturally curious, museums and other attractions are nearby. Or you could just indulge in a nap; the beds are exceedingly comfortable.

Hotel CostAustralis

The atmosphere of the Hotel CostAustralis' rooms has been created to put  guests even more at ease than they would be at home. The staff work daily to surpass our guest's expectations and provide pleasant and memorable experiences.

To achieve this, the hotel's 110 rooms have been designed to provide complete comfort and rest. They are decorated in a sober but elegant fashion, employing the region's most beautiful woods. Every room has a full private bath, strongbox, cable TV, domestic and international direct dialling, thermo-acoustic windows, independent heating and wireless internet access.

Hotel CostAustralis prides itself on providing everything that you need for a restful night so that you will wake up each day with energy to continue enjoying your marvelous Patagonian adventure to its fullest.

Hotel Las Torres — Torres del Paine National Park

Surrounded by towering mountains, this hotel sits in a grassy field at a considerable distance from nearby towns. Simple, comfortable rooms come equipped with all the essentials and have windows showcasing the awe-inspiring surroundings. While the hotel does have a small shop that provides some trekking equipment, snacks and toiletries, it's best to come prepared as this property is in a remote location. The on-site restaurant serves food that is authentic to the Patagonia region, featuring organic produce and beer from their microbrewery.

  • Make a complete circuit of the Paine Massif, including the famous "W" route—one of the great treks of the world!
  • Trek with the experts in Patagonia adventure, who first pioneered this route in the 1980s, and go where other hikers seldom venture
  • Hike along the enormous Grey Glacier, more than five miles across and 17 miles in length, and see icebergs calving into Lago Grey—a truly spectacular experience

With its near-vertical spires soaring high above the plains, Chile’s Torres del Paine massif is a scenic marvel, a place where every serious mountain lover must go. On the famous “W” route, you’ll hike deep into the remote wilderness of southern Chile. Here, glaciers of millennia past have receded from the granite rock of the Cordillera Paine, leaving a cluster of craggy peaks rising 8,000 feet above the surrounding grasslands. The jaw-dropping vistas of monolithic rock spires and snow-capped mountains, the huge expanse of the Southern Patagonia Ice Field, the tranquil azure lakes, and the golden plains bright with wildflowers make this, beyond a doubt, one of the most unforgettable treks you’ll ever take! Few companies operate the full circuit, but we’ve been doing it since we pioneered the route in the 1980s, and although it’s a challenging trek, you’ll have full support throughout—including porters to carry your gear. Join the Patagonia experts for a truly exhilarating wilderness adventure.

DAILY itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Punta Arenas

Upon your morning arrival in Punta Arenas, Chile, your trip leader will meet you at the airport and transfer you to the hotel. In the evening, the group will gather for a pre-trip briefing.

  • Dinner
  • Accommodation:Hotel Cabo de Hornos

Day 2: Take a scenic drive to Torres del Paine National Park

This morning, after breakfast we'll continue to Torres del Paine National Park, where we'll take in the first spectacular views of the Paine Massif (weather permitting). There is also a very good chance of seeing guanacos—small cousins to the camel and llama—when arriving at the park. Because the sun sets late in Patagonia's summer, there's plenty of time to admire and photograph the amazing landscape.

You will be awed by incredible views of the surrounding vistas, including the granite pillars of the Torres del Paine. 

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Hotel Las Torres

Day 3: Explore majestic Torres del Paine

We'll get an early start for our all-day hike to the Torres del Paine lookout, first following the Ascensio River over a low pass into the Ascencio Valley. We'll pass through beech forests, talus-covered slopes, and boulders before arriving at a spectacular viewpoint, where the towers rise majestically before us and the glacial lake is visible below. This is one of the most scenic spots in the world! We'll enjoy a packed lunch en route before hiking back to our hotel.

Tonight you'll be given a waterproof bag (approx. 900 cubic inches) . In this baag you must pack clothing and other essential items you’ll need for the next five days. This bag will be carried by porters and you'll carry your daypack—with your camera, rxtra layers and raingear, personal papers, medication, lunch, etc. Meanwhile your duffel, containing the rest of your belongings, will be stored and will meet up with you again at Lago Pehoe on Day 8. Be sure to pack light.

(Hiking time: approx. 9 hours, 11.6 miles; Start: 400ft / End 400ft. Elevation gain: 2,500ft. Total ascent: 3,900ft)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Hotel Las Torres

Day 4: Hike to Campamento Seron

Today we have a leisurely day hiking to our next camp. We will enjoy the impressive views of the Towers of Paine and the peaks of Almirante Nieto hovering above the terraces and delta of the Asencio River. Then we pass through a tall deciduous beech forest, where we may spot the Magellanic Woodpecker before our path will lead us through the foothills of Cerro Paine and grassland areas before arriving at the old outpost named after the gaucho Serón. This is the first night of 6 in MTS Camp sleeping in tent.  Campamento Serón

(Hiking time: approx. 5 hours, 8 miles; Start: 400ft/ End 500 ft. Elevation gain: 250ft)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Day 5: Enjoy incredible views en route to Lago Dickson

This is a long day, and though our hike has some ups and downs, it is mostly flat. We´ll continue hiking west over the Patagonian plains, skirting the Paine River and Lago Paine. Along the way we´ll have incredible views of the northeast peaks of the Paine massif, including Cabeza del Indio (The Indian head) and Escudo, as well as the glaciers Dickson and Cubo (weather permitting). Finally the Dickson Lake appears and we can take in the panoramic view before descending towards our camp.  Campamento Dixon

(Hiking time: approx. 6-8 hours, 11 miles; Start: 500ft/ End 650 ft. Elevation gain: 670ft)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Day 6: Hike west towards the remote Los Perros Glacier

Today we´ll hike west through primeval beech forest, appreciating great views of the Dickson Glacier pouring into the Dickson lake from the Ice Field above. We´ll follow the roaring Los Perros River that leads us to the Los Perros Hanging Glacier and Lake beautifully set in an impressive moraine landscape. Our campsite is located in a peaceful old-growth forest near here. As a sign of our remoteness, no hot showers are available here.
Campamento Los Perros.

(Hiking time: Approx 4-5 hours. 6 miles. Start: 650ft/ End 1950 ft. Elevation gain: 1300 ft.)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Day 7: Cross the John Gardner Mountain Pass

We´ll start our hike early, ascending steadily towards the John Garner Mountain Pass (4,000 ft.). Once on top, we´ll have fantastic and mind blowing views of the Southern Patagonian Ice Field and the 17-mile long Grey glacier resting 2,600 feet below (weather permitting). We´ll descend scree slopes to the tree line and enter the forest along the Grey Glacier. The first downhill part is strenuous, steep and muddy but after a while it levels out and we can enjoy the silent forest while walking along the cracking glacier. A few high hanging bridges must be crossed before arriving at our camp. 
Campamento Grey.

(Hiking time: Approx 10-12 hours. 14 miles. Start: 1950ft/ End 250ft. Elevation gain: 2050 ft.)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Day 8: See spectacular Grey Glacier and camp at Lago Pehoe

Today we´ll visit the front of the Grey Glacier, a 10-minute walk from the refugio. There we´ll have the opportunity to observe blue icebergs in the Grey water or even a calving into the Grey Lake – a truly spectacular experience! We´ll then take a leisurely hike to our next camp at Lago Pehoé, while having fantastic views of the glacier behind us, the Ice Field to the west and the Paine Massif rearing up above us to the east. Upon arrival we'll be reunited with our duffel bags.

(Hiking time: Approx 4 hours. 7,5 miles. Start: 250ft/ End 200ft. Elevation gain: 1000 ft.)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Day 9: Hike through beautiful Frenchman's Valley

Today we´ll hike a roundtrip into the Frenchman’s valley, one of the most spectacular cirques in the Paine Massif. We´ll walk below the glaciers that descend from the massifs highest summit, Paine Grande, and marvel at the gray granite peaks of the Cuernos de Paine (The Horns), which are topped with fantastic black “horns” of slate. Two different hiking options are available today:  The strenuous option to the Granite Peak Amphitheater of the interior valley or the more leisurely option to the Lookout of the Frenchman’s Glacier and Paine Grande. 

(Hiking time – option 1: Approx 10-12 hours. 16,5 miles. Start: 200ft/ End 200ft. Elevation gain: 2000 ft.)

(Hiking time – option 2: Approx 8 hours. 11 miles. Start: 200ft/ End 200ft. Elevation gain: 1200 ft.)

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Day 10: Drive to Puerto Natales

From our camp we take a catamaran across the Pehoé Lake, enjoying amazing final views of the Cuernos and Paine Grande. We´ll meet with our vehicle and drive to Puerto Natales where we can enjoy some free time and a farewell celebration dinner.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Hotel CostAustralis

Day 11: Depart

After breakfast, we'll be transfered to the airport for your flight to Santiago and connect with your international flight.

If you can't bring yourself to depart South America just yet (and we certainly couldn't blame you!), consider joining one of our extensions, including Easter Island and the Atacama Desert, among others. Ask our Regional Specialist for details!

  • Breakfast
lodgings

Hotel Cabo de Hornos — Punta Arenas

Recently renovated modern European style, this large hotel offers spacious rooms, some with sea views, and is the perfect stop off before heading out on your adventure (or before returning home). Modern amenities such as complimentary Wi-Fi, cable TV and room service are provided. There is a restaurant on-site, but the flavors of Punta Arenas await just outside your door. For the culturally curious, museums and other attractions are nearby. Or you could just indulge in a nap; the beds are exceedingly comfortable.

Hotel CostAustralis

The atmosphere of the Hotel CostAustralis' rooms has been created to put  guests even more at ease than they would be at home. The staff work daily to surpass our guest's expectations and provide pleasant and memorable experiences.

To achieve this, the hotel's 110 rooms have been designed to provide complete comfort and rest. They are decorated in a sober but elegant fashion, employing the region's most beautiful woods. Every room has a full private bath, strongbox, cable TV, domestic and international direct dialling, thermo-acoustic windows, independent heating and wireless internet access.

Hotel CostAustralis prides itself on providing everything that you need for a restful night so that you will wake up each day with energy to continue enjoying your marvelous Patagonian adventure to its fullest.

Hotel Las Torres — Torres del Paine National Park

Surrounded by towering mountains, this hotel sits in a grassy field at a considerable distance from nearby towns. Simple, comfortable rooms come equipped with all the essentials and have windows showcasing the awe-inspiring surroundings. While the hotel does have a small shop that provides some trekking equipment, snacks and toiletries, it's best to come prepared as this property is in a remote location. The on-site restaurant serves food that is authentic to the Patagonia region, featuring organic produce and beer from their microbrewery.

Dates and Pricing

Feb 20, 2017 - Mar 02, 2017

pricing

2017 PRICES

$5,295 (4-12 members)
$800 single supplement

Activity Level Strenuous
Trip Length 11 days

From $5,295

Interested in this adventure? Take the next step and book it!

Got questions?

Call us at 1-888-831-7526
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