What to do in Patagonia, A unique traverse in Torres del Paine
Everybody has a goal or just wants to do something without an apparet reason. The last few days of our trip in the Patagonia, we met a Chilean friend, Mauro, who -as he told us- for a few months had the goal to hike from the Bader valley (in the base of “Los Cuernos, La Máscara, La Hoja y La Espada”) towards the Torre Valley (in the base of South, Central and North towers) in Torres del Paine, Chile.
As the good friends that we are, we joined our friend to accomplish his goal. For us it sounded like a very interesting trek, far away from the crowd that you may find in the famous “W” hike in Torres del Paine. We left Puerto Natales in a bus that goes directly to the Park entrance ($25 foreign fee), took a transfer towards one of the nice lodges in the area. And here is where the adventure started. The first day, the hike was nice and short (2 hours). At night it rained a lot!, the next morning we were about to quit. But an hour later, the sky openened, and we enjoyed a delicious breakfast under the nice and warm sunlight. We decided to continue the hike, it was his lifertime dream, it wasn’t fair to quit!
We had time to get our stuff dry and started a long hike. We had to walk barefoot to cross streams that had become actual rivers that day because of the rain. The water was cold, very cold. 9 hours later we arrived to the heart of Bader valley, an amazing place. We were surrounded by huge granite walls and had to camp under very patagonian conditions (cold and wind). The next was a hard day (again). We spent almost 10 hours walking in a morraine with huge rocks, rapelling 200 m (with rocks falling) and walking in a glacier, towards the lagoon in the base of the towers, that was a great place to spend our third and last night in the Park. The next day, we hiked 3 more hours, and back to Pueto Natales to enjoy a delicious “Lomo a lo pobre” that was one of our biggest motivations up there..
I am very happy that we did this hike, we could enjoy a unique part of Torres del Paine. I bet that the “W” hike is as great a what we did, but having the chance to enjoy the towers with a feeling of solitude is irrepleaceable. Up there, I felt that we were alone in the world. and that is a wonderful feeling. Is a great experience for those searching a little more adventure when visiting the Torres del Paine, althought it has to be done with the companion of an experienced mountaineer.
Here a short slideshow of this trip..
If you like comfort:
By car, you can get to any of the few nice and warm lodges, with great views and great food as well. In this places, you can enjoy activities like horseback riding, one day hikes or just enjoy the views sipping a cup of hot chocolate. Click here to see some of the lodging options in the area