Challenge yourself on the 3 day Paso del Viento trekking trip to the South Patagonia Icefield and see one of the most spectacular sights in South America.
This is the 3rd-largest icecap in the world behind Antarctica and Greenland, and to see it with your own eyes is an unforgettable experience. This Paso del Viento trekking trip to the South Patagonia Icefield combines this once-in-a-lifetime experience with a hike along one of the least traversed trails in the park and stunning views of the Fitz Roy and Torre mountains for an epic adventure in only 3 days.
Highlights of Paso del Viento trekking trip to the South Patagonia Icefield:
Explore the beautiful and solitary valley of the Río Túnel and hike upon the Túnel glacier
Climb to the infamous Paso del Viento (Windy Pass) and see the immensity of the South Patagonian Icefield (the 3rd largest ice mass in the world) stretched out before you
Hike one of the least visited trails in the park
Experience the wild beauty of the high mountains of Patagonia
Level of difficulty: introductory to intermediate
Level of physical exertion: moderate to intense
Total duration: 3 days/2 nights
Day to day plan for Paso del Viento trekking trip to the South Patagonia Icefield
Day 1 - El Chaltén - Laguna Toro
Our first day of trekking sees us hiking along ~16km of undulating trails towards our first wild camp at Laguna Toro. Along the way, we will pass through forests of ñires and Lenga trees and a wide valley of glacial origin that leads us to our destination. There are spectacular views of the Fitz Roy, Torre and Solo mountains for much of the route.
Distance: 16km +600 / -400
Duration: 6/7 hours
Physical Intensity: Moderate
Included: A night of wild camping, lunch box and dinner
Day 2 - Zipline over the Río Túnel and the Paso del Viento
Our second day is much more challenging but comes with a stunning reward.
We begin by hiking around Laguna Toro to a zipline set up over the raging Río Túnel. Once we are all safely across, we begin our ascent to one of the most spectacular viewpoints in this part of Patagonia. Our route takes us between huge glacial moraines, across the Lower Túnel Glacier, and through a landscape of stones and stunted vegetation towards the infamous Paso del Viento. We will likely be walking into the wind for which the pass is named, adding to the challenge of the hike.
However, once we reach the pass at 1400m, all the difficulties will be forgotten as you take in the unparalleled view of the immense South Patagonian Icefield, the Mariano Moreno mountain range on the other side of the ice, and the enormous Viedma Glacier. Here we will spend as much time as weather allows - taking photos, enjoying the view, and (if it is not too windy) resting and having something to eat - before retracing our steps to our camp at Laguna Toro.
Distance: 16.5km +780 / -780
Duration: 9 hours
Physical Intensity: Moderate to Intense
Included: A night of wild camping, breakfast, lunch box and dinner
Day 3 - Río Túnel Valley - Pliegue del Tumbado - El Chaltén
Our last day takes us along one of the least visited trails in the park. We start out by hiking through the Río Túnel Valley and then slowly ascend in the direction of the Loma del Pliegue Tumbado. Along the way, we will enjoy beautiful views of Viedma lake, and every break in the forest will reward us with glimpses of Cerro Fitz Roy and Cerro Torre.
Once we arrive at the viewpoint, we will have an uninterrupted vista of the Fitz Roy river valley, Cerro Fitz Roy, and Cerro Torre with Glacier Grande spilling down to its base. We will linger here for as long as the weather allows before beginning our final descent towards El Chaltén and a well-deserved shower.
Distance: 16km +400 / -600
Duration: 6 hours
Physical Intensity: Moderate
Included: Breakfast and lunch box