THE TORRES DEL PAINE National Park is one of the most spectacular national parks in Chile.”Its beautiful setting amongst snow-capped mountain peaks, cascading rivers and waterfalls, glaciers and mirrored lakes has made it an attractive destination for hikers and backpackers, ecology-lovers and adventure sportsmen and women. There are clearly marked paths and many refugios which provide food, shelter and basic services. The views in the park are outstanding. Walkers can choose between a day trip to see the Paine Towers, walk the popular “W” route in about five days, or trek the full Paine Circuit in 8–9 days.
AFICIONADOS AGREE that the unique physical formations of the Paine (pronounced pie-nay) complex with its glacier lakes, profusion of animals and well-defined paths offers some of the best wilderness walking in the world. The uncommon sensation of being in one of the world’s most remote and untouched areas is an experience to be savoured. Although it can be cold and wet, memories of this Great Walk will last long after your clothes have dried out.
ACCOMMODATION: Camping is only allowed at specified campsites and wood fires are prohibited throughout the park. Many walkers choose a self-guided package which includes transfers to and from Puerto Natales and catered accommodation at refuges in the park. Our companion ebook will take you on a day by day guide through the walking journey from the moment you arrive in Punta Arenas, the capital city of Chile’s southernmost region.
WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO GO? The best season to visit the park, is from October to April. The name “Paine” comes from a Tehuelche Indian word meaning “blue”. The Paine Massif is almost completely encircled by the Rio Paine. High-quality foul-weather gear is essential; a warm synthetic sleeping bag and wind-resistant tent are imperative for those undertaking the Paine Circuit and recommended for those doing the extremely popular ‘W.’
A PERSONAL ACCOUNT: “From here we saw the extent of this huge valley. There were even better views up the valley towards Refugio Chileno. It looked like Switzerland. Fantastic. The track followed the sides of the steeply gravelled valley foothills winding around ridges and gullies. Not that the walking was dangerous, but we did have to watch our footsteps as there was some loose scree which had slid down on to the path at various sections”.
We’ve detailed our experiences of life on the W Walk to help you plan your journey. There are plenty of photos and maps as well. Of course, there’s nothing like doing it yourself. WALK Torres Del Paine includes:
- Walker’s Information.
- Day by Day itinerary.
- Fully Illustrated – 65 Images.
- Overview Maps – 7 maps.
- Sites to Visit.
- 85 Pages.
- Informative Narrative.
- Chilean Culture.
- Clothes to Wear.
- Gear to Take.
- PDF ebook.
WALK Torres Del Paine