Patagonian Ice Cap Trek

General Description

This intense and unforgettable expedition to the Southern Patagonian Continental Ice Field will allow you to admire the contrast between desolated yellow steppe, deep green Nothofagus forest and the white horizon of the Ice continental cap. The route below is a full circuit around Fitz Roy and Cerro Torre massif which offers impressive views of the North and West sides of these spires. Walking and camping on the ice will reward us with a close look of the majestic Cirque of the Altars, the paradise on Earth for alpine climbers.

Trip Info

This expedition requires no prior technical experience with crampons or ropes. Nevertheless, good predisposition to physical effort is needed in order to fully enjoy this adventure. Trekkers will have to carry their personal gear or hire porters and walk on different types of terrain, ice, steep slopes, moraines and flat ground as well.

Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival to El Calafate airport and transfer to El Chaltén

You will be flying over the immense Patagonian Steppe, you will see lakes and the impressive Andes. A transfer will be waiting for you to take you to El Chaltén, a small village 300 people in winter. The way to get there is a 200km road through wide Estancias between Lake Argentino and Lake Viedma. Check in to Hotel. The guides will check your gear and you will have time to prepare your backpacks for the next day.

Day 2: Transfer from El Chaltén to Rio Electrco Bridge and trek to Eléctrico Lake

This is an easy trekking day through the forest viewing huge cliffs and crossing streams to get to a small beach (Rio Eléctrico Lake) where we will camp and spend the night. Approx. 6 or 7 hrs. walking.

Day 3: Eléctrico Lake to Marconi Pass

As we will be getting on top of the Marconi Glacier it is essential to have good weather. This might be the hardest day and we will use ropes and climbing techniques. Expect magnificent views of the expanse Continental Ice-cap. There is plenty space to camp on the ice! Approx. 6 to 8 hrs.

Day 4: Trek to Circo de los Altares

There are incredible views in this section that can’t be missed, the Cirque is formed by several of the most famous peaks in the climbing world, such as Cerro Torre, Fitz Roy and Egger. Approx. 5 to 6 hrs.

If we have good weather, the next day we can make a round trek to the base of Cerro Torre, without backpacks, approx. 5 to 6 hrs in total. In this case, we will be using one of the extra days.

Day 5: Trek to Laguna de los Esquies

We still walk on top of the ice cap, enjoying the nice view and gradually descending to find a blue lagoon where we will set up the camp. Approx. 5 hrs.

Day 6: Trek to laguna Toro

While crossing Paso del viento (Wind Pass) walking on top of moraines we will be leaving the Ice-cap and entering the Tunel valley. Approx. 6 hrs.

Day 7: Trek back to El Chaltén

The trek goes through a green valley. We will have horses to carry part of our equipment and we will have a nice cozy supper at the Hotel. Approx. 6 to 7 hrs

Day 8 and 9: Extra days in case of bad weather.

Falta descripcion

Day 10: Transfer from El Chaltén to El Calafate

Falta descripcion

Day 11: Flight back home

Falta descripcion

Our Services

Mountain guides

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Communication

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Meals

Transportation

Accommodation

Porters

Mules/ horses for gear transport

Tents and camping equipment

Medical equipment

Other services

Services not included