The W Trek is Patagonia’s most famous hiking route, with the granite towers that give the park its name the standout feature. In full, it’s a four or five day hike that can be walked without carrying gear or food, between refugios (basic dorm-roomed huts) or campsites. It can also be broken up into day hikes from comfortable hotel bases, incorporated into longer, wilder treks or walked in winter, when the going is tougher but the park is quieter and possibly even more spectacular.
In the morning go to the office of Fantastico Sur to get all the info and maps about the Trek. At 14.15 be at the BUS Station to take Regular Bus to Paine Nat Park which departs at 14.30 and takes aprox 2,30hrs (112 Km), with a short stop at Cerro Castillo Village. Arrive to Laguna Amarga entrance where you will have to pay the Nat Park fees and take the shuttle that will be waiting for you to take you to Las Torres sector where our Refugio is located. Accommodation: Refugio Torre Central.
Trek to Base of the Towers (7/8 hrs – 13 Km)
Recommended to start: 9.00 AM
After a good breakfast on the Refugio, you will get your pack lunch and start a day trek to the base of the Towers, once you arrive to Refugio El Chileno (about 2 hours from Refugio Torre Central). You’ll continue through the valley until reach a huge moraine, ascending to a viewpoint, excellent for a panoramic view. At this point three giant granite towers and a lagoon will surround you with slurry waters due to erosion produced by glaciers. We shall enjoy the scenery for a while before descending on the same trail heading back to El Chileno Refugio. Accommodation: Refugio El Chileno.
Trek to Los Cuernos (4/5 hrs – 11 Km)
Recommended to start: 9.00 AM.
About 30 minutes after leaving Refugio El Chileno you will notice the sign to take the “shortcut” that leads to Refugio Los Cuernos. The trail goes through the Base of Almirante Nieto Mn. – part of the Paine Massif-, with great views to Nordenskjöld lake; from December the flora presents different colours specially the “Ciruelillo or Fire Bush” which take its name from the red colour of its flowers. After about 4/5 hours you will get to the Base of Los Cuernos where the Refugio is located, considered by many, one of the most charming sites in the whole park, a perfect spot to rest and recover energies for the next day challenging trek: “The French Valley”. Accommodation: Refugio Los Cuernos.
Trek to French Valley (10/12 hrs – 25.3 Km)
Recommended to start: 8.00 AM
Early morning after an abundant breakfast at the Refugio and ready for this long day we start our walk to the Frances valley, a fantastic valley surrounded by the Horns, Mascara and Espada Mounts. We reach the Campamento Italiano – here you may contact CONAF (the administration staff at the National Park), continue to the Valley from where a bit further into the mountains we shall get a fantastic view of the Frances Glacier. Further up the valley, we reach the Campamento Británico and finally after an uphill of about an hour we reach one of the best spots in the National Park surrounded by the highest mounts in the area, certainly worth to reach. Back through the same trail we get to Campamento Italiano, and head west to Paine Grande. Accommodation: Refugio Paine Grande.
Trek to Grey Glacier (8/9 hrs – 22 Km)
Recommended to start: 9.00 AM.
Trek to Grey Glacier lookout (roundtrip). The trail goes through the western side of the Paine Massif with views to Grey Lake and Mountains. After 1,30hr you will reach the first lookout point, where you may observe Grey Glacier in the distance, then and after 2hrs you will get to the Main lookout, in front of the glacier. The return is the same way back until Pehoé Lake to take the Catamaran that departs at 18.30hr and crosses Pehoe Lake to Pudeto sector, where your bus will be waiting for you to take you back to Puerto Natales arriving at 22.00hr.
- 4 nights accommodation
- Meals as per itinerary
- Catamaran Tickets
- 24 hour local guide assistance