Patagonia & Antarctica 2011

El Chalten, Argentina


El Chalten is a small town with everything in easy walking distance, including the trailheads.  We stayed at the Rancho Grande Hostel, which is a nice place that also serves food (as well as having a small kitchen for self-prepared meals).  On Sunday, Steve hiked the trail to Laguna de los Tres, which is shown in red in the map.  This is a 25 km (15 mile) round trip hike with about 750 m (2500 feet) of elevation gain.  The last section is steep and rocky, but the view at the top was worth it, despite Mt. Fitz Roy being partially obscured by clouds!

On Monday, we hiked to the "Mirador de los Condores" viewpoint near the visitor center at the south side of town.  We had a clear view of Mt. Fitz Roy from here and a view overlooking the town of El Chalten.  We puttered around town the rest of the day until our bus back to El Calafate left at around 6 pm.

hiking map


Sunday:  Laguna de los Tres hike 


Mt. Fitz Roy in the clouds, Laguna Capri, hanging glacier


Fitz Roy views, old cabin at Rio Blanco climber's campground



rocky terrain on last section, view back of Laguna Madre and Laguna Hija, Fitz Roy with Laguna de los Tres



Steve at Luguna De los Tres, Fitz Roy nearly fully visible, view back of Laguna Madre and Laguna Hija



Sign warning of dangerous ascent, Rio de los Vueltas upstream from El Chalten

Sign above says:

Sr Visitante
Los ultimos 500 metros de este sendero tienen mayor dificultad y exposición al vacio.  No suba si no posee calzado alto (bota de trekking) y experiencia en senderos de montaña.  Evite accidentes.

Google English translation:

Mr Guest
The last 500 meters of this trail are more difficult and vacuum exposure. Do not climb if you have no high footwear (hiking boots) and experience on mountain trails. Avoid accidents.



Monday:  Mirador de los Condores hike 


Mt. Fitz Roy


Cerro Solo, El Chalten from the viewpoint



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