Sophie is a local guide for treks in Patagonia. Here are the interview about the trek with her.
Sophie can you give us the major stages of this journey and the different landscapes and environments that we through?
It is a journey that brings together all the most beautiful treks in Patagonia . Two parks, both unique , one of Los Glaciares in Argentina and the Torres del Paine in Chile we visit . Argentine side you will discover the village of El Chalten and trails approaching the beautiful walls of Fitz Roy and Cerro Torre, and the top of plegue Tumbado , less frequented trek offers superb views . Side scenery , you will also see the impressive Perito Moreno and front blue glacier ice . It also travels hundreds of miles of Pampa , a desert where only run wind noise and sheep.
The “must” of the trip is the Torres del Paine park, with a nice big trek in a famous park , impressive granite walls which gives the feeling of leaving a film set as they seem unreal : glaciers, blue lake , green, turquoise, short a beautiful playground for hiking .
A highlight of this trip is the trek in the Wrong side of Paine (or Vuelta del Paine ) . What this place is exceptional and why it go Wrong side of Paine rather than the classic Paine ?
La Vuelta del Paine , or the grand tour , allows for the complete tour of the Paine Massif . It not only takes 3 beautiful glacial valleys of the “W” ( Torres Valley , French Valley and Grey Glacier Valley ), but also discovers the rear part of the massif . The scenery is much wilder , we discover glaciers, vast forests of lenga ( the southern beech) and mountain rivers . The atmosphere in this part of the park is pretty special especially because of the isolation. Fairly popular trails “W” is allowed to visit the most secret valleys . We are virtually alone as Terdav is the only French agency to offer this beautiful trek.
You made this trip at least 5 times , what is your fondest memory ?
A great time is always that of the pass Garner . After a long climb to reach the hill where is unfolding before our eyes the huge ice tongue of the Grey Glacier , about thirty kilometers . The place is 1200m , usually quite windy ( we had a few passages which stand became a challenge! ) . The mountain atmosphere , even if it is at a relatively low altitude, is guaranteed. The descent into the forest, the views are stunning , the blue ice appears at times to visit the forest. Then we witness a spectacular landscape between overhanging cliffs and ice beneath our feet. Superb !
It is a journey 4 shoes we offer, what this level requires in terms of fitness, porting , trekking etc. ..
Around the Paine account 120km . In the course, there is a day 10am but this is the most beautiful and obviously … it is worth ! The start is very early , the climb to be done in about 3 hours , with very muddy passages , and sometimes snow ( in November). The pass is done with a few flurries, the descent is very steep in the forest and ends along the glacier to the lake . It is true that you get very tired at the campsite Grey …. but happy. This trip also requires endurance because it connects all days but the program alternates full days and other lighter with a shorter walk .
This leaves us a little time to remove shoes and indulge in idleness. Please note that we carry our belongings , sleeping bag and all that we have found useful or necessary on our backs ( but in this situation is always possible to reduce the need ! ) Patagonia is also known for its four seasons in one day , we can have rain , lots of wind and just after a lot of sun!