Cerro Castillo 5 Day Trek
As an alternative to the now crowded Torres del Paine, start from one of the world’s most isolated highways, the Carretera Austral, deep into the paradise that is the Aysen region in Northern Patagonia. This 5-day hike over mountains and through dense forest in the Cerro Castillo National Park is perfect for adventurous trekkers looking to experience a side of Chile that few have seen before. Get there before everyone else does!
DAY 1 (FRIDAY): ARRIVAL TO AYSEN REGION AND TRANSFER TO VILLA CERRO CASTILLO
Following your 2 ½ hour flight from Santiago to Balmaceda Airport, we will pick you up from the airport and make the 1 ½ hour scenic drive to the town of Cerro Castillo in Northern Patagonia. We’ll take you to your bed and breakfast to get settled in, and then head into town for dinner and to go over tomorrow’s trek with your guides.
DAY 2 (SATURDAY): ADVENTURE STARTS, CERRO CASTILLO TREK BEGINS
We begin the first day by hiking approximately 15 kilometers along the trail known as “Las Horquetas.” You will follow an old logging road for about two hours, which gently winds through the mountain valley passing the camps of local gauchos who used to take their livestock into the mountains in the summer months. You’ll make your first stream crossing here and get a glimpse of the crystal clear waters of Patagonia. At the Reserve entrance, you’ll register your details with the Park wardens and then continue hiking 2 km, until you reach Camp Turbio and set up camp ready to spend your first night. 15km (9.3 miles) of hiking - about 7 hours
DAY 3 (SUNDAY): FIRST CHALLENGE, PORTEZUELO EL PEÑON
Your second day of trekking begins by following the Turbio River through the valley until the ascent into the mountains. You’ll then cross Pinon Pass, which has an altitude of 1,300 meters, and which has a challenging descent along loose, steep rock scree and even a small amount of snow (except February and March). After making your way past the hanging Pinon Glacier and over the pass, we will arrive at the campsite, La Tetera Camp, where our guides will help us settle in and where we will rest until the next day. 12km (7.4 miles) of hiking - about 8 hours
DAY 4 (MONDAY): FROM LAGUNA CERRO CASTILLO TO EL NEOZELANDES CAMP
After an early start, we continue to the famous lagoon of Cerro Castillo. You’ll take a short break here to take in the scenery and marvel down at the valley you have spent the last two days hiking through, before gathering yourself up to continue on. We climb up Morro Negro, reaching 1,700 meters, and then descend down the steep rock scree to Camp Porteadores. From here we continue to the upper camp, Camp Neozelandes, where you can check out views of the North face of Cerro Castillo and the glacial basin making up Castillo and Cerro Palo. 10km (6.2 miles) of hiking - about 8 hours
DAY 5 (TUESDAY): LAST REWARD LAGUNA DUFF AND END OF THE HIKE
Depending on how you feel, you can walk to Lake Duff for a quick dip in its glacial waters. Afterward, we descend down the mountain back to the trailhead and make our way through Southern Beech forest to Villa Cerro Castillo. After a yummy lunch, we have time for a shower before continuing our journey to the airport. 10km (6.2 miles) of hiking - about 6 hours
maximum altitude is about 4,700 feet.
GROUP SIZE & GUIDING STAFF
Minimum is 2 people and maximum of 10 people.
Transport is in minivans that normally seat 8 to 14 people.
During the summer months (December to March), you can expect to have some nice weather and warm days. However, you also need to bear in mind that it may rain - a lot - no matter the season, so you should come prepared for potential rainfall.
Remember: the weather in Patagonia is unpredictable and may move between all four seasons in one day. It is recommended to come prepared.
Minimum age is 15 years and are considered adults.
WHAT YOU NEED TO BRING
Passengers need to be prepared for fluctuating weather that can move from summer to winter in a day.
Essential equipment includes:
Rates from November 2019 to March 2020
Regular Departures. Every Friday* from November to March
*Recommended departure day
Do you want a private departure for this trip? We can do it, please send us an email
STARTING / FINISHING POINTS
Active travelers with an adventurous spirit and a positive attitude will enjoy this trek. To have the best experience possible it is essential to be in good physical condition before you arrive. It is not recommended to regard this trek as a means of getting into shape or losing excess weight. Start a program of conditioning well before departure.