Sunday, December 19, 2010

Torres del Paine circuit

We have been loving the luxury of time. It meant we spent 10 days trekking both the O and the W in Torres del Paine (enlarge the map and you can figure that out). (Some "run" through the whole trek in just 6 days.)
Most people visiting stay on the "front" of the park, hiking up mountain valleys for some impressive views. This makes the backside super appealing for those with more than just a few days and able to handle being "out there." We loved that part of the hike and by the time we got back to the busy parts we were in love with the place so the dayhikers didn´t disturb our fun.

The first day we could see the Torres well; few low clouds
We experienced every kind of weather, from snow to rain, from sun to wild winds. We also hiked from close to sea level up to a 1,200 m pass. There the winds were ferocious ... and fun! When we passed over the pass we got to see the impressive Grey Glacier which is part of the huge Southern Icefield that covers much of southern Chile.

We also had the pleasure of making some fine friends along the way. The nature of the full trek is such that people tend to more or less use the same camps along the way, making for repeated encounters and opportunities for interesting conversations. It also seemed that the little tribe we trekked along side with was filled with people who travel a lot - which inspires thougths of new travels for us :)

Here are a few pics to tell you bits of the story of this amazing trek. By the way, unlike the other two long treks we´ve done, this we did on our own. No guides needed here, as it is impossible to get lost. The trail is deeply groved, ih parts very eroded and thus you really have to work at getting off it. Also, we ate a few times at the refugios and some sell salami, crackers and chocolate allowing us to not have to carry 10 days worth of food, which would have been impossible.
Day 1 of hiking. Fun in the rain, snow.
Lakes, forests, snowy mountains and sun and clouds.

The woods section. There is such a varied landscape.
End of the huge Southern Icefield.

Jan blown over at the super windy John Gardner Pass.

Us. Having fun :)
Jan had a temporary allergy to one of the
beautiful wildflowers that were in bloom.
Evening light from the beach at Grey. Just gorgeous.


  1. Hi there amigas!

    I've just spent a good hour armchair travelling and being amazed by your continuing adventures!

    Your blog is outstanding - have you considered travel writing as a source of income? I enjoy reading all the interesting facts and information, and the heart, fun and joy that comes through in your writing (and photos) really bring your adventures alive for me.

    I love the photo of the two of you. And of course the pinguinos! And the video/audio with their calls - very special - thanks for posting it. It's better than National Geographic because I know you were there to hear it and that is closer to me being there too. And Jan with her new yoga pose "upward lifting pink flamingo"!! : )

    much love, Monika

  2. Hi Monika!
    Good to hear from you ... make money through travel soudsn like a calling...

    More of the good stuff will be up in the next day or so.

    Ciao for now, Inga

  3. Hola Chicas,
    Good to read and see you after a 10 day passage on the dark side of the moon! Thanks for the map: it helps me to visualize the trails you did. Pics are great especially the one with the both of you: it takes much love to perform such a trip !! Some day I will do Torres del Paine but I will hike in the front of the park with the crowd !!
    Thanks Guy

  4. Greetings from the Eastern Seaboard of Canada. Simply the happiest wishes for New Year's Day to you Jan, and you Inga, and a truly wonderful year throughout 2011.

    All is well here. PEI finally received snow on December 27- 28, snow that is staying put. Yeah! Am at home for 5 days before working again on January 4th. Splendid news - I spent a peaceful and restorative (and fun!) time with family the week previous.

    Generous you two, have received two postcards...the more recent arrived on Dec 31st adding a simply special touch to my day (postcard from Machu Picchu dated Nov 29).

    You have oft been in my thoughts. I much look forward to contact in person...but not too am sure you want to squeeze every second possible out of your epic travels.

    Have yourselves an amazing first 2011 day!

    With my love and best, best greetings...again Happy New Year, of course.

    Mau. January 1, 2011 - 9:51 a.m. Atlantic Time.

  5. Hello Mau! Thank you for your wonderful note - a lovely surprise this New Year's to see you on our blog. Sending you hugs, kisses and all our best wishes for a fantastic, blow your mind 2011! Jan and Inga xoxox