GPT46 (Seno Ultima Esperanza)
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* Start Date to Finish Date (use Format YYYY-MMM-DD) / Duration in Days / Hiking or Packrafting / Travel Direction (SOBO for Southbound or NOBO Northbound) / Chosen Route and/or Option Name (RR for Regular Route) / Names or Alias
Summary with remarks to route that are considered useful for other hikers and packrafters. Include alerts, suggestions and personal perception of attractiveness and difficulties.
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- 1 Section Log, Alerts and Suggestions
- 2 Resupply and Accommodation
- 3 Transport to and from Route
- 4 Permits, Entry Fees and Right-of-Way Issues
- 5 Links to other Resources
- 6 Images
Section Log, Alerts and Suggestions
- 9 to 12 April 2023 / Ishay / Route from Rio serrano to connect to GPT 46 RR sobo / 4 days
Overall - Beautiful and remote section with great scenery and colors. unused trails, snow, cold, wetness, mud and fallen trees slowed me down and made it a little harder. was worth the effort though. I got lucky and had good weather. would have been miserable otherwise. I saw no one but cows until i reached Estancia Perales. Following the post of Anna and Christopher (which i also met in el chalten!) and in order to avoid crossing Glacier Chacabuco on the RR i decided to take the OSM path that is climbing directly from Rio serrano and then reconnect with the RR on the way down. The trail is marked with blue sticks (see pictures) throughout the whole way. I think that all of the trails in this area are built for the 'Ultra Fiord' - an annual, and apparently quite popular trail running race that takes place in the beginning of February. from the beginning and on the pass the sticks are well placed and quite easy to follow. It seems like they put them up recently. on the way down it gets a little less clear. where i saw a lot of broken and out of place ones. above the treeline all is covered with snow now. below the treeline it is super wet and muddy with some overgrown parts and a lot of fallen trees which makes progress slow and at times frustrating.I imagine it will be much more convenient during "high season".
From Puerto Natales i hitched a ride to the junction that leads to Rio Serrano. I then walked the 2 km on the road to the place. From my impression It's just hotels and cabins there so i wouldn't count on it if you need to resupply. followed the osm track to the woods and started walking. Really nice and easy walk. In the beginning there are some junctions leading to different trails. I got confused so just pay attention to the GPS. Then you start climbing. The Torres del Paine range opens up to your back as you climb. with the afternoon autumn colors it is super pretty. soon it started snowing so i found a little spot in the trees and crawled into my sleeping bag. woke up with bright sky and climbed towards the pass. all of this strech was covered in snow, so the blue sticks were really helpful in following the trail. in a clear day the pass has really nice views. quite windy tho. walking freely in an untouched snow in such an open terrain was super fun!! a lot of postholing but nothing dangerous really. just tiring. When getting towards the downhill to the valley the trail is merging with the RR. to go down the sticks are leading you to the right which looked like they went up and down again going over another small laguna and then to the woods. The RR seemed shorter but i didn't find any signage.. better off follow the sticks. I spent as much time figuring out the best and safest way to go down then i would've spend following the longer signed route. Back to the woods on the RR.. the trail roughly follows the river all the way down. from here on the trail is little more harder to follow. many cow tracks that seem like the trail but lead you nowhere. the annoying part was the mud and ponds on the trail that leave you constantly wet without any opportunity to dry because of the low temperatures. Rather then that the forest is nice and change its face as you walk. every now and then you go out of the woods and get a nice look to the surrounding mountains to keep your morals high. saw some stations of trail crews along the way. many freaked out cows as well (; 10 km before estancia perales there is a junction. two trails following the river from both sides. The RR is staying on the west side of the river but it might be worth checking out the other one that also take a turn and go over Paso Victor Álvarez and down directly to ruta Y-290 which gives some interesting hiking options. Arrived at Estancia Perales around 13:00. really nice people there, spoke with them a little and they invited me to eat a delicious soup and bread with the workers in the backroom. awesome stuff. They were preparing the tables for a group that is coming back from a boat tour of glaciers balmaceda and serrano and stop for lunch in the estancia on the way back to town. You can hop on the boat for 20k clp. 45 minutes. no other transporte to town from there as far as I'm concerned. since it was a beautiful day i opted for walking on the dirt road. was nice walking along the lake. cars didn't pass me. The day after i arrived to ruta Y-290 and hitched back to Puerto Natales.
- SoBo/January 22/Tobias Schorcht and Caterina Bormioli/7 Days/Method: Hiking
One of the most challenging Trails for me on the GPT so far (Crossing Glaciar Chacabuco is dangerous by now). Probably have to change the main route. The trail from Río Serrano to Puerto Toro is good visible, because they use the trail for horseback riding. Some parts of were very muddy even though we went in dry conditions. The estancia puerto toro has been abounded since 2 years. They use to have a ultra trail race to estancia perales. Last time when the race took place was 4 years ago. All the trails around are mostly marked with blue sticks. It seems that the cows are chewing on them. Crossed glacier Chacabuco in perfect conditions. BUT: It is very difficult by now. The Glaciar shrinked so much much, that the original access is the ice can not be used by now (very steep morain). Took us 1.5hours to find an alternative, which was not safe as as well. I spotted a alternative and discuss it with Jan. The glaciar was still partly covered with snow (20/01/23). Most of the glacier columns were good visible. I recommend crampons and a rope. From how the glaciar has been changed, I guess it has been much easier to cross some years ago. Arrived at Estancia Perales after 5 days and had the best Coca Cola of our life. Took the Catamaran back to Puerto Natales (20 000 CPS, 3p.m. every day in high season). I returned 2 days later by bus (10 000 CLP, “Tourismo 21 de Mayo”, every day 12a.m.) and completed by by gravel road walking. Packrafting might be possible (SoBo). There are many camping spots among the coast. Wind is getting stronger towards Natales and appears usually from the north.
Resupply and Accommodation
Resupply and Accommodation in nearby Towns
Resupply and Accommodation along the Route
Transport to and from Route
Permits, Entry Fees and Right-of-Way Issues
Links to other Resources
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