GPT33P (Rio Ibanez)
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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
- 2024-Jan- 14 to 2024-Jan-16/ 3 days/hiking/SOBO/ 33h/ 33h-b/33h-a/ 33h-P/Paulina
At first, I wanted to do RR, but as the recent reports about the river crossing where not very encouraging, I decided to play it safelty, so I just mixed some sections. I started in Villa Cerro Castillo, till X 33h [ 5.5/554] it was a very peaceful, nice trail, with beautiful views on Cerra Castillo. There were some fence crossing, but not very annoying. After the intersection, so once I joined the road X-725, it was less interesting, walk on a gravel road. I think this part of RR is better to hitch-hike ( it's possible and not very difficult to catch a car on this way). Once I reached the big lakes ( beautiful views!) and some wanderful camping spots [ S 46.17790 W 072.32049] between Lago Alto and Lago Lapparet, I took 33h-b. At the beginning the trail was l crossing a forest used by locals as wood supply, but later ( around the place where it joined 33h-a), the landscape was amazing! Especially the part with lakes and settlers.
The last section was on 33h-01A. The cannion of Rio Claro and later the waterfall are beautiful, but for some hikers a long distance on gravel road on this section can be annoying so it's probably better to hitch-hike ( not a lot of cars but still possible).
I bought my ticket for ferry from Puerto Ibanez to Chile Chico without any problem 1h30 before the ferry departure.
The mix of these 4 sections + hitch-hiking it's a good option for bad weather or high river level on RR. Some parts are very beautiful, and the less interesting parts ( long distances on gravel roads) it's possible to cover by car.
- 2023-Dec-18 / 1 day / Packrafting / SOBO / RR / Tom Pieper
I think this section deserves definitely more emphasis! The landscape changes dramatically here after Section 32. The green forests are gone and give rise to an impressive red-brown canyon landscape with little oasis in between. On a good day the views back to cerro Castillo are just magnificent. Also the river speed was swift and you can easily make it in one day to Puerto Ibanez. The sandbanks can be avoided if you stick to the slightly more turquoise waters. I did not deflated the packraft at the portage and just carried it on my back. Keep care of the thorny Calafate bushes when you ascend the sandy dune at the beginning of the portage. The sand can be somehow wearisome here.
- Route description by Kara Davis after Season 2017/18:
Walk out of Villa Cerro Castillo along a dirt road to the put-in for Río Ibañez located at a rocky beach. At the time of our hike, there was construction going on in this area so don’t be surprised if the put-in changes. The river is wide, slow moving, and at lower flows there are many sandbars hidden just below the surface that will beach even packrafts. After about 20.5 km, packrafters must take out to portage around a Class V+ waterfall at a sandy beach surrounded by steep gravel slopes. The portage is a short cross-country route through farmland which ends at a gate. Just past the gate is Highway X-735. The put-in for the second part of the Río Ibañez float is at a sandy beach. This section of the river to Puerto Ingeniero Ibañez is also very slow moving. Strong winds may make packrafting impractical.
Town: Puerto Ingeniero Ibañez Puerto Ingeniero Ibañez is a small town with a few food options and a small grocery store. The docks for the ferry to Chile Chico across Lago General Carrera is located on the southeast edge of town.
Resupply and Accommodation
Resupply and Accommodation in nearby Towns
- Puerto Ibanez: Pirámide Hostal B&B is a nice and cheap place top stay (25.000 Pesos including breakfast). Veronica is a very friendly host.
Resupply and Accommodation along the Route
Transport to and from Route
- The Regular Route of GPT33H was developed for hiking and a packraft is neither needed nor recommended even if a packraft may be deployed in northbound and southbound direction.
Most packrafters that travel southbound will probably opt for section GPT33P to float on the lower Rio Ibañez from Villa Cerro Castillo to Puerto Ingeniero Ibañez. This packrafting route has a water proportion of 80%. In comparison, on GPT33H the water proportion is in best case 20%. But this water proportion can only be archived on an exceptionally calm day when wind permits packrafting all the way from Puerto Avellano to Levicán along the shore of Lago General Carrera. On most summer days strong wind and resulting high waves will impede packrafting.
But for packrafters that travel northbound GPT33H provides an interesting option. These packrafters might attempt to cross Lago General Carrera from Fachinal to Puerto Avellano either with a motorboat or by packraft, then hike the very attractive centerpiece of GPT33H past the Torres de Avellano and conclude this section by packrafting the final 21 km (Rio Sin Nombre, Laguna Verde and the upper Rio Ibañez) to finish in Villa Cerro Castillo. For more information to this option see the section description of GPT34P and the comment to the section combination GPT33H with GPT32.
- Combining GPT33H with GPT32
If hiking GPT33H with a packraft northbound than the packraft can be inflated at the bridge over Rio Sin Nombre to paddle 2 km downstream on this river, cross the 1 km wide Laguna Verde on its western shore and continue to the upper Rio Ibañez to float down 18 km on the upper Rio Ibañez towards Villa Cerro Castillo. From the last recommended exit on the upper Rio Ibañez it is only a 3 km walk into Villa Cerro Castillo. This route combines GPT33H Option 3 with GPT33H Option 8 and GPT32 Option 6.
Permits, Entry Fees and Right-of-Way Issues
Links to other Resources
Retired Section Article GPT33P - Río Ibañez