THE BIG CHALLENGE, TREK TO THE TOWERS BASE

This was our day per Ecocamp:

Torres del Paine National Park, Chile 9 hours 14 miles 3000 feet elevation

The goal of our fifth day of our 7-day Trek will be to complete the most famous trekking trail in Torres del Paine National Park! We will walk from the campsite towards HosterĂ­a Las Torres before ascending to Ascencio Valley on the Tower’s eastern face. Mountain ridges, beech forests and small rivers line the scenic walk towards the valley. Our big challenge comes in the form of the steep moraine, a huge mass of boulders which will lead us to that iconic base-view of the Towers – Three gigantic granite monoliths, the remains of a great cirque sheared away by the forces of glacial ice. After a tough uphill climb, the Towers eventually come into full view, rising majestically before us, with the glacial lake visible below.

We had had some bad weather on this big challenge day so ecocamp pushed out one day. This gave us a chance to rest and regroup. I had a massage, Sally stretched and we took a yoga class. Later in the afternoon we set out with full weather gear and trekking poles to the lower refugio that had internet for a fee. On our way we passed the British Honeymooners Jess and James, who are just adorable. James asked where we were off to and we responded, the refugio.. going to use the internet… James politely points and says, “just there?” LOL! He thought for sure we were full throttle going for a big hike! HA, HA!

The big day came and with much anticipation, not only the weather which was the most important but the strenuous trek UP! Then to get up to the towers and not have them obstructed by cloud cover, wind and rain. We were on the trail by 6:00AM.

This area called moraine, is very difficult to walk on. It is loose rock and with each step you have to concentrate on your foot placement. In the forest area the tree roots grow up on the trail again needing constant attention. It was worth every step, however, I found the entire week of trekking mentally and physically challenging. We did make it to the top and although we didn’t get a 100% unobstructed view, we were rewarded with it’s majesty.

Early Morning Towers
Regrouping
Francesca’s Fall
The group
Yippie
We made it!
Janet and Sally
Coming down with Jess and James
We passed this vaquero on our way down. Photo by Sally
Happy Baby Yoga stretch at base camp

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