It was the fifth and last day of our expedition in the Torres del Paine! From the Torres Central campsite, the last hike leads to the Base de Las Torres. This is the most famous of the park as you reach the foot of the 3 granite towers, the Torres del Paine, in front of a milky glacier lake. It is also known as the most difficult because it’s only a steep climb for 4 hours.
As we will have to go back to our departure point, we tried to lighten our bags… So we stuffed all what we didn’t need into my backpack that will stay at the campsite and we put the minimum we would need in the other bag… which was still a little too heavy. The best thing we should have known before starting this trek is that it is highly recommended to bring a small bag that will be used as day pack for these walks… We will be prepared for the next time!
So we started by a long and warm climb among a lot of tourists and some horses as you can go to the intermediate rest point, the Refugio Chileno, riding one of them. This climb was killing us but the view at the top was very pretty (although not as impressive as what we saw at the beginning of our trek…)!
From this panorama, it was not very long to reach the Pass of the Wind, which is very well named (even if the wind was really calm that morning), before descending into the impressive valley to reach the Refugio (main picture of the post).
At the Refugio, we had done only half of the climb to the mirador. It still meant quite a lot of time to go and we had a hard stop in the afternoon as we had to catch the bus which would take us back to Puerto Natales. So we decided to have our delicious sandwiches, enjoy the scenery and as the wind got stronger and stronger, we jumped on the trail back to the campsite.
Back in the camping area, we stopped at the hotel Las Torres which has a good restaurant with an incredible view of the 3 granite peaks. To comfort us for not having reached the mirador, we offered ourselves a good meal… This is our way of being sportives, I guess!
On the bus, on the way to Puerto Natales, I was watching the animals in the fields. I could not stop thinking of our arrival, 5 days ago, when the same sheep were literally sitting in the grass, gathered together, head down, waiting for the violent gusts of wind to calm down! Tonight, they were grazing peacefully in the sun and I could admire one last time the fantastic Cuernos without any clouds!
It is decided, on our way back in January, we will stop again in the park and we will do some small hikes that allow to have astonishing views of the Paine mountains!