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A scenic trail ride through one of the most beautiful places on earth, Torres del Paine National Park in Chilean Patagonia.
The route takes you across open pampas, past lakes and up to the face of impressive glaciers. You will also see ‘Cuernos del Paine’, the famous granite towers from both the south and the north side of the massif.
Along the way you will experience a first hand view of Patagonian estancia life, including the challenges faced by those who farm sheep and cattle in this remote corner of the world.
You should be a competent rider, used to riding in open spaces and confident enough to try a different riding style. The tack is Chilean in style and utilises local materials. The saddles are basic frames with felt, leather and sheepskin layered on top. Most of the horses go in simple bridles with snaffle bits.
There are opportunities for faster riding where the terrain permits, with slower riding in the steeper sections. There are some days of seven or more hours in the saddle, so you need to be riding fit.
The horses are willing, forward-going Chilean Criollos and Criollo crosses and stand at around 14-15hh. You ride horses belonging to the different estancias as you journey along, so you may have up to four different set of horses.
Hard hats are mandatory.
Accommodation is in a combination of park hotels, working estancias and guest estancias, chosen wherever possible for their locations and panoramic views.
The rooms are mostly twins, all with en-suite facilities. Double rooms are scarce, but we can request one for you with advance notice. The working estancias offer an authentic family-stay environment, but the accommodation on these properties tends to be simpler.
A single supplement is payable to guarantee single occupancy. The number of single rooms is limited and so if having your own room is particularly important to you, then please let us know in advance so we can check availability for you.
Typical Patagonian food is served throughout. Patagonia is a culture largely founded on the farming of sheep and cattle, so preparing, cooking and eating meat, especially asados (BBQ) is an important part of local life.
We don't have any future dates for this ride, since arrival into Chile is currently very complicated due to Covid regulations. If this ride cannot run at all for the 2022-2023 season, then we hope the restrictions will have lifted in time for the 2023-2024 season.
INCLUDES Riding; boat trip to Balmaceda; guides; meals (from dinner on Day 1 to breakfast on Day 10).
Optional Glacier Grey boat trip on Day 4 (must be booked in advance) $140.00 .
SMALL GROUP SUPPLEMENTS apply which depend on the total number of people booked:
2-3 riders in group $842.11
4-5 riders in group $421.05
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT No single supplement if prepared to share otherwise $990.00 to request a single room. Please note the number of single rooms is limited.
PAYABLE LOCALLY Other meals; drinks; tips.
NEAREST AIRPORT Punta Arenas.
TRANSFERS Transfers between Punta Arenas and Puerto Natales are included at set times. Alternatively there is a very reliable and inexpensive bus service which we can pre-book for you.
The ride begins and ends in Puerto Natales. Collection is possible from Punta Arenas or from Puerto Natales, but there is generally more choice of flights to Punta Arenas.
If flying to Puerto Natales, airport transfers are included and can be arranged to suit your flight times. On the first day, your flight should arrive by around 17:00 so that you have time to settle in to your room before the ride briefing. On departure day your flight should leave after midday.
If flying to Punta Arenas, road transfers to Puerto Natales are included on the first and last days of the ride at set times. On arrival day, the transfer will leave Punta Arenas airport at 15:00, so your flight should be scheduled to arrive by 14:00 or before. On departure day the transfer will leave Puerto Natales at 10.00, arriving Punta Arenas airport at c. 12:30/13.00. Your flight should be scheduled to depart at 15:00 or later.
If you plan to stay in Punta Arenas before or after the ride, then hotel collections and drop-offs can be arranged.
If flying to Punta Arenas but your times do not fit in with these guidelines and you do not wish to have additional overnight accommodation, then it is possible to make the journey between Punta Arenas and Puerto Natales by public bus (which costs c. USD 15 each way). The journey takes 2.5-3 hours. Buses are pre-booked, with comfortable, allocated seating and depart from either Punta Arenas town centre or from the airport.
Set in southern Chilean Patagonia, the starting point for trips to Antarctica.
The weather in Patagonia is very changeable and you will be riding in conditions including: sun, wind, snow, rain, hail and sometimes all of these conditions in one day! Patagonia is often windy and so good weather can be quickly replaced by bad and vice versa.
The trails only run during the spring and summer months when the weather should be more settled, but you should still be prepared for most eventualities.
Wanted to go to Patagonia for 40 years, so finally made it! Everything about the ride, location, accommodation and most importantly the horses were beyond my expectations, and I have been on many horse riding adventures.
If you like riding in remote places and enjoy dramatic scenery, then this ride should definitely be on your wish list.
As the saying goes, "there's no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing". This trip takes place in an extreme environment, so you'll need to pack accordingly. But don't worry, we'll send you a detailed kit list when you book!