Cerro Huemul Circuit

Cerro Huemul Circuit – Patagonia: El Chalten: Trek along one of the less visited areas of this national park; crossing some high passes with views at the most spectacular valleys and glaciers. The Southern Patagonian ice field forms part of the backdrop to this trek route. After all; it is the second largest extrapolar icefield that exists. It is the bigger of two remnant parts of the Patagonian Ice Sheet which covered all of southern Chile during the last glacial period, locally called the Llanquihue glaciation.

Summary Itinerary

1: This is a warm up day, hiking mostly through the forest on a nice trail until we reach Laguna Toro campsite.

2: After breaking our camp we begin our trek towards Paso del Viento

3: Today we follow the trail that takes us alongside the Viedma glacier crossing the Huemul Pass camping at Icebergs Bay.

4: From this last camp we have the chance to see some icebergs from the calving Viedma glacier and get spectacular pictures at sunrise. Return to El Chalten

Highlights: Windy Pass, South Patagonian Icefield view, colourful lakes and trekking near by and along Viedma glacier. Wilderness and pure nature.

Technical Difficulty: low – medium
Physical Demand: Intermediate
Duration of the Itinerary: 4 days
Starting Point: El Chaltén
Number of clients per group: Min 2
Day 1
El Chalten - Laguna Toro
An early departure from El Chaltén as we have 6 hours trekking through the forest until we reach Laguna Toro campsite. This hike passes through beautiful meadows whilst enjoying amazing views of the impressive Patagonian spires of Fitz-Roy and Cerro Torre. The Toro campsite is located at the edge of the forest, thus providing good protection from the wind.
  • Distance: 15 km +500
  • Trekking time: 6/7 hours
  • Physical Intensity: Medium
  • Accommodation: Wild camp
  • All meals: Snacks (B, L, D)
Day 2
Viento Pass & Southern Ice Field
After breaking our camp we begin our trek towards the day’s first challenge: crossing the river Túnel via a zip line or wading depending on the river conditions. Then we continue walking uphill along big and spectacular moraines towards del Viento Pass – privileged viewing point of the Southern Ice Field. The name of this pass means Windy in Spanish, so we expect to feel the full-force of these notorious gales. Once over and onto the western slopes of the mountain we descend in direction to Paso del Viento camp, an ideal resting place with a crystal clear creek running next to our tents.
  • Distance: 13 km +900/-450
  • Trekking time: 7-8 hours
  • Physical Intensity: Medium-High
  • Accommodation: Wild camp
  • All meals: snacks (B, L, D)
Day 3
Huemul Pass - Bahia de los Tempanos
Today we follow the trail that takes us alongside the Viedma glacier. We will always see the glacier from above, thus giving us spectacular views along the way. Along the day we pass by some sparkling mountain lakes and after lunch the hard work awaits us as we trek up to the Huemul Pass. At the top we could have the chance to see some Condors flying around since there is a huge “Condorera”. From the top of this wide pass and after taking the necessary time for resting, we have to descend a long and steep way thru the forest to get to our next camp at Bahia de los Tempanos (Icebergs), on the shore of Viedma lake with view to the glacier face.
  • Distance: 18 km +300/-900
  • Trekking time: 7-8 hours
  • Physical Intensity: Medium-High
  • Accommodation: Wild camp
  • All meals, snacks (B, L, D)
Day 4
Bahia Tunel - El Chalten

From this last camp we have the chance to see some icebergs from the calving Viedma glacier and get spectacular pictures at sunrise. After breakfast we have a fairly easy trek to get to Bahía Túnel, including a last zip line. From the end of the trail we complete the day with a transfer that will take us to El Chalten 16 km away.

  • Distance: 14 km
  • Trekking time: 5-6 hours
  • Physical Intensity: Low - Medium
  • Accommodation: Not included.
  • Meals (B,L, snacks)

Services Included

  • All camping Equipment (incl. sleeping bags)
  • Professional bilingual guide
  • Meals as outlined in the itinerary
  • Park entrance fees

Tour Info

Breakfast x 3
Lunch x 4
Dinner x 3
Private bilingual guide during the trek
All meals, transfers, permits during the trekking
1 assistant guide every 4 participants. Rate 1:4
Technical gear when required
Tents and any gear necessary except what is considered personal
VHF radio or satellite communication
Entrance tickets and permits
Note: all participants must carry their own sleeping bag and mat plus the necessary equipment/food for the program provided. (4 to 5 kgs per person)
Hotels before & after (can be organised as part of trip)
Tips for crew
Domestic flights (can be organised as part of trip)
Any additional extras
There will be a pre-trek briefing held usually the evening before departure, at your hotel, to go over the details of the trek and any specific requirements not already captured
Prior to setting off we recommend you steer clear of street food and only eat in good restaurants, to avoid any stomach complaints. Peruvian food can be spicy, it can be strong and rich for many European diets. Likewise with tap water, it is largely untreated, so please avoid at all costs on arrival and stick to bottled water only or sterilised water if you have the right equipment.
We’ll ensure that we cater for all of your dietary needs, at the point of booking we’ll collect this information from you. We can secure special menu requests also for your trek party.
We are able to customise our treks to suit you, but usually our treks are guided by a professional bilingual guide, arriero (horseman) and mules to carry all equipment (passenger horses also available on request), and a mountain cook. They become a large part of your trekking expedition and it’s a great experience working together.
This is a really important part of your trip planning process, please find a link below which explains a little more about preparing for altitude.

Attached below are a couple of links which will explain how to prepare for your trip & trek in advance of your arrival. We recommend being prepared in advance to save time & stress whilst you’re in Patagonia.

Required equipment for this program:
• 55 to 65 litres backpack
• Sleeping bag for -12º C comfort and mat (Synthetic or feather)
• Cup, spoon, bowl
• Trekking poles
• Sun-glasses
• Headlamp with new batteries
• 1-litre bottle (nalgene ideally)
• Sunblock (factor 35 or more)
• Lips sun block
• Minimum personal hygiene items
• 0.5L Thermo/vacuum flask

• Goretex waterproof jacket with hood
• Softshell jacket with hood (2nd layer)
• Waterproof light over pants
• Waterproof trekking/hiking boots
• Trekking trousers
• Underwear synthetic fabric t-shirt and trousers (optional)
• Trekking socks
• Windstoper/waterproof type gloves
• Warm hut and cap
• Neckerchief or Buff for neck protection (optional)
• Light feather or synthetic warm jacket for the night
• Comfortable trekking shoes and Crocs (for resting at the camps and river wading)

From June through to the end of September, we’re offering one person free on all of our treks (in Peru) for group sizes of 3+. If you are a group of 2 you can add one person for free, or if you’re a group of 3 the third person joins free and so on.

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Not Included
  • Domestic flights (can be incorporated on request)
  • Transfers (can be arranged as part of package)
  • Accommodation required before or after
  • Any additional extras
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