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mccallboater

Santiago Chile 1st week of March - what to do?

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My daughter is a Rotary exhange student there. During our visit, we will have about 4 days to get into the mountains. What's your dream backpack/easy climb within that time frame if you were starting in Santiago, Chile? Fly south to the Futalafu country? Bio Bio? Boulder on the beaches? Day hike from some hut? What?

 

I've never been in S. America, so please give me info. Hopefully I'll convert it to knowledge, then wisdom if I'm lucky.

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I would say that depends on what type of trip you want to do during that time. I was down there last fall semester (that would be fall here in the states) and really liked the lake district and patagonia. Both have amazing sites to see, but could require more time than have. If you want to go south look into the area around Puerto Montt and Puerto Varas and a little bit farther south. Parque Pumalin is supposedly amazing with some amazing old growth alerces. If you want to go north some friends of mine went to Parque Lauca which is up in the altiplano near the bolivian border and their pictures looked very cool, flamingos, large lakes and picturesque stratovolcano's rising from the shores.

If you want to fly when in Chile look into buying tickets on www.lan.com, they usually offer good last minute discounts.

Also if you want to go the touristy route, Pucon is the outdoor sports mecca in chile, climbing of volcán Villarica (an active volcano), mountain biking, rafting, etc.

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Parque Pumalin is quite cool, but if you've only 4 days ex-Santiago I'm not sure how much you'll see. The ferry only runs a couple of days a week and it's rather remote. That applies to the Futalufu and BioBio as well; anything down the Carreterra Austral is out there. You'll likely spend the majority of your time getting there in 4 days. If you at all can, extend it by a week, at least. The lake district is pretty - but avoid Pucon, it's a dump filled with package tourists.

 

A friend of mine was in Lauca around August; the huts are rather flexible in opening, but it was a good time.

 

Around Santiago Valparaiso is very cool, but it's not mountainous.

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i'm also heading down that week and heading out to vine del mar and concon. anyone know if there is a good climbing or bouldering spot around there?

 

thanks!

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That is very little time to head south, even to the Lakes District. If you want a little adventure, take a taxi up past the border with Chile and Argentina and get dropped off at the start of the trail for the approach to Aconcagua. You may even be able to make it to basecamp and back at 14k. Would provide a little adventure, it is fairly close to Santiago. Otherwise head to Vina del Mar or maybe Pucon. If I were going there I would extend my trip and head down to Patagonia to do the circuit in Torres del Paine ( the best backpacking and most scenic trip I've ever done)or at least head in to Los Glacieres National Park for nice views of Fitzroy and Torre (pretty cool as well).....

Edited by ryland_moore

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Torres del Paine is sweet! This photo does not do it justice (damn point-and-shoot camera), but my disappointment in the trip's photos inspired my (very expensive) passion for nature photography.

 

Los_Cuernos_1.jpg

 

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One of my dream places to visit in Chile is the Atacama Desert. I imagine it would be like hiking on the moon.

 

Btw, if you are considering Torres del Paine, keep in mind that the weather is extremely unpredictable and the ozone is very thin, so you'll need to pack accordingly. If you decide to go, feel free to PM me.

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Paine has had horrible weather so far this year :tdown: Its even been raining in town here almost all week. Almost all climbers have been shut down this season, brit Nick Turner and partner made it within 300m of the summit of the south tower via the south face, one of the parks long standing problems.

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