Pingo Valley Trek

Explore this wild and secluded valley all for yourself. Enjoy spectacular views of multiple glaciers and trek back in time to see evidence of Patagonia's fascinating prehistoric heritage. Explore this wild and secluded valley all for yourself. Enjoy spectacular views of multiple glaciers and trek back in time to see evidence of Patagonia's fascinating prehistoric heritage.
4 Days
$1,495

Pingo Valley Trek - 4 - $1,495

Trip Summary and Itinerary Map

  • Hike to the Pingo Valley through ancient woodland and amongst indigenous Patagonian wildlife 
  • Explore the fascinating ichthyosaurus graveyard, full of fossils
  • Hike to the summit of Cerro Zapata
  • Camp in a remote Patagonian campsite

Start from Puerto Natales and end at Puerto Natales

Landmarks visited on Pingo Valley Trek

Operator's Itinerary

Day 1: Hike into Pingo Valley

An early morning transfer will pick you up from your Puerto Natales hotel and take you to Torres del Paine National Park. After entering the National Park, we’ll drive to Grey Lake and begin our 6-hour hike to the Pingo Valley, the most ancient one of Torres del Paine. This is an extremely quiet valley and your group will experience the peace of trekking alone, accompanied only by stirring scenery, and (if we’re lucky) the watchful gaze of the foxes, woodpeckers and huemuls (Andean deer) that live here. Hikers will share the weight of common equipment, carrying food and tents between them. A group porter and cook will carry the portable toilet and cook meals during your time at the Pingo Valley campsite. This is a remote camping experience, staying at a basic campsite without access to hot water - but the reward is clearly the transcendent backdrop of Torres del Paine’s untamed landscapes on all sides. Upon arrival, we set up camp, settle in and recharge with a nourishing evening meal.

Journey: 2 hours 

Hike: 6 hours / 14km

Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Accommodation: Camping at Pingo Valley Campsite


Day 2: Explore an ichthyosaurus graveyard

Today you will hike to the rocky slopes near Tyndall Glacier, to the site of a precious paleontological discovery. 46 examples of ichthyosaurus fossils, a dolphin-like “fish lizard” that lived 245 million to 90 million years ago in the Mesozoic Era, are seen here, as if etched into the rock itself. Adult and embryo specimens are present, and show the remains of what is likely a 'pack' that was entombed by catastrophic mudflow that rushed into the underwater canyons they hunted. We make our way back to our campsite via the same route and settle in to share a good meal. Tonight take time to stretch and rest: tomorrow’s hike will be our most challenging.

Hike: 12 hours / 8km

Meals: Breakfast, box lunch and dinner

Accommodation: Camping at Pingo Valley Campsite


Day 3: Full-day hike to the summit of Cerro Zapata

Our day begins at around 4am and our destination is Cerro Zapata (1590m / 5220ft). This is not a technical hike, but it is long and requires hikers to interact closely with the landscape: weaving through forests of native trees, crossing snowy terrain and bouldering across huge rocks carved out by the glaciers’ ancient movements. The summit of Cerro Zapata has 360° views of fantastic Patagonian scenery; it is surrounded by lakes, glaciers, mountain ranges and the Southern Patagonian Ice Field. Its peak is an ideal lookout for glaciers and the lakes they give birth to: from there, Glaciers Grey, Tyndall, Geikie, Pingo, Olguín (and others still unexplored) are laid out below you. We take the same route on our return to camp.

Hike: 12 -14hours / 26km

Meals: Breakfast, box lunch and dinner

Accommodation: Camping at Pingo Valley Campsite


Day 4: Return hike and transfer back to Puerto Natales

This morning we break camp and begin our return hike which takes us across the grassy steppe and undulating slopes of the valley, including energy-boosting views of the Paine Massif along the way. At the end of our trek we’ll meet our driver, who will transfer us back to Puerto Natales.

Hike: 6 hours / 14km

Journey: 2 hours 

Prices, Departures and Inclusions

The trip price varies depending on group size as shown below (valid until April 2022):

4-8 people - USD $1,095 per person

3 people - USD $1,295 per person

2 people - USD $1,495 per person

Departure dates available on request - please contact us to dicsuss your preferred date.

Includes

  • All private transportation as indicated in the itinerary
  • Entrance fee to Torres del Paine National Park
  • Three nights at Zapata campsite
  • 4 seasons tent (double occupancy)
  • 1 porter (to carry portable toilet)
  • Equipment: cooking utensils, plate, retractable bowl, folding chair
  • All meals as indicated in the itinerary
  • Professional hiking guides (English-Spanish speaking)

Excludes

  • Any additional nights
  • Medical expenses
  • Travel insurance
  • Personal expenses
  • Breakfast on Day 1, lunch on Day 4
  • Sleeping bag and/or sleeping mat
  • Alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages
  • Gratuities for guide and driver

Questions about this Trip?