Tag Archives: w trek

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Packing list for the w trek in Patagonia

As a vegan trekking in Torres Del Paine, I wanted to share our food and gear list. All items are easily available in the chain supermarket called Unimarc. Since the W trek is a completely independent trek, you are responsible for carrying everything in and cooking for yourself.

Food list for W-trek, patagonia:

  1. Candy
  2. Trail Mix
  3. Dried Fruit
  4. Spicy peanuts
  5. Oat cereal bars
  6. Cereal mix oat cookies
  7. Costa muesli cookies
  8. Energy bars from Peru – found vegan energy bars in Lima!
  9. Soya cookies
  10. Dark chocolate
  11. Maggi stock cubes – checked ingredient list multiple times
  12. Soup packets
  13. Dried noodles
  14. Rice primavera instant food
  15. Tea bags
  16. Hot chocolate – 1 bar
  17. Hot breakfast drink pack from Cuzco containing local grains – excellent buy!
  18. Raisins
  19. Oats
  20. Jam (sold in blocks)
  21. Instant juice packets. Mix water to make juice.

Clothes list for one person, male or female

  1. Quick dry pant, 1
  2. T-shirt for hiking, 1
  3. Fleece pant for sleeping, 1
  4. Synthetic base layer shirt, 1
  5. Synthetic base layer pant, 1 – available at REI
  6. Rain pant
  7. Rain jacket
  8. Fleece shirt
  9. One extra t-shirt – optional
  10. Innerwear – as required

Gear:

  • Tent
  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping pad
  • Stove
  • One pot for cooking. Utensils. Plastic cups for drinking hot/cold.
  • Gas canisters
  • Matches

Other very helpful items to have:

  • Large plastic bag to cover the tent fly as it gets wet in the rain
  • Hooks/carabiners outside the pack to strap things
  • Camp slippers
  • Fingerless gloves
  • Minimum toiletries
  • Spare camera battery
  • Candy is great to carry handy
  • Small empty water bottle. The water in TDP is amazingly tasty and refreshes immediately, so no need to carry water.
  • No need for plates – can eat from pot directly.
  • Many plastic bags for rain proofing
  • Hiking poles
  • At least one pair of quick dry clothes
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W Trek in Torres Del Paine, Patagonia for an inexperienced hiker

To my utter chagrin (and inspiration), I only encounter super fit hikers where ever I go. Why is that? I am the slowest hiker on the trail and never the fittest, so the timings other people quote never applies to me. So here is a very slow and relaxed hikers guide to the W trek in Torres Del Paine National Park, Patagonia, Chile. I also drew a map showing what’s what. It felt great to be able to complete the trek and the next few posts will be about how to accomplish this.

Day 1 – Puerto Natales

  • The bus from Puerto Natales picked us up at our hostel in the morning (I think 8 AM) and drove us to the national park entrance, where we paid our entrance fees of 15000 chilean pesos/person. The bus ticket from Austral Glacier cost 12000 chilean pesos/person.
  • Continued on the same bus to the Catamaran @ 12000/person to Refugio Paine Grande
  • Hiked from 12.30 PM to 6.40 PM
  • Arrived at Refugio Gray around 5 PM
  • Camped at Las Guardas
  • Rained all night!
  • Be the last to enter so that you can get to your backpack first.
  • Pay catamaran fees on the boat itself. 

Day 2 – Las Guardas campsite

  • Broke camp very late. Very rainy and wet
  • 1 hour walk back to Refugio Gray
  • 4.25 hours to Paine Grande
  • 2.5 hours to Italiano
  • 7.5 to 8 hours of hiking in the entire day
  • Wet in the morning, sunny in the afternoon
  • No turn-back in Italiano if you arrive late. Free campsite, but clean and pretty.

Day 3 – Valle Del Frances

  • Swami hiked up to the 2nd mirador (~5 hours)
  • Niru hiked up to 1st mirador (~2.5 hours)
  • Left campsite at 4 pm.
  • Arrived at Cuernos at 6.45 PM.
  • Rainy, sunny, windy!!

Day 4: Cuernos campsite and view of the Cuernos

  • Longest day of hiking!
  • 10.15 AM – started from Cuernos campsite
  • 2 PM – Arrived at shortcut to Chileno refugio (after one large uphill climb and a downhill. Lot of flat walking after the shortcut, followed by steady uphill)
  • 5.00 PM – arrived at Chileno campsite
  • 6.45 PM – arrived at Torres campsite (mostly uphill)
  • Camped @ Torres campsite

Day 5: Torres Campsite

  • Woke up 4.40 AM to view sunrise at Las Torres, the parks most popular view point.
  • Started walk at 5.45 AM (did a small bit of packing)
  • Reached las torres at 6.50 AM
  • very cloudy and very uphill; could not see the torres at all; very disappointed
  • Returned to campsite, packed and left at 9.15 AM
  • Reached Chileno at 10.15 AM
  • Arrived at W trail entrance @ 12 PM
  • Bus to Puerto Natales at 2.30 PM