Glacier Camping- a horseback riding trek in Chile

Glacier Camping Ride

Ride Overview

This is an adventurous horseback riding trek in Chile. Riders experience an ever-changing natural beauty as they venture off the main hiking trails and into the heart of the vast and varied landscape of the Torres del Paine National Park.  The ‘Torres’, great granite towers and the mountains of the Paine massif dominate the park.  Surrounding the massif is open rolling country with pockets of forests with the scarce “Lenga” and “Nires” trees, rivers, lagoons, waterfalls and incredible massifs or “Horns”, which reach 10,000 feet at their highest point.  Great glaciers flow down from the southern Patagonian ice cap into the lakes of the park.

The Glacier Camping Ride includes a boat trip up the Last Hope Sound.  The days of the trek are spent exploring this incredible park on horseback, from Puerto Natales in the south then crossing the Torres del Paine National Park further north and the continuing southwards back towards Puerto Natales. There will be plenty of time in the mornings or late afternoons for short hikes, photography or to just relax and enjoy the solitude of this remote wilderness.

Accommodations & Food

The first night of the ride is spent in a comfortable hostel in Puerto Natales. Each night on the trek is spent camping. Some sites have showers and toilets and some are 'wild camping' where washing is in rivers and the toilet is 'naturelle'. Showers are available every couple of days. In the event of particularly bad weather, basic accommodations in the park are used.

All of the tents used on the ride are three-man size with two guests sharing, giving ample space for riders and luggage. They are newer North Face-type tents and are very strong to withstand the famous Patagonian winds. Guests typically set up their own tents.

On arrival during late afternoon at the campsites, wine and canapes are served giving riders ample time to relax while the evening meal is prepared. A dining tent for eating and cooking provides shelter during meal times or riders can opt to dine beside the campfire. There is a varied dinner menu of fish, chicken, pasta, steak and lamb (which is a local staple), served with fresh salads and vegetables, accompanied by Chilean wine. Fruit and cheese are served for dessert.

Breakfast typically includes cold and hot cereals, toast, croissants, cheese, jams, marmalade, coffee, tea and juice. At times a cooked breakfast of bacon, scrambled eggs or omelets is served. Packed lunches include sandwiches with fillings such as tuna, cheese, peanut butter, avocados, ham and vegetables, along with fresh fruits and other snacks. Vegetarians can be accommodated with advance notice.

Ride & Horse Details

  • Overview:
    The horses are Criollo crosses and vary in size with the majority being between 14 - 15.2 hands, they are strong, fit and willing to move out when asked. Horses are changed half way through the trip to ensure that they are fresh. Riders are not responsible for grooming or tacking, as there are Chilean horsemen (Baqueanos) that care for the horses on the ride. The tack is Chilean. This is similar to western tack with comfortable suede/sheepskin lined saddles. Rawhide straps are used as girths giving more security than traditional string girths. The style of riding is western and the horses respond to neck reining. Most of the horses are ridden in simple snaffles.
  • Horse Breeds:
    Criollo crosses
  • Trip Pace:
  • Tack:
  • Weight limit:
    210 lbs

Meeting Point

Puerto Natales

With first-hand knowledge of the exciting tours we offer, the ride consultants at Equitours look forward to answering any questions you might have about this ride. We want to help make sure that you select the trip of your dreams. Please call or email and get ready to pack your bags for a wonderful adventure!

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