Location: 45 km south of Punta Arenas, Chile
Length: ~70-80 km (bus or thumb)
Duration: 4-5 days
Special Requirements: Take a tides chart for timing your crossings of the last two rivers
Potable water: Yes, but watch tides, as rivers back up with saltwater during high-tide
Camping: Plenty of sites along the Trail, though some are kind of dirty with human trash and waste
Trail Etiquette #2: When you are adventuring through the Naturaleza, please be sure to pack out your own trash! I know burning it in the fire might get rid of it too, but plastics and cans are a poor choice to burn, as they release truly toxic chemicals into the environment. Remember to pack out, what you pack in, and leave it better than you found it!
There are two frequently used ways to get to the start of the hike.
Backstory & Reasons For Going
Waiting in the hostel for my job in Torres Del Paine to start, I met a group of young travellers at the “Independencia”. They wanted to do a hike known as Cabo Froward. A 5 day trek around the southernmost mountains of the South American continent. My ears perked up. Interested, and restless, I was itching to go on another adventure. In the end, the three attractive females and only one guy odds sent me on the reckless journey, leading to the delay of me starting my volunteer work in the park. I finally committed to the group the night before the trek, as I still holding out for an email from the my new boss--no such luck! So I headed back the wilderness--well worth it!
The views of the Magellan's with glaciers lying top island mountain chains across the ocean and inspiring a desire for further exploration. While the incredible stony beaches fading from clarity at the fart point of its many bays and beaches seemed infinite. Whale tail’s and many dolphin fins became happy distractions. I really enjoyed the fallen trees blocking parts of the path and coastline, and the spine-like layers of rock jutting from the from the ocean with spaces to jump, crawl, and bound between really brought out my inner parkour. Two of the three river crossings provided a touch of cold excitement and got some girls half naked at the same time--nice perks! In a few places, ropes hung on steep muddy cliffsides with clawed, muddy marks streaking the cliff face. It ended with a mix of soggy/muddy hillside and worn wooden framed steps, and several white anchored ladders at the summit of the Cabo. The final hill also had some creepy poles with framed faces of Jesus along the trail--maybe he climbed it first or something--I didn’t care to find out.
The return home came much faster than the way there, and before we knew it, the trail was done, the pisco was gone, the rivers crossed and we hitched a ride with some really friendly locals. They were kind enough to introduce us to the local Calafate Berry that grows wild in these parts. They are typically kind of bitter, but make great marmalades!