Cerro Torre Argentina: Tips For Hikers and Climbers!
Cerro Torre is a part of the Southern Patagonian Ice Field range in South America, part of the Los Glacieries National Park, in the south of the country of Argentina. Along with her sister mountain, Mount Fitz Roy, Cerro Torre make for spectacular landmarks in Argentina, with their tell-tale peaks shooting into the sky.
Cerro Torre, along with Torre Egger, Punta Herron and Cerro Standhardt make up the four mountain chain that lies to the west of the famous Mount Fitz Roy. Like the other towering peaks around it, the mountain itself is very hard to climb and is considered one of the most difficult mountains in the world. The top of Cerro Torre, some 3100 meters up is actually a mushroom cap of white ice called rime ice that occurs when water droplets in fog freeze. Add to this the insane weather that is forever tormenting the mountain and you can see why climbing her is best left to only the most experienced climbers of the world.
As far as Argentina tourist attractions go the Los Glacieries National Park and her many majestic peaks and ice fields rate among the top draws in the south of the country. People come from all over to visit the area, to climb or to trek among the beautiful scenery. Patagonia tours can be had from the town of El Chalten, fast becoming the Argentinian capital of trekking, with many trailheads starting just outside of town.
In order to climb Cerro Torre, you must register and get permits and of course make sure you have all of the necessary equipment in your possession. There are two routes taken to the summit; the south east ridge that is full of bolts left there from previous attempts or the more natural and unblemished west face route. While the summit may be unattainable because of the ice, several people per year brave the fierce weather, incredible winds and skyrocketing sheer face and give climbing this massif a try. The climbs may last between 3-8 days or you could get lucky and have a miraculous break in the weather that would allow a 1 or 2 day ascent.
An easier way to see the beauty up close is by trekking. Hike the 22km trail from El Chalten on a well-marked trail and you will pass areas of unbelievable scenery including glacial streams and of course the majestic peaks. Visiting this park no matter the reason is a remarkable thing to do in Argentina and will leave you with memories to last a lifetime.
Cerro Torre and her sister peaks make for a breathtaking array of nature at its finest whether you want to see her from a distance or try the climb to the icy summit. If a trip to southern Argentina is imminent, you owe yourself a visit to this magical place.