Torres del Paine (W: Los Cuernos), Chile Nov. 28, 2011

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Torres del Paine (W: Los Cuernos), Chile Nov. 28, 2011

Postby Tony Crocker » Mon Jan 02, 2012 4:20 pm

Los Cuernos is the nicest refugio to stay after a long day in the French Valley because of this hot tub by the cabanas and a waterfall.
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From the hot tub the view over the lake is good too.
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Not to mention the mountains behind
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Los Cuernos has dorm rooms like the other refugios but we opted for this cabana.
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The cabana is secluded but still rustic with no heat and bath down the stairs outside to a separate building.

View from the cabana leaving the next morning
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Zoom of Cuerno Este and waterfall above the cabana
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Overview of Los Cuernos cabanas from the trail leaving camp
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Sunny break last view of Cuerno Este
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This was the easiest day, 10AM to 4PM, 9 miles and about 1,500 feet of climbing from Los Cuernos to Refugio Chileno. Topo map included again; click on it and use the magnifying glass to see full resolution.
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Mountains to the north as we hike east
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The south side of Lago Nordenskjold has smoother hills with curved rock layers
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There were quite a few stream crossings. Some were rocky.
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Some were muddy as the trail crossed a meadow.
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The shortcut trail to Chileno climbs out of the meadow. Soon we overlook Rio Paine flowing into the east end of Lago Nordenskjold.
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The shortcut joins the main trail from Hosteria Las Torres.
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Within 10 minutes we're at the high point, looking up Rio Ascencio to Refugio Chileno and mountains beyond.
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This area had the strongest steady winds of 30+ of our time on the W, but we were only up there 10 minutes or so.

Zoom of the glacial cirque at distance shows a fracture line on the left side.
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A group on horses is coming out of Chileno.
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Bridge and Refugio Chileno
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Hiking boots and bulletin board at Chileno
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This is the most remote location I've seen the MRG sticker.

There's a thin waterfall coming down the hillside next to Refugio Chileno.
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The tops of the namesake Paine Towers are visible from Chileno. Temporary clearing late in the day.
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Chileno has dorm rooms (with sleeping bags as not heated) plus campsites. Chileno and Cuernos are operated by Fantastico Sur http://www.fslodges.com/en.html . We thought their food was better than at Paine Grande, which along with Refugio Grey is operated by Vertice http://www.verticepatagonia.com/ .
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Ski Records
Season length: 21 months, Nov. 29, 2010 - July 2, 2012
Days in one year: 80 from Nov. 29, 2010 - Nov. 17, 2011
Season vertical: 1,610K in 2016-17
Season powder: 291K in 2011-12
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Tony Crocker
 
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Location: Avatar: Charlotte Bay, Antarctica 2011
Location: Glendale, California

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