Laguna de los Tres Hike
For those seeking an outdoor experience in the heart of Patagonia, the Trekking to Laguna de los Tres near El Chalten is a must-visit location. This walk offers a totally unique experience with its stunning landscapes, varied fauna, and interesting trails.
Laguna de los Tres is located at the base of Mt. Fitz Roy (also called “Chaltén” Mount, which would be “smoking mountain” in Tehuelche language – and its height is about 3405 meters above the sea level).
El Chaltén, starting point
El Chalten, a fairytale village in the center of Santa Cruz province, serves as the trail’s starting and ending point. Additionally, to avoid going back and forth through the same trail, you can start your hike in the area of Hostería El Pilar, which would allow you to get spectacular views to the Piedras Blancas Glacier (plus avoid doing the same way twice). To reach Hostería El Pilar you need to take a taxi (about 20 minutes).
You will hike through some of the most stunning scenery in the world after leaving this location. You will travel through dense nothofagus forests, cross rushing streams, and take in expansive views of the nearby peaks and glaciers.
You’ll may be able to come across a variety of species as you climb the mountain, including guanacos, condors, and even the occasional puma and huemul deer (southern Patagonian deer). Additionally, you’ll be treated to breathtaking vistas of Patagonia’s most famous mountains, Fitz Roy and Cerro Torre (for this one you would have to do another hike, which you can see here: Cerro Torre hike).
How long is the Laguna de los Tres hike?
In total, the activity takes about 8-10 hours (about 25 km return), with a moderated difficulty except the last lap, which is a 1 hour hike up a 45° slope. The trail is not very high in altitude (maximum of approx. 1200 meters above the sea level), which is a plus for those that suffer from altitude sickness.
This can be self-guided, but if you want to make the best out of your visit, a professional guide is advised.
After hiking up the mentioned slope, you arrive at the Laguna de los Tres, a magnificent alpine lake encircled by soaring peaks and glaciers. Furthermore, next to Laguna de los Tres there is a cliff that offers a spectacular panoramic view of the Sucia lagoon.
The name Laguna de los 3 (lagoon of the three), comes from three of the mounts that surround it: Fitz Roy, Poincenot, and Torre.
It’s also important to highlight that in between Laguna de los Tres and El Chaltén, you can pass by Laguna Capri, a picturesque lagoon surrounded by nothofagus trees (Lengas and Cohigues). This is about 2 hours from the village, where you can take a deserve rest while you enjoy the views.
The walk to Laguna de los Tres is normally well marked and well-maintained, making it accessible to a variety of people despite its isolated position. It’s crucial to remember that even though this hike doesn’t require specific technical conditions (most of the people with good phisycal conditions can do it), you need to be able to walk for several hours.
Hiking tours in El Chaltén and Patagonia
We’re an Argentinian based travel company that offers custom trips in Argentina and Chile, including the hike to Laguna de los Tres.
As a kick off, we invite to check our following pages:
Andean Crossing from Bariloche to Puerto Varas
We also invite you to explore the following posts:
El Chalten Hikes (Guide)
El Chaltén travel guide