French Valley hike

Tackle enchanting trails to the Valle del Francés in Southern Patagonia

The essence of the French Valley hike

Valle del Francés or French Valley, is what many people consider the best section of Chile’s Patagonia “W” circuit. The “W” circuit references the formation of the letter “W” when you join the trails that access three iconic stops: the Base of the Towers, the French Valley, and the Grey Glaciers.

Hiking enthusiasts will revel in this 5-day trek, which explores most of the Torres del Paine National Park, including the Valle del Francés, situated in a natural amphitheatre.

You will climb steep moraines and may witness ice breaking off the Francés Glacier. A little further up, imposing peaks and immense granite rock faces come into view, while providing a 360-degree view of the heart of the Paine massif.

This is a lengthy adventure, and requires that you to take a catamaran ride across Lake Pehoé. Rumbling in the distance is the sound of small avalanches and ice calving from the glaciers. Your sojourn to the valley to reach the hanging Francés Glacier is enchanting.

It is important to note that the weather plays a big role while trekking the Valle del Frances, as mist can make it difficult to see the glacier and may hide the Cerro Paine Grande, making a hike further into the Valley to Campamento Britanico uneventful.

The beauty of the area is ever-present along this hike and you will be able stop off at the Salto Grande Waterfall. The fairy-tale setting of the waterfall is spell-binding as the water drops 50 feet through a narrow chute from the blue waters of Lake Nordenskjöld into what eventually turns into Lago Pehoé.

ADD THIS TO YOUR TOUR

Only available as part of a planned itinerary

Channel your inner travel addict

You’re just 5 easy (and fun) steps away from creating your ideal Travel Dream Board.

Step 1: Select which part of the planet you wish to explore

Step 2: Clarify what kind of traveller you are

Step 3: Tick off those grand bucket list experiences that will fire your imagination

Step 4: Log in to create and add to your Dream Board

Step 5: Share & start dreaming

 

Leaving our world a better place
for years