The majestic Mount Fitz Roy is a famous landmark in Argentina’s side of Patagonia. If you’re planning to see the spectacular mountain up close the hike to Laguna de los Tres is your best bet.
The trail goes along some stunning scenery (including Laguna Capri) before reaching a challenging final climb towards the base camp of Mt Fitz Roy. It is a medium difficulty day trek that takes around 8 hours to complete (round trip). Weather is crucial when you plan to do any trek close to El Chalten. We were there in November, supposedly good time of the year (October to May is the best season) but it was still cloudy and raining on the other days that we were in town.
El Chalten to Laguna Capri
It was a clear day when we decided to do the hike. The track started at the very end of the town of El Chalten; we followed the sign that said Laguna Capri – Laguna de los Tres. Most parts of the trail were shaded and the views were beautiful along the way. For the first hour, the hike slowly went up until we reached the view point of the Del Salto stream. From there, the trail went further into the forest with lots of flat bits until we reached Laguna Capri, a beautiful lake with panoramic views of Mount Fitz Roy from afar. We stopped for awhile to appreciate the beautiful scenery before continuing towards Rio Blanco. There is also a free campsite at Laguna Capri.
Laguna Capri to Rio Blanco
The next part of the trail has a lot of open fields and stunning views of Mt Fitz Roy. Along the way, we even saw the Piedras Blancas Glacier (“white stone” glacier). There is less shade in the next few hours but the sun was not very hot when we were there. There were a lot of good areas for photos and we took our time to capture the scenery. The Poincenot camp and Rio Blanco camp sites are located near Rio Blanco.
Read More: Torres del Paine W Trek: One of the Best Treks in Patagonia (similar scenery in Chile’s side of Patagonia)
Rio Blanco to Laguna de los Tres
After crossing the bridge over Rio Blanco, it was the final stretch and most difficult part of the trail. From here the trail continues in ascent approximately 400m. The trail was steep and the open terrain was very stony. It was a miserable walk as we faced strong winds on the way up. (Make sure to bring enough warm clothes.) I took a few breaks and tried to keep a small gap between me and Jon. After about an hour, we saw Mount Fitz Roy slightly shrouded in clouds. It was beautiful but still a bit more till we were at the view point.
Two steps forward, one step back. The Lagunas de los Tres was just behind a small stony hill. The hike up was scary! There was no trail and the hike was steep over loose stones. It took a fee minutes to climb and finally, there it was – Laguna de los Tres.
Mount Fitz Roy from Laguna de los Tres
The view at the top was spectacular! From the hill we got a close-up view of Mount Fitz Roy and its surrounding peaks. Below them was a white frozen lake, Laguna de los Tres. It is also possible to go down towards the lagoon or hike to the other hill overlooking the nearby glacier. We chose to stay on top of the hill and enjoy the views while we had lunch. We waited for the clouds to clear completely but they never quite revealed the top of the mountain.
Parque National de los Glaciares
Laguna de Los Tres and Mt Fitz Roy are parts of the Parque National de los Glaciares in El Chalten, Argentina. There is no entrance fee for the treks in this area (El Chalten) of the national park.
Other Treks in Parque National de los Glaciares
There are a few of other treks in Parque National de los Glaciares. We were headed for Laguna Torre to see Cerro Torre the next day but the weather wasn’t good so I had to turn back. Jon went ahead but soon had to turn back as well because the view was nowhere in sight – Cerro Torre was covered in clouds.
Map of Laguna de los Tres Hike and Other Hikes from El Chalten
A map of the different hikes near El Chalten by the Visitor Information Centre of the Parque National de los Glaciares. You can also check the website of El Chalten for information.
Have you been done the Laguna de los Tres Hike towards Mt Fitz Roy? Have you done any other treks in Patagonia?