The most popular of Torres del Paine’s trekking routes is the Base Torres trail. And for good reason. After traversing through plunging valleys and rocky slopes, adventurers are rewarded with a breathtaking view of the park’s centerpiece – the “Towers of Paine. These three iconic granite spires tower high above a turquoise lagoon at the crest of the trail.
During high season, the Base Torres trail can receive 1,000 hikers in a single day. This heavy foot traffic, causes significant wear and tear on the trail. As a result, the Base Torres trail is now severely eroded. Other factors, including the harsh climate, steep grades, and poor trail alignment only exacerbate these impacts.
These degraded trail conditions not only pose a safety concern for hikers, they also impact the park’s sensitive ecosystems. Improving the Base Torres trail is an urgent priority requiring a large-scale, public-private effort. To address this challenge, the Torres del Paine Legacy Fund is teaming up with the Chilean National Forest Corporation (CONAF) and AMA Torres del Paine to implement a collaborative conservation project titled “Tu Mejor Huella para el Paine.”
This project will restore the Base Torres trail system. Tread will be repaired and constructed following sustainable design principles. Creating a sustainable trail system will reduce erosion, lessen environmental impacts, and minimize the need for continual maintenance.
Improved trail conditions will lead to a safer, more enjoyable visitor experience. At the same time, the rejuvenated trail will connect people with nature in an engaging and responsible way. Trail stewardship is key to protecting the long-term health of our national parks, particularly one as popular as Torres del Paine.
The Torres del Paine Legacy Fund
The Torres del Paine Legacy Fund is a travel philanthropy fund established by Sustainable Travel International in partnership with the Fink Family Foundation that is ensuring a more sustainable future for Chilean Patagonia.
Leave behind your best footprint for Torres del Paine! Join us in preserving this iconic, yet fragile destination by donating your square meter today.
Engaging Students in Reforestation
Involving local schools in restoring Torres del Paine National Park’s native ecosystem after damage caused by several man-made forest fires.
Improving Recycling Infrastructure
Installing and supporting the expansion of the first recycling system in Puerto Natales, the gateway community to Torres del Paine National Park.