Rafting in Patagonia

20/10/2015

The Argentinian Patagonia is the home to a natural environment in which majestic glaciers, crystal clear lakes, vast forest and monumental Andean mountains are plentiful.

This region, in which the richness of its flora and fauna predominates, is visited by thousands of tourists year after year, who arrive in the search for an out-of-the-ordinary experience, new sensations and the opportunity to get in touch with nature.

Many of the travelers visiting this area of the Argentinian south do so in search of a chance to practice adventure and extreme sports, among which water sports stand out due to the abundance of raging rivers resulting of the melting of major pieces of ice. And, from this group, rafting stands out, a sport in which teamwork, synchronization and the launching itself allow the raft to overcome any inconvenience that may arise during the zigzagging path, generating a high level of adrenaline to its occupants when trying to stay afloat and reach its destination.

Before starting this exciting activity, people interested must reach the home base, located in the town of El Chaltén. Once there, visitors will be given a warm welcome and will also receive information regarding the geographic location and how the activity will take place.

Those interested in doing this excursion, which has the area of El Chaltén as an epicenter, will have the "Los Glaciares" National Park at their disposal and will be at the foot of the famous Fitz Roy mountain. Therefore, throughout the journey, visitors will be able to see and enjoy each and every characteristic landscape in the area as well as contemplate its lakes and glaciers. One of the most interesting rafting descents takes place at 6kms from the village, in the Las Vueltas River, which has a whitish color due to the glacial origin of its effluents, and which can turn brown as a result of the rain.

Every passenger will be given the technical equipment required to ensure the safety and comfort of the experience. This equipment consists of a life jacket, a helmet, a thermal suit and a pair of neoprene boots. After passengers are equipped, they will be transferred to an area near the river, where they will receive a technical talk on the activity as well as one regarding safety, to later be able to embark and begin this exciting adventure.

Currently, two products are being offered to the public: Rafting El Chaltén and Full Day Rafting. The journey is divided into 3 stages, each of different complexity and intensity. During the first 4 km, travellers will learn about the functioning of the raft, the river and will perfect our paddling techniques in order to later enter the second stage, called El Cañadón, in which the real adventure will start. This stage is characterized for the succession of sinuous rapids, with churning waters and waves that can reach one meter high, and in which the maximum speed of the itinerary is reached. El Cañadón also tests the skills of the crew, who will feel the highest levels of adrenaline of this journey. In the last stretch, adventurers will find about 2 kilometers of calm waters, where they will be able to relax and enjoy the flora and fauna around them. Finally, visitors will take the vehicle that will take them back to the base in El Chaltén.

Practicing this type of sports in this region allows people to transform exercises in adventure, to get out of their comfort zone, to know and overcome their limits, to disconnect from civilization and enter a natural ecosystem, contemplating the beauty of the landscapes, which offer people the mountains, lakes and woods, as well as its corresponding fauna, characteristic of Patagonia.

Calafate Mountain Park