Hiking the Iconic Fitz Roy Trail

Mount Fitz Roy is one of Patagonia’s classic images.  Once you’ve seen this staggeringly beautiful mountain, the memory of it will stay with you always.  It is THAT beautiful.  I’d done zero research prior to hiking Fitz Roy, & though I’d done many hikes by this point: I was still blown away.  You have views for the ENTIRE hike ~ & I’ll tell you later how to do a different route than the typical tourist, that allows you to see the backside of Fitz Roy, including a stunning glacier.  So without further ado, let’s go hiking the iconic Fitz Roy Trail in El Chalten

Note that the hike to Mount Fitz Roy is also known as the hike to “Laguna de los Tres,” which is the name of the crystal-clear turquoise lake that sits right at the base of Fitz Roy (pictured above). 

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Hiking the Iconic Fitz Roy Trail in El Chalten, Girl Who Travels the World

You’ll enjoy magnificent views the entire way, while hiking the iconic Fitz Roy Trail in El Chalten.

Map of El Chalten & Fitz Roy

El Chalten

Mount Fitz Roy

Fitz Roy Trailhead

Hosteria Pilar (Alternate Start)

Fitz Roy Hiking Info

  • Mount Fitz Roy Trailhead: I’ve marked the Fitz Roy trailhead on the map above.  But it’s easy to find ~ simply walk down the main avenue in town, & it basically dead-ends at the trailhead. 
  • Alternate Starting Point: Ask your hotel for a shuttle to “Hosteria Pilar.”  This is how I hiked Fitz Roy ~ & it makes for a more interesting day (with FAR less people!).  You’ll hike up the back side of Fitz Roy, & see the beautiful Piedra Blancas Glacier.  Basically, you’ll hike in a big circle, with different views all day long ~ instead of doing the traditional out-and-back.  It’s also a slightly easier ascent, which gives you more energy for the daunting last kilometer of the hike!
  • Trail Distance: 22-26 kilometers (depending where you start) 
  • How Long it Takes to Hike: 6-10 hours (it took me exactly 6 hours, starting at Hosteria Pilar, at a fast pace)
  • How Long it Takes to Hike the Final Kilometer: 48 minutes minimum!  (I timed it!)  This is by far the hardest part of the trail: it’s steep, wet, & crowded with people.  It’s extremely challenging, & may be an issue for people with knee problems.  Nearly everyone I passed on the trail (90%) were using walking sticks.
  • Free Campgrounds on Fitz Roy Trail:  1) Campamento Poincenot (closest to top, near final kilometer), & 2) Campamento Capri (4 km from the trail head, on shore of Laguna Capri).  For more info, click here.
  • How is Wi-Fi in El Chalten?  In a word: TERRIBLE!!!  By far, this is the worst Wi-Fi I experienced anywhere in Argentina ~ even at nice hotels!  SO SLOW.
  • Where to Stay in El Chalten:  The nicest hotels to stay at in El Chalten are Chalten Suites Hotel, Hotel Destino Sur (very close to trail head), & Don los Cerros Boutique Hotel & Spa.  Mediocre accommodations in El Chalten tend to be over-priced & mediocre ~ so my advice is to go either low-end or high-end here.  There are plenty of great hostels in El Chalten. Another option is to actually stay at Hosteria Pilar, which is a hotel itself, & will put you right at the start of the trail.

Hiking the Iconic Fitz Roy Trail

And that's a wrap on hiking the iconic Fitz Roy Trail in El Chalten!  Did you hike this trail when you were in Patagonia, or do you have questions for a future trip??  Just let me know in the comments below!

xoxo Noelia

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