Outdoor Action and Princeton Journeys team up again—this time to tackle the Paine Circuit and the famous "W" route, February 8-21, 2016.
Princeton Journeys is proud to partner with Outdoor Action to offer active travelers the chance to explore on foot the scenic wonderland of Chile's Torres del Paine National Park along with Rick Curtis '79, Director of the Outdoor Action Program, on a trip operated by World Wide Trekking.
Chile's Torres del Paine National Park is a scenic wonderland without parallel — likened by many to the combined splendor of Yosemite and the Grand Tetons — a place to which all serious mountain-lovers must make a pilgrimage at least once in their lifetime. This trek is a full circuit of the Paine massif, including the famous "W" route, and takes you through the kind of rarely traveled terrain you’d expect to find at the ends of the earth.
Accompanied by top local guides, all with extensive mountaineering backgrounds, you'll hike deep into the remote wilderness of southern Chile. Here, glaciers of millennia past have receded from the granite rock of the Cordillera Paine, leaving a cluster of craggy peaks rising 8,000 feet above the surrounding grasslands. The jaw-dropping vistas of monolithic rock spires and snow-capped mountains, the huge expanse of the Patagonia Ice Field, the tranquil azure lakes and the golden plains bright with wildflowers make this, beyond a doubt, one of the most unforgettable treks you’ll ever take.
The Paine Circuit is one of the classic treks in the world and a great trek for the experienced hiker. Travelers should expect 6-10 hours of hiking a day for eight days, totaling 70 miles. The altitude is moderate — never more than 4,000 feet above sea level — but the trails themselves are challenging with lots of up and down, rocky terrain, some stream crossings and the chance for slippery and muddy conditions.
About the Study Leader
Rick Curtis '79 has been the Director of the Outdoor Action Program at Princeton for the past thirty-two years. During that time the program has grown significantly with over 800 freshmen and 200 student trip leaders participating in the annual Frosh Trip outdoor orientation program. Rick is an experienced backpacker, backcountry skier and kayaker and is author of The Backpacker's Field Manual, a best-selling book on hiking and backpacking. Rick has led a number of Outdoor Action alumni trips over the past 25 years. He participated in the successful 2012 collaboration between OA and Princeton Journeys that trekked the Annapurna Sanctuary up to 13,800 feet.