Noticias

Torres del Paine: A dreamlike autumn destination

  • Reserva Cerro Paine provides a new experience for visitors in Autumn, when its landscape transforms into a veil of orange tones. During March and April, enjoy the magic of Torres del Paine National Park’s trails and viewpoints, horseback ride, trek, and meet Patagonian baqueanos.

With these marvelous Autumn changes, visitors can enjoy different experiences and activities that are more suited to colder temperatures.

Steve Johnson’s, Lead Outdoor Guide of Hotel Las Torres, favorite season in Reserva Cerro Paine is Autumn, because it is when the splendor of nature, complimented by the cold and the rain, intensifies, as well as increases the likelihood of observing Pumas, leaving visitors with magical feelings for which Patagonia is famous.

During these months, the wind is more moderate, and the W Trek is open until the end of April to make up for the closure of the O Circuit. Some birds migrate with the change of season, and the vegetation changes its appearance to hues of orange for visitors to admire. The beauty of the landscape creates a perfect panorama for hikers and photographers. Activities, such as mountain biking, horseback riding, and trekking, are part of the experience, as well as other attractions, such as tasting a traditional Magellanic lamb roast, meeting a community of Patagonian baqueanos, and visiting a pesebrera (barn).

Johnson recommends trip planning and exploring options for accommodation e.g. a refuge, a hotel, or a campsite ahead of time. This includes knowing trails’ opening and closing times, evaluating their levels of difficulty, and preparing food that can be consumed without a fire or a stove. “Although park rangers monitor activity in the park, accidents can always happen, so it is important for visitors to arrive well prepared with extra food, specific entry and exit dates, and appropriate equipment for cold, rain, and wind, including at least one extra coat per person, hiking poles, and shoes that are worn-in.”

Alejandra Covacevich, Reserva Cerro Paine’s Product and Experience Manager, recommends observing at least one sunrise in Torres del Paine as part of a firsthand experience of the natural wonders that this corner of the world has to offer. Make sure to follow the park rangers’ instructions, stay on the trails, respect the flora and fauna, and adhere to trail schedules. “Visitors are invited to discover Patagonia’s nature and culture and should understand that Torres del Paine has more to offer than just trekking. It is also a destination for mountain biking, horseback riding, walking on glacier ice, rock climbing, and kayaking. With the help of guides, it is possible to do many of these activities within the reserve, which could even include completing the 5-day W Trek or the 8-day O Circuit.”

Low temperatures and rain are an obstacle for activities such as rock climbing; however, there is a variety of other traditional Magellanic activities available. It is advisable for visitors to depart Puerto Natales by bus at 7:00 am or noon to have enough time to enjoy guided afternoon excursions. The reserve opens from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm and is accessible via car, truck, and bike.

This amazing season opens the door to Winter Season, which starts on May and is only available for W Programs with the company of a guide. In this ocation Torres del Paine dressed their authentic mountains with pure white gowns, bright ice and a multicolor sky that leaves every visitor speechless.

Reserva Cerro Paine promotes reforestation plan with the support of civil and corporate volunteerism

  • The reserve prioritizes conservation of the area’s biology and cultural history spanning twenty-five years. Its mission, more than just sustainable tourism, is to inspire ambition in conservation, research, and environmental education.

More than six thousand lenga trees will be planted this year by the AMA Torres del Paine NGO in Reserva Cerro Paine, thanks to a tree nursery and a conservation campaign that hopes to impact civil society. The initiative constitutes the second chapter of a project to cultivate twenty thousand lengas for El Paine. It has mobilized local communities, including 700 schoolchildren from the Magallanes Region, to plant more than seventeen thousand lenga seedlings in Torres del Paine National Park.

The reforestation program calls for the participation of civil actors from schools, local communities, universities, and companies. It has the support of a team of park rangers that manage signage, trails (mainly the most visited trail, Base Torres, that registers up to 1,000 tourists daily in high season), entrance control, and closure of accesses.

 

“Control and territorial management can be considered the principle instruments of conservation. These instruments help prevent wildfires and permit effective information dispersion through data collection and environmental education to visitors and workers.” This year, there were twenty-five expert talks about flora and fauna, as well as cultural discussions on responsible coexistence with Pumas and compatibility with sustainable tourism in the region,” says Nelson Bahamonde, a biologist and the director of Research and Environmental Education at AMA Torres del Paine.

Bahamonde proudly states that the incipient efforts that began with the creation of AMA Torres del Paine in 2004 combine environmental and social lines of work, so that Reserva Cerro Paine can conserve its natural diversity for the next twenty-five years and more. Without the will and vision of the landowners, this would not have been possible. He points out, “The greatest of all of our achievements is that we converted the Estancia Cerro Paine into a private protected area and a natural and cultural reserve. It makes commitment to long-term conservation more tangible and safeguards the biodiversity of the area.”

 

The creation of the NGO is a milestone that changes the objective of managing territory, transcending the development of sustainable tourism corporations and prioritizing the compromise of biology and cultural conservation. It improves the reserve’s trails and the quality of eroded terrain through the campaigns “Your Best Footprint for Paine” and “Reforest by Sponsoring a Lenga,” which educate about the prevention of wildfires and the coexistence of flora and fauna, mainly with pumas. These are just a few examples of activities included in our master plan of conservation.

Reserva Cerro Paine seeks to promote the development of a conservationist culture, with actions directed towards school communities, universities, businesses, residents of Punta Arenas, Puerto Natales, Porvenir, scientific groups, scouts, and others that contribute to the care and recuperation of the environment. In the same way, AMA Torres del Paine has prioritized the reforestation of lands affected by wildfire through projects including the current lenga nursery and a lenga seed orchard.

The areas co-management (landowners and communities) benefit private conservation in the national park. According to experts, private conservation does not seek to complicate the ownership of private land. Rather, it is an ally that prompts landowners to care for nature through long-term plans and mobilizes communities to passively and actively contribute to conservation and monitor what goes on in the reserve.

Our reserve is also developing a biological portfolio with a register of the area’s flora and fauna, which will allow us to detect points-of-interest of biodiversity. According to Bahamonde, a leader of science and education investigation in Reserva Cerro Paine, “This register will be of great value for measuring Torres del Paine’s ecological conditions and advances in conservation, considering that Reserva Cerro Paine is part of the park. It is important to note that borders are artificial references of territory, because nature is without barriers.”

AMA Torres del Paine’s Reserva Cerro Paine Conservation Team integrates biologists, park rangers, tree farmers, tourism professionals, and specialists in territory, among others, to arrange the beginning of an ambitious and necessary plan.

WHY LENGAS?

Nelson points out that the forests of the area are mostly lenga, ñirre and coihue. Since lengas do not regrow after a fire, the reforestation plan prioritizes their conservation. “We want ecological restoration through planting tree farms. We hope that the lengas do not only have rapid growth, but that they also develop ecologically, so that we can diminish the need for chemical fertilizers and hormones, which can intervene in the ecosystem. We want to replicate the environment’s natural functions and only help a little rather than over-manipulate natural resources, which is ultimately negative for ourselves.”

The Participatory Management Plan commits socially through making agreements with primary and secondary schools and universities, creating educational and volunteer spaces, and forming connections between the reserve’s conservation and tourism workers, including conservation issues that may come up within the companies for which they work. With the help of a local school reforestation campaign that mobilized 700 students, AMA Torres del Paine planted approximately sixty thousand plants for forest recovery in Torres del Paine. These new trees are the most recent achievement in concretizing the reforestation of over seventeen thousand trees in Torres del Paine National Park from 2014 to 2017.

Human capital: academic training for tourism guides

  • In 2018, we created the Reserva Cerro Paine Training Academy with the goal of teaching tourism guides about regional history and patrimony, conservation, flora and fauna, glaciology, geology, and first aid. At the academy, many guides also became specialized in rock climbing, horseback riding, and mountain biking. Through these achievements, the commitment and the identity of our human resources was strengthened.

With the objective of improving visitors’ experiences, Reserva Cerro Paine Academy debuted in 2018 as a project that sought to strengthen the knowledge, skills, and technical capacity of tourism guides, teaching them a variety of topics, such as flora and fauna, history, geology, glaciology, and first aid. After the debut, workers and visitors were left with satisfactory and successful results.

Boris Gutiérrez, Deputy Manager of Organizational Development in Reserva Cerro Paine, highlighted the progress of the initial efforts and confirmed a year-long commitment to analyzing work done in the past and perfecting the content of the activities. The leader of the initiative emphasized the experience as “an innovation of high human valor that reinforces the identity of guides and the potency of the training.” The results of Reserva Cerro Paine’s efforts designated its human resources as an influencer for the region.

 

“We began by focusing on organizing and structuring the training, as well as forming a permanent academy that incorporates our service guidelines and strengthens our connection to the guides, season after season,” said Gutiérrez. Management supports this training model through updating information, procedures, and management plans, as well as promoting better standards and intervention protocols.

 

María José Marchant, Head of Excursion Center and experienced in tourism, lead the academy, planned a series of chats, and worked on methods to improve English language proficiency for all guides. This year, the Training Academy also established specialized objectives according to distinct areas of work.

 

“We are setting a milestone in the reserve’s history and evolution, and we will surely be a model for the tourism sector, forming workers that are skilled and knowledgeable about the history and biodiversity of Patagonia,” Gutiérrez concluded.

Each season, the reserve has 450 rotating workers throughout the year and a fixed staff of 100 people. The team is made up of professionals, technicians, and experts by trade.

 

For Alejandra Covacevich, Product and Experience Manager of Reserva Cerro Paine, the rush to train guides obliges us to improve our services, considering that visitor surveys show 90% satisfaction.

 

“We wanted to standardize our ascription and recognize guides that specialized in mountain biking, horseback riding, and climbing, since they add value to our services and deliver greater reliability to tourists,” he says.

Our workers’ sources of pride for the reserve are the link between the environment and the visitors’ experience. Covacevich explains that at the start of the program, guides are classified as juniors. After a year, they are proficient, and after another three years, advanced. Beyond three years, students typically receive opportunities to form valuable communities, collaborative networks, and coaching relationships between experts and beginners. “Our aim is for guides to perceive a tangible commitment to building long-term alliances and to install training benefits with a 360 degree reach, so that everyone wins,” he concludes.

 

The Reserva Cerro Paine Training Academy is an innovative project that undoubtedly sets a precedent in the region for highly qualified tourism guides.

Organic Orchard: We Now Use Compostable Bags

Since last year, the team at the Reserva Cerro Paine’s organic garden has stopped using plastic to wrap vegetables and have implemented a sustainable organic waste management system.

The initiative emerged as a way to maintain the quality and freshness of fruits and vegetables with no need to wrap them in plastic. It is led by the manager of the organic garden, Carolina Escobar and her team, Paloma Cavieres, Daniel Herbison and Susan Mckenzie, as well as volunteers.

Read More

Fundación Ayuwn (NGO) conquers the O circuit

With great success concludes a journey through the “O” circuit of Torres del Paine, which was made by members of the Ayüwn Foundation.

Can you imagine hiking the “O” circuit of Torres del Paine without being able to see or hear what’s going on around you, or simply with one of your senses diminished? Undoubtedly, it is a very different experience than the majority of the population is used to. A unique challenge that could be achieved by an enthusiastic group of six people with disabilities (visual, auditory and cognitive) with support and in the company of their volunteers.

Read More

Torres del Paine: A dreamlike autumn destination

  • Reserva Cerro Paine provides a new experience for visitors in Autumn, when its landscape transforms into a veil of orange tones. During March and April, enjoy the magic of Torres del Paine National Park’s trails and viewpoints, horseback ride, trek, and meet Patagonian baqueanos.

With these marvelous Autumn changes, visitors can enjoy different experiences and activities that are more suited to colder temperatures.

Steve Johnson’s, Lead Outdoor Guide of Hotel Las Torres, favorite season in Reserva Cerro Paine is Autumn, because it is when the splendor of nature, complimented by the cold and the rain, intensifies, as well as increases the likelihood of observing Pumas, leaving visitors with magical feelings for which Patagonia is famous.

During these months, the wind is more moderate, and the W Trek is open until the end of April to make up for the closure of the O Circuit. Some birds migrate with the change of season, and the vegetation changes its appearance to hues of orange for visitors to admire. The beauty of the landscape creates a perfect panorama for hikers and photographers. Activities, such as mountain biking, horseback riding, and trekking, are part of the experience, as well as other attractions, such as tasting a traditional Magellanic lamb roast, meeting a community of Patagonian baqueanos, and visiting a pesebrera (barn).

Johnson recommends trip planning and exploring options for accommodation e.g. a refuge, a hotel, or a campsite ahead of time. This includes knowing trails’ opening and closing times, evaluating their levels of difficulty, and preparing food that can be consumed without a fire or a stove. “Although park rangers monitor activity in the park, accidents can always happen, so it is important for visitors to arrive well prepared with extra food, specific entry and exit dates, and appropriate equipment for cold, rain, and wind, including at least one extra coat per person, hiking poles, and shoes that are worn-in.”

Alejandra Covacevich, Reserva Cerro Paine’s Product and Experience Manager, recommends observing at least one sunrise in Torres del Paine as part of a firsthand experience of the natural wonders that this corner of the world has to offer. Make sure to follow the park rangers’ instructions, stay on the trails, respect the flora and fauna, and adhere to trail schedules. “Visitors are invited to discover Patagonia’s nature and culture and should understand that Torres del Paine has more to offer than just trekking. It is also a destination for mountain biking, horseback riding, walking on glacier ice, rock climbing, and kayaking. With the help of guides, it is possible to do many of these activities within the reserve, which could even include completing the 5-day W Trek or the 8-day O Circuit.”

Low temperatures and rain are an obstacle for activities such as rock climbing; however, there is a variety of other traditional Magellanic activities available. It is advisable for visitors to depart Puerto Natales by bus at 7:00 am or noon to have enough time to enjoy guided afternoon excursions. The reserve opens from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm and is accessible via car, truck, and bike.

This amazing season opens the door to Winter Season, which starts on May and is only available for W Programs with the company of a guide. In this ocation Torres del Paine dressed their authentic mountains with pure white gowns, bright ice and a multicolor sky that leaves every visitor speechless.

Reserva Cerro Paine promotes reforestation plan with the support of civil and corporate volunteerism

  • The reserve prioritizes conservation of the area’s biology and cultural history spanning twenty-five years. Its mission, more than just sustainable tourism, is to inspire ambition in conservation, research, and environmental education.

More than six thousand lenga trees will be planted this year by the AMA Torres del Paine NGO in Reserva Cerro Paine, thanks to a tree nursery and a conservation campaign that hopes to impact civil society. The initiative constitutes the second chapter of a project to cultivate twenty thousand lengas for El Paine. It has mobilized local communities, including 700 schoolchildren from the Magallanes Region, to plant more than seventeen thousand lenga seedlings in Torres del Paine National Park.

The reforestation program calls for the participation of civil actors from schools, local communities, universities, and companies. It has the support of a team of park rangers that manage signage, trails (mainly the most visited trail, Base Torres, that registers up to 1,000 tourists daily in high season), entrance control, and closure of accesses.

 

“Control and territorial management can be considered the principle instruments of conservation. These instruments help prevent wildfires and permit effective information dispersion through data collection and environmental education to visitors and workers.” This year, there were twenty-five expert talks about flora and fauna, as well as cultural discussions on responsible coexistence with Pumas and compatibility with sustainable tourism in the region,” says Nelson Bahamonde, a biologist and the director of Research and Environmental Education at AMA Torres del Paine.

Bahamonde proudly states that the incipient efforts that began with the creation of AMA Torres del Paine in 2004 combine environmental and social lines of work, so that Reserva Cerro Paine can conserve its natural diversity for the next twenty-five years and more. Without the will and vision of the landowners, this would not have been possible. He points out, “The greatest of all of our achievements is that we converted the Estancia Cerro Paine into a private protected area and a natural and cultural reserve. It makes commitment to long-term conservation more tangible and safeguards the biodiversity of the area.”

 

The creation of the NGO is a milestone that changes the objective of managing territory, transcending the development of sustainable tourism corporations and prioritizing the compromise of biology and cultural conservation. It improves the reserve’s trails and the quality of eroded terrain through the campaigns “Your Best Footprint for Paine” and “Reforest by Sponsoring a Lenga,” which educate about the prevention of wildfires and the coexistence of flora and fauna, mainly with pumas. These are just a few examples of activities included in our master plan of conservation.

Reserva Cerro Paine seeks to promote the development of a conservationist culture, with actions directed towards school communities, universities, businesses, residents of Punta Arenas, Puerto Natales, Porvenir, scientific groups, scouts, and others that contribute to the care and recuperation of the environment. In the same way, AMA Torres del Paine has prioritized the reforestation of lands affected by wildfire through projects including the current lenga nursery and a lenga seed orchard.

The areas co-management (landowners and communities) benefit private conservation in the national park. According to experts, private conservation does not seek to complicate the ownership of private land. Rather, it is an ally that prompts landowners to care for nature through long-term plans and mobilizes communities to passively and actively contribute to conservation and monitor what goes on in the reserve.

Our reserve is also developing a biological portfolio with a register of the area’s flora and fauna, which will allow us to detect points-of-interest of biodiversity. According to Bahamonde, a leader of science and education investigation in Reserva Cerro Paine, “This register will be of great value for measuring Torres del Paine’s ecological conditions and advances in conservation, considering that Reserva Cerro Paine is part of the park. It is important to note that borders are artificial references of territory, because nature is without barriers.”

AMA Torres del Paine’s Reserva Cerro Paine Conservation Team integrates biologists, park rangers, tree farmers, tourism professionals, and specialists in territory, among others, to arrange the beginning of an ambitious and necessary plan.

WHY LENGAS?

Nelson points out that the forests of the area are mostly lenga, ñirre and coihue. Since lengas do not regrow after a fire, the reforestation plan prioritizes their conservation. “We want ecological restoration through planting tree farms. We hope that the lengas do not only have rapid growth, but that they also develop ecologically, so that we can diminish the need for chemical fertilizers and hormones, which can intervene in the ecosystem. We want to replicate the environment’s natural functions and only help a little rather than over-manipulate natural resources, which is ultimately negative for ourselves.”

The Participatory Management Plan commits socially through making agreements with primary and secondary schools and universities, creating educational and volunteer spaces, and forming connections between the reserve’s conservation and tourism workers, including conservation issues that may come up within the companies for which they work. With the help of a local school reforestation campaign that mobilized 700 students, AMA Torres del Paine planted approximately sixty thousand plants for forest recovery in Torres del Paine. These new trees are the most recent achievement in concretizing the reforestation of over seventeen thousand trees in Torres del Paine National Park from 2014 to 2017.

Human capital: academic training for tourism guides

  • In 2018, we created the Reserva Cerro Paine Training Academy with the goal of teaching tourism guides about regional history and patrimony, conservation, flora and fauna, glaciology, geology, and first aid. At the academy, many guides also became specialized in rock climbing, horseback riding, and mountain biking. Through these achievements, the commitment and the identity of our human resources was strengthened.

With the objective of improving visitors’ experiences, Reserva Cerro Paine Academy debuted in 2018 as a project that sought to strengthen the knowledge, skills, and technical capacity of tourism guides, teaching them a variety of topics, such as flora and fauna, history, geology, glaciology, and first aid. After the debut, workers and visitors were left with satisfactory and successful results.

Boris Gutiérrez, Deputy Manager of Organizational Development in Reserva Cerro Paine, highlighted the progress of the initial efforts and confirmed a year-long commitment to analyzing work done in the past and perfecting the content of the activities. The leader of the initiative emphasized the experience as “an innovation of high human valor that reinforces the identity of guides and the potency of the training.” The results of Reserva Cerro Paine’s efforts designated its human resources as an influencer for the region.

 

“We began by focusing on organizing and structuring the training, as well as forming a permanent academy that incorporates our service guidelines and strengthens our connection to the guides, season after season,” said Gutiérrez. Management supports this training model through updating information, procedures, and management plans, as well as promoting better standards and intervention protocols.

 

María José Marchant, Head of Excursion Center and experienced in tourism, lead the academy, planned a series of chats, and worked on methods to improve English language proficiency for all guides. This year, the Training Academy also established specialized objectives according to distinct areas of work.

 

“We are setting a milestone in the reserve’s history and evolution, and we will surely be a model for the tourism sector, forming workers that are skilled and knowledgeable about the history and biodiversity of Patagonia,” Gutiérrez concluded.

Each season, the reserve has 450 rotating workers throughout the year and a fixed staff of 100 people. The team is made up of professionals, technicians, and experts by trade.

 

For Alejandra Covacevich, Product and Experience Manager of Reserva Cerro Paine, the rush to train guides obliges us to improve our services, considering that visitor surveys show 90% satisfaction.

 

“We wanted to standardize our ascription and recognize guides that specialized in mountain biking, horseback riding, and climbing, since they add value to our services and deliver greater reliability to tourists,” he says.

Our workers’ sources of pride for the reserve are the link between the environment and the visitors’ experience. Covacevich explains that at the start of the program, guides are classified as juniors. After a year, they are proficient, and after another three years, advanced. Beyond three years, students typically receive opportunities to form valuable communities, collaborative networks, and coaching relationships between experts and beginners. “Our aim is for guides to perceive a tangible commitment to building long-term alliances and to install training benefits with a 360 degree reach, so that everyone wins,” he concludes.

 

The Reserva Cerro Paine Training Academy is an innovative project that undoubtedly sets a precedent in the region for highly qualified tourism guides.

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