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Chile Backcountry Ski Expedition

Group of ski mountaineers on the slope of a 6,000m peak in Chile with Alpenglow Expeditions' professionally guided ski mountaineering trip to Chile.
Group of ski mountaineers on the slope of a 6,000m peak in Chile with Alpenglow Expeditions' professionally guided ski mountaineering trip to Chile.

Chile Backcountry Ski Expedition

Intermediate 9 Days Chile
Backcountry ski and ride in the mountains of Chile – the perfect next step for experienced backcountry ski and splitboard enthusiasts. Chile is an incredible playground for a backcountry skier or rider, offering breathtaking snow-covered volcanoes that rise high above the Chilean forest.
Sep 07, 2024 – Sep 16, 2024
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Group of ski mountaineers on the slope of a 6,000m peak in Chile with Alpenglow Expeditions' professionally guided ski mountaineering trip to Chile.

Start ski mountaineering in Chile.

The wide, steep slopes of the Chilean volcanoes will give our teams over 5000’ of descent as they soak in the panoramic, postcard-worthy views. These slopes provide a blank canvas for our teams to carve out some of the best runs of their lives. Aside from skiing, Chile’s unique culture and landscape create opportunities for lifelong memories. Imagine volcano corn skiing, natural volcanic mineral hot springs, and farm-fresh Chilean food to finish the day. Chile provides the perfect location to apply your skillset to new places while being lead by our certified guides.

FITNESS

Skiers and riders must be in excellent physical shape to join this expedition. Participants must be prepared to climb 4,000 – 5,000 vertical feet in a day. Big days, but lots of fun! Regular, challenging exercise for many months in advance of departure is the only way to gain the necessary level of fitness that is needed on big peaks. Those joining our teams should have at least a general understanding of what it takes to train for an expedition like this. We recommend a structured training program at a gym or with a personal trainer. Please contact us for more information on physical training.

TECHNICAL

skiers must be competent on a variety of terrain and snow conditions. Skiers must be able to link turns in steep terrain (up to 45 degrees) while maintaining control. Skiers must also have basic snow climbing experience including use of ice axe and crampons.

EXPERIENCE

Skiers must have at least 15 days of backcountry ski touring experience in a variety of conditions and steep terrain.
Ski mountaineer on the summit of a 6,000m peak in Chile with Alpenglow Expeditions' professionally guided ski mountaineering trip to Chile.

Chile Backcountry Ski Expedition Itinerary

Day 1
Arrival into Chile

Welcome to Temuco, Chile, the largest city in Chile’s “Lake District”. After you arrive in the early afternoon and meet the team, you’ll board our vehicle and travel through lush farmland and dense forest in search of snow-capped volcanoes. The 2-hr drive brings you to our new home, the Canon del Blanco Lodge. From here, you’re perfectly situated for the next two days of skiing and riding.

Day 2
Climb and Ski Lonquimay Volcano

After breakfast at Canon del Blanco Lodge, you’ll load up for a 1hr drive to the base of Volcan Lonquimay. Your first tour of the trip brings you high above the town of Malalcahuello and the ski resorts located at the base of Lonquimay. In perfect conditions, you’ll be able to skin to the top, but everyone will have an ice axe, ski crampons and boot crampons in case we encounter firm snow. A quick ride up the lift will shorten our tour. At the top, you’ll be standing above more than 4,000’ of perfect spring snow that leads back to the car.

Day 3
Climb and Ski Llaima Volcano

Across the valley from Lonquimay you’ll see Volcan Llaima, your second objective of the trip. After an early rise and breakfast, you’ll hop in the car for another 1hr drive to the base of the volcano. While your legs will feel heavy to start, this feeling will quickly dissipate as the sun begins to rise, and you find yourself climbing another perfect slope. Llaima is a bit steeper than Lonquimay, and it’s crater rim is covered in ultra- sharp lava rock formed during an eruption in 2009. After you descend more than 5,000’ back to the base, you’ll be racing for the hot springs at Canon del Blanco Lodge.

Day 4
Rest day in Pucón

With nearly 10,000’ under your belt, today’s leisurely pace will be welcomed. After you rise for a late breakfast at Canon del Blanco Lodge, the team will drive to Pucon, a small mountain town near the base of Volcan Villarica. Known for its outdoor activities, Pucon is home to many hot springs and blends lazy afternoons with a vibrant and social scene in the evening. An afternoon soak and dinner in town will prepare you for tomorrow’s tour on Volcan Villarica.

Day 5
Climb and Ski Villarica

One of the most active volcanoes in Chile, Villarica is the prize of Pucon. A 45 minute drive will bring you to the start of your climb. A bit steeper than the previous two, you’ll start your ascent on skins, but will switch to crampons as you near the top. The strong smell of sulfur will let you know you’ve made it, and you’ll quickly switch to skis and boards before your third perfect spring run of the trip. Back in Pucon, you’ll have the afternoon to explore before another night in town.

Day 6
Rest day in Puerto Varas

After a leisurely breakfast in Pucon, you’ll continue to travel south through the Lake District to the town of Puerto Varas. Located along the shores of Lago Llanquihue, Puerto Varas is a little town with wide streets and grassy lawns. The last objective, Volcan Osorno, stands proudly just across the lake to the east.

Day 7
Extra Day

Today we will decide to continue our recovery as a rest day/weather day, go climb & ski Casa Blanca, or hit the Hot Springs!

Day 8
Climb and Ski Osorno Volcano

Your last tour of the trip is arguably the best. Right on the shore of Lake Llanquihue, Volcan Osorno is the prize. After an hour drive to the base, and 4-5hr ascent, you’ll have earned every bit of glory you’re about to experience. This last descent back to the car marks the completion of your adventure, and it’s time to celebrate. You’ll head back to Puerto Varas for a grand goodbye dinner.

Day 9
Drive to Puerto Montt and Depart

Depart from Puerto Montt.

Chile Ski Expedition Trip Packet

Our Chile Backcountry Ski Guides

Get to know some of the guides you might be skiing with in Chile.

Chile Backcountry Ski Expedition Questions

Below are some answers to commonly asked questions about backcountry skiing in Chile
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