Day 1: Copiapo Airport - Copiapo (200m)
Transfer to hotel, meeting with guide and question time.
Later we have a welcome dinner
45 mins (D) Hotel
Day 2: Copiapo – Valle Chico (3000m)
We leave Copiapo in the moring and head east up the dry Andean valleys. The scenery changes from dry mountains to rivers in the lower valleys. We make camp by the road in one of these valleys. This first night is part essential acclimatization to the altitude before we head up to the Altiplano.
3 – 4 hours Driving (BLD) camping
Day 3: Valle Chico - Laguna Santa Rosa (3800m)
We make a short walk in the morning, again a part of our acclimatization. After lunch we pack up camp and drive to our second camp. En route we must cross a high mountain pass, Portezuelo Maricunga which is 4125m above sea level. From there we go down to Santa Rosa Lagoon and Maricunga Salt Flat, where our second camp is located at 3800m. We are now in the middle of the Chilean high plateau, which is the most southern part of the Atacama Desert and home to a diverse range of wildlife including flamingos and local species of fox. In the evening we take a short walk to the nearby lagoon where we may spot brightly coloured flamingos on the water
2 – 3 hours (BLD) camping
Day 4: Laguna Santa Rosa – Siete Hermanos (4950m) - Laguna Santa Rosa
After breakfast we continue our acclimatization process by climbing the easy summit of Cerro Siete Hermanos, after which we return to our camp. We will probably see some guanaco herds during the climb - a type of wild llama.
6 - 7 hours (BLD) camping
Day 5: Laguna Santa Rosa –Mina Marte – Laguna Negro Francisco (4100m)
We drive through an incredible landscape leading us to Laguna Del Negro Francisco (4200m). During the drive we pass by Mina Marte, an abandoned gold mine in the middle of the Chilean high plateau. We stay at the CONAF ranger station.
2 – 3 hours driving (BLD) Hostel
Day 6: Laguna Negro Francisco – Volcano Copiapo (6050m)
Laguna Negro Francisco
We wake very early in the morning, with a transfer to the start of the climb. The summit is at 6050m with views of all the surrounding mountains. Near the summit are a few Inca tombs with have been excavated by archaeologists some time ago. We return in the afternoon to Laguna Negro
9 – 10 hours (BLD) Hostel
Day 7: Laguna Negro Francisco – Laguna Verde (4350m)
We leave the Vn. Copiapó region and drive back on the same road, heading North West to the international route to Argentina and gaining altitude very quickly. We can now see Ojos peak in the far distance. Later in the day we arrive at Laguna Verde. We have the use of a base camp tent and can spend the afternoon relaxing in the natural hot springs.
3 – 4 hours driving (BLD) camping
Day 8: Laguna Verde - Atacama Refuge (5200m)
Today we drive up to base camp. We make our way south, winding 17km down a rough back road, testing our driving abilities to the limit. We cross sand flats and steep rocky, sometimes snow-covered slopes, finally arriving at the Atacama refuge, at 5200m.
2 – 3 hours driving (BLD) camping
Day 9: Atacama Refugio (BC) -Tejos Refugio (5825m) – Base Camp
Today we carry some food and fuel to Camp I (Tejos) following the sandy and rocky slopes. We drop our loads inside the metallic hut, take a look around and then head back to the BC. Carrying these loads will improve our acclimatization.
5 – 7 hours (BLD) camping
Day 10: Rest day at Atacama Refugio (Base camp)
We use this day to rest and recover, before we go up to camp I and make the final push to the summit, which will be very physically demanding. We spend the evening preparing our gear for the summit day. This day could also be a reserve day in case we have bad weather.
Day 11: Atacama Refugio - Tejos Refugio (Camp I ) (5825m)
Today we work our way up, following the mountain slopes, and carrying all the rest of the gear we will need for the summit day. It's a short day: we arrive early to get hydrated and rest for tomorrow's effort.
3 – 4 hours (BLD) camping
Day 12: Tejos Refuge - Summit (6893m) - Tejos Refuge – Atacama Refugio
Starting very early in the morning, we climb 8 to 9 hours up to the summit, once again on land that may be snowy or dry depending on the weather. From this incredible summit we will see all the major peaks of the area, including Tres Cruces and Pissis to name just a few. Depending on how much time we have, we can walk back down to Refugio Atacama.
12 – 16 hours (BLD) camping
Day 13: Tejos Refuge - Bahia Inglesa (5m)
We dismantle the tents, organize the gear, pack the equipment and load the cars. We drive back to Copiapó, and onto Bahia Inglesa next to the beach for a relaxing rest.
5 - 6 hours (BLD) hotel
Day 14: Bahia Inglesa - Airport
Transfer to the airport
End of Services
30mins driving (B)