Hired the back pack, bought the copious quantities of pasta, rice, oatmeal and dried fruits to take on a nine night "circuit" of the Torres Del Paine massif with roughly 65lbs of camp gear, fuel and the most boring food known to man. Rudely optimistic as I´ve never hiked with more than a day sack, I set out with a Canadian hiking machine (Marcin) and an over enthusiastic American (Jeff) who shot off like a man on a mission.
(The team members - Marcin, Jeff)
Torres del Paine is a seperate range to the Andes and rises 3000m over otherwise flat land, with light coloured granite spires pushing up to form the characteristic horns and towers, the horns being capped rather incongruously with black sedimentary rock.
Starting at the park administration, the first days hike gives an overview of the whole range that you don´t get from closer up and is well worth the extra time. The view point over the lake is amazing.
First night camp was 20kms away in an organised site by a lake with an over large mouse population lying in wait to chew through anything not hung in trees, including backpacks and tents.