The Founder of NorthFace Opens Patagonia National Park
picture of the cover of a sample tour itinerary
  • Get This Itinerary Now! 📬
Chile News

The Founder of NorthFace Opens Patagonia National Park

3 min read

Jun 1, 2011

|

Share This Post

Last updated on October 20th, 2020 at 09:30 am

Patagonia National Park

Patagonia gauchos, avid hikers, and environmentalists have a reason to rejoice: the co-founder of the North Face brand, Douglas Tompkins, and his wife Kristine, opened a the Patagonia National Park in southern Chile in 2012. The new park seems like the perfect excuse to take a Chile Patagonia travel vacation or a Chile Tour.

While the large swath of rugged Patagonia land — over 200,000 acres — has been bought by a couple of do-gooders with a passion for preserving Patagonia, they will eventually turn the park over to the Chilean government.

Sandwiched between the Jeinimeni and Tamango National Reserves and nestled in the Chacabuco Valley, this former sheep estancia allows the Chilean government to combine the region into 460,000 acres of protected Patagonia. In the Aysén and Fjords area of southern Patagonia, the reserve  rivals the other famous national parks of Chile’s nether regions such as Torres del Paine and Parque Nacional Laguna San Rafael. Ruta 40 Patagonia

Patagonia Conservation at the National Park

Dotted with lakes, grasslands, forests, mountains, and wetlands, the region is home to an incredible variety of natural and biological diversity. Conservation efforts are now underway to “re-wild” the ecosystems that have been negatively affected by agriculture, sheep herding and grazing, barbed wire fences, and invasive plants. Volunteers with Conservacion Patagonica, also founded by the Tompkins, have been working to remove cattle, fences, and invasive plants and replace them with native plants such as the grass coiron. Guanacos, huemuls, and other animals have already made a comeback in restored areas.

Trails and Hikes at Patagonia National Park

The Conservation Patagonica is also blazing trails, campgrounds, and shelters that will allow visitors to enjoy the park for decades to come. A 2.2-mile trail called the La Vega Loop connects to the Lagunas Altas trail for a 10-mile hike through a former sheep ranch, past the Chacabuco river valley, beech forests, and grasslands, and winds up to Tamanguito Peak. Plenty more trails offer hikers a variety of treks through the wilderness.

Local Community Efforts

Tompkins has been dedicated to providing jobs and stimulating the local economy. In fact, one of the reasons the Tomkins have been successful in purchasing the land was that they promised to provide sellers with work once the park opened. The park’s headquarters will feature the Aysen Natural History and Information Center, a restaurant, and plenty more amenities to attract locals as well as travelers from abroad. The headquarters are made of durable, recycled, and local materials. The Patagonia National Park also aspires to be the first park to be supplied with fully renewable energy sources, with electricity generated from nearby wind turbines.

Interested in a Chile Patagonia Travel package? Check out our Chile Patagonia: Lakes and Andes Tour, an 8-day tour that includes Torres del Paine.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Create Your Own Custom Tour

Click your preferences: Destinations & Activities. Be as specific or general as you like - or click Help Me Decide! We'll spice it with hidden gems & personal tips to create your perfect trip.

Choose Amazon destinations (optional)
Choose destinations (optional)
Choose Bolivia destinations (optional)
Choose Brazil destinations (opt)
Choose Chile destinations (opt)
Choose Colombia destinations (optional)
Choose Ecuador & Galapagos destinations (optional)
Choose Paraguay destinations (optional)
Choose Patagonia & Antarctica destinations (optional)
Choose Peru destinations (optional)
Choose Interests
Choose activities
What category of accommodation?

You can choose more than one!

When would you like to go?
for
How many travelers?
age groups
age groups
Review my trip summary
destinations

activities

accommodations

when

who

Highly recommended - Phone: We ❤️ to talk! A brief chat with your personal Travel Consultant helps us create your perfect trip!

">

Last updated on October 20th, 2020 at 09:30 am

Hooray! Thanks for Sharing!

If you have an additional 30 seconds we’d love to learn more about you…

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Custom Form Blue Popup

  • Including accommodations, transportation and activities/tours.
  • One Moment Please

    We are matching your tour idea with the right Travel Consultant
    who will be in touch shortly.
    Thank you for your request!