7 Essential Things To Know & Add To Your “O” Circuit Training & Planning
Updated: Jun 7, 2020
Location: Torres del Paine, Chile
Nearest Airport: Punta Arenas, Chile
Average Trekking Duration: 6 to 8 days
Highest Altitude: 1,300m (Paso John Garner)
This iconic trek is the cherry on top of the cake in terms of treks and routes in Patagonia. With incredible scenes of ice fields, tower-like rock formations and the most beautiful starry nights you will ever see, it just doesn’t get much better than this high altitude trek.
But don’t let the beauty of this trek fool you. It is physically challenging, not for the faint hearted and definitely not those who don’t want to put the time in to train and prepare. Whatsmore, the weather conditions make it super adventurous (and even more challenging) with the ever-changing winds, rain and terrain.
The Top 7 Essential Things To Know & Add To Your Planning:
1. The best times of year to go is January and February but if you’d prefer to miss the rush of other trekkers then aim to go in March when it is a bit quieter but rougher in terms of weather.
2. Every year, Torres del Paine increases by about 30% in popularity during high season. It is of course amazing that more and more people are getting outdoors, but it does mean that you need to book camping spots ahead of time.
3. You can also wild camp if you’d prefer but you will be carrying a little more weight if that is your go to choice. If you would prefer to do this then you must train even harder with the full weight of your backpack, particularly during your Aerobic, Ankle Mobility and Leg sessions. Click here to go straight to “The 6-Week “O” Circuit Training Plan”.
4. The starting point is at the Welcome Centre of the trek. You’ll need to catch a bus there and on the way stop at the headquarters where you can pick up and pay for your permit and sign in. There are heaps of buses specifically for the trekkers doing this route, making this part of the start super easy and convenient.
5. You can only go counter clockwise in direction on The “O” Circuit.
6. Remember to get insurance that covers you for treks or hikes under 3,000m. There is no search and rescue in the park so it is even more important that you have insurance and keep a printed copy with you at all times.
7. The “O” Circuit is physically challenging, with most people complaining of the “coming down” parts that made it so much harder. With proper preparation and training, you can not only avoid those aches and pains but you can thrive and enjoy every single step of this magnificent trek, simply by following a specific mountaineering and trekking training plan. If you are going to do The “O” Circuit then make sure you read this blog and follow the specific “O” plan to prepare you for the adventure of a lifetime: