Crossing the Andes on horseback from Chile into Argentina

10 day cabin and tentcamp based horseback trailride.

If you’d like to cross the Andes on horseback in more comfort, opt for our cabin to cabin version! Packhorses and an accompanying 4x4 pick-up truck will carry most of our luggage; more nights are spent in cozy cabins and the "Nevados del Sollipulli mountain lodge" instead of in tent camps; and additional guides help with the tents, the cooking, and the horses. Of course, as on all of our rides, your help is always welcome. Riding without luggage allows us to take a faster pace whenever the terrain permits, and the truck allows us to carry more personal items. The route is basically the same as on our 9-day trail ride, except that in order to meet the truck and reach the cabins we have to descend into the valleys more often, bringing us into closer contact with civilization.
Cross the Andes on horseback with us and get the best of two worlds and two historic horse cultures!
From the snow-capped volcanoes of the Chilean Andes, through a pass in Icalma, to the open valleys of the Argentinean pampas, we'll explore and witness the landscape transition as we ride. Encounter smoking volcanoes, snowy peaks, deep blue mountain lakes, and dense, towering rainforests during this once in a lifetime experience.
On the Chilean side we'll experience steep mountains and endless virgin rainforests with our low, sturdy Chilean Criollo horses. Crossing the border, we'll witness the unique Argentinean gaucho lifestyle, the vast plains, and the dramatic cliffs where we can admire the majestic Patagonian condor.

Itinerary Horseback ride across the Andes Chile - Argentina

  • Riders in front of Villarrica, on the Crossing the Andes on Horseback in Northern patagonia Trail
    DAY ONE

    Pick up in Pucon or Temuco in the afternoon, welcome to the farm. Time to get to know the horses, tack and equipment, and to get settled.

    DAY TWO

    We go for a day ride through the Mapuche Indian Community Quelhue, into the mountains of the Villarrica Forest reserve, and along the rapids of Trancura River to evaluate your riding experience, get familiar with saddle and tack, and to determine which horses to take to our great adventure. In the evening we enjoy a Chilean BBQ.

    DAY THREE - SIX

    we ride through virgin rainforests and dense stands of Coighue trees and bamboo, and pass by crystal mountain lakes and gurgling creeks. The trails lead through the National Park Huerquehue, the National Forest Reserve Villarrica and the Mapuche Indian Communities of Reigolil and Icalma. Overnights at the natural Hot springs of Rio Blanco and on the shore of Icalma Lake.

  • Mountain lake on the crossing the Andes on Horseback in Northern patagonia
    DAY SEVEN AND EIGHT

    On the 7th day we return to civilization again and ride through the small Mapuche settlement of Icalma where we arrange custom formalities with the Chilean border control before heading into the mountains to cross the border to Argentina. High in the mountains at the border we say goodbye to our Chilean horses and the guides that led us to this magnificent place. Then we cross the border 10 meters on foot, and greet Hernan and his wonderful Argentinean horses which will bring us through the unique world of the Argentinean Andes for the next two days.

  • Ale on the border, on the Crossing the Andes on Horseback in Northern patagonia Trail

    We ride the valleys and cliffs of Argentina, watch condors pass us by, meet shepherds with their herds of cattle or goats and enjoy amazing views over the endless wide open spaces of this uninhabited part of the world. On the evening of the 8th day we reach the outpost were Hernan lives with his horses and which marks the end of our journey. We celebrate the end of the trek with a typical Argentinean barbeque while recounting our adventures from the past week and sharing our impressions of this experience of a lifetime.

  • Argentina Pampa, on the Crossing the Andes on Horseback in Northern patagonia Trail
    DAY NINE

    On the 9th day we take a farewell ride to the condor nests in the steep rocks north of the camp, and through the high plain pastures where the gauchos graze their herds of sheep and goats in the summer months.

    DAY TEN

    Transfer from Hernan's ranch back to Pucón, Chile were we pick up luggage and say farewell to Antilco and the horses that carried us in Chile. If desired, travelers may finish their trip in Argentina and travel on directly from Hernan's, or spend more days riding in the Argentine pampas

Facts about the Crossing the Andes Trailride

Meeting point

Pucón, 3.00 pm first day, we can arrange for pick up at Temuco airport

Duration

10 Days, 9 nights, 8 days on horseback, one day transfer Argentina - Chile in private bus

Luggage

Luggage is carried by pack horses and accompanying truck

Number of Riders

2 - 8 riders

Riders Qualification required

Intermediate physical condition, experience on horseback is necessary. We ride up to 8 hours a day with breaks; walking, trotting and cantering.

Accommodation

6 nights in double rooms in cabins on the the last days in Chile in Argentina , 2 nights in tent camps. In the tent camps 2 riders share one tent. We always try to give solo travelers a single tent. Because of weight issues this may not always be possible.

Sanitary equipment

Shower, tab water, and toilet on all days but 4th and 7th day.

Food

Complete food and soft drinks from dinner on the first day to the farewell BBQ on the last day. On the trail we have breakfast, a snack at midday and dinner at the campfire. We serve wonderful Chilean and Argentinean wines for dinner.

Luggage

Luggage is carried by pack horses and accompanying truck

Personal luggage

Here is a suggestion of things to bring to the ride. The luggage you bring on the ride schould fit our waterproof packroll of 20x12x12 inches.

Includes

All transports to and from Pucón, all fees, all equipment from spoon to tent and sleeping mats.

Personal luggage

Here is a suggestion of things to bring to the ride. The luggage you bring on the ride schould fit our waterproof packroll of 20x12x12 inches.

Check out more photos and videos from this and other rides at our Gallerie

Great landscape, on the Crossing the Andes on Horseback in Northern patagonia Trail

Luis in the snow, on the Crossing the Andes on Horseback in Northern patagonia Trail

Even in December we will still find snow on the passes

Argentina landscape, on the Crossing the Andes on Horseback in Northern patagonia Trail

Argentinean landscape - more dry and open wide

Evening on a campsite, on the Crossing the Andes on Horseback in Northern patagonia Trail

Evening at a campsite in Argentinean pampa

Border control in hile, on the Crossing the Andes on Horseback in Northern patagonia Trail

Chilean border control, 2 hours on horseback away from the actual border.

Spanisch course + accommodation in appartment living room

Spanisch course + accommodation in appartment living room additional bed

Spanisch course + accommodation in appartment kitchen

Spanisch course + accommodation in appartment dining

Spanisch course + accommodation in appartment living and dining

Spanisch course + accommodation in appartment bedroom

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Crossing the Andes on Horseback

Enjoy a documentary filmed by german national TV about our expedition to Sollipulli Volcano, our Chile - Argentina ride and life on our ranch.

Our most valuable partners

Meanwhile our team still works on the video presentation you can enjoy the most beautifull video ever made about our amazing country.

How do our guests see the rides

Please check at our testimonial section, the press releases or Trip Advisor for most recent reviews on our trailrides

Placeholder imageWe are proud winners of the 2015 and 2016 Trip Advisor Exellence Award.

#2 of 24 Outdoor Activities in Pucon

Placeholder image"A Highlight of our RTW Trip”

Reviewed 8 August 2015 Msmarits

Thanks for arranging that fantastic ride for us, it truly was a trip of a lifetime.

Lindy and Ron Echlin [ronechlin1@gmail.com]

It has been one of the best experiences of my life, and I will certainly be returning some time.

Sarah Barford [menorcaonhorseback@hotmail.com]