In February of 2018 we used Dittmar Adventures to organize and guide a 7 day/6 night modified O trek. The trek follows the basic O circuit route except that from Torres Camp at the base of the Towers you continue on to Camp Japones, where you overnight, and the next day take the Oggioni Pass route to Refugio Dickson. The trail over the Oggioni Pass is not marked and must be done with a guide as it requires fording a river and bushwhacking over the pass and through a dense forest. Despite the challenges the views from the top of the pass are some of the most rewarding in the park.
For a day by day overview of life on the trail see the following posts.
Day 1-Hotel Las Torres to Camp Japones
Day 2-Camp Japones to Refugio Dickson
Day 3-Refugio Dickson to Camp Los Perros
Day 4-Camp Los Perros to Refugio Grey
Day 5-Refugio Grey to Refugio Paine Grande
Day 6-Refugio Paine Grande to Refugio Los Cuernos via French Valley
Day 7-Refugio Los Cuernos to Hotel Las Torres
Dittmar Adventures made all bookings for our trip and supplied tents and all the food at the camp sites (Camp Japones and Los Perros). The other nights, where we stayed at refugios, meals were arranged by Dittmar but provided by the refugio. We had arranged to do all tent camping but opted to sleep in bunkrooms at Refugio Dickson and Grey when beds became available.
For the 4 of us we had a guide, a cook, and two porters. The cook left our party after Los Perros as all further meals would be supplied by the refugios. The entire crew was professional and worked hard. Our tents were always set up and waiting for us upon arrival at camp.
We were responsible for carrying our personal gear and had made arrangements that the porters would carry our sleeping bags and pads. This turned out to be a big advantage as Camille and I had rented very heavy bags in Puerto Nateles. If you own a good, light bag I would not recommend renting as the rented bags are around 4 pounds.
The food supplied by Dittmar Adventures was more than adequate and included fresh vegetables at dinner. Nico the cook did an amazing job considering the non-existent “kitchen” facilities. They also did a good job of providing vegetarian options including cheese sandwiches instead of tuna. Sack lunches handed out at breakfast included plenty of snacks to get us through the day. Unless you are very big eater there should be no reason to bring extra food. Meals provided by the refugios varied from place to place but again were perfectly adequate.
Our guide, Carlos, was professional and spoke good English. He has a dry sense of humor and was a pleasant hiking companion. He was very patient with us and a set a good pace to get us where we needed to be at a reasonable time.
The information provided by the company before the trek, such as the itinerary and packing list, were generally good although they should have included river crossing sandals rather than shower thongs. The day before the trek we met Carlos at the Dittmar office for an informative briefing which was very helpful for any last minute decisions on what you need to bring.
Overall I was quite happy with the staff and the quality of the services provided.
For links to all the posts in this series see the Hiking in Patagonia page.