The Villarrica offers its slopes to ski in the winter and invites climbers to its summit in the summer. If you are fit, the experience of leaning into the mouth of this volcano in action is mandatory.
Willy, from Sol y Nieve, asked me if I dared and if I was fit. I still wonder if I managed to comply with this physical condition but I was extremely eager to climb the Villarrica. A symbol of the city of Pucón, the Villarrica rules over the national park bearing the same name. At 2,840 m.a.s.l., this still active volcano offers good snow for skiing in the winter and excellent panoramic views of the lakes in the summer.
The following day at 7 in the morning, I was already in the office, meeting point for the group that was about to leave on this excursion. After trying the equipment on and meeting our guides, we left towards the reserve, under a cloudless sky and a bright sun that would forecast a fine day. We traveled 12km from the center of Pucón to the entrance of the park, where we stopped at the office in order to have a word with the forest rangers and get familiar with the natural characteristics of the protected area and the volcano.
One of the most active volcanoes in Chile, the Villarrica has had 82 historical eruptions so far. The most tragic was in December 1971 and the last one was registered in 1984. Modified at his will, the landscape surrounding the volcano has not lost the beauty of its monkey-puzzle forests.
We continued to the base of the volcano, where the ski resort chairlift 5 is located. This lift would take us to the platform from where we would start climbing.
See more points of interest in Villarrica
Level of Difficulty: Medium - high.
Duration: 9 hours average in all.
Timetables: Excursions leave at 7:30am.
Recommendations: It is essential to carry enough water or juice for hydration during the trip, good sun protection (above 15), lunch, chocolate and fruit. Bordering Lake Villarrica, 25km are traveled along a paved road up to Pucón. One kilometer before reaching the city, take the detour to the left and travel 9 km along the rubble road that accesses the national park. Inside this area and passing by the forest ranger office, take the trail on the right towards the Villarrica winter resort. Timetable: excursions leave at 7:30am.
Contact: Sol y Nieve
Lincoyan 361-B (4920000) Pucón, IX Región, Chile Tel: +56 45-2444761 Cel: +56 88286571
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