Chorrillo del Salto

Patagonia / Los Glaciares National Park, Santa Cruz, Argentina

Rating: 2     Difficulty: 2
Chorrillo del Salto

TABLE OF CONTENTS



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INTRODUCTION

El Chorrillo del Salto I believe was actually the name for both the river and the waterfall (though I'm not totally sure about this). I've also seen the falls referred to as Cascada del Salto as well as Chorillo del Salto (though the latter I think was mispelled). In any case, we thought this was a very pleasant little diversion as we were looking for a waterfall excursion that wouldn't take a lot out of us (unlike some of the other longer hikes that we ended up doing in the area).

The waterfall apparently came from the melting snow and glaciers accumulated from the imposing Fitz Roy Massif, which was an impressive chain of tall and sharp mountains towering well behind the charming town of El Chaltén. I believe the falls was 20m in height. However, the falls faced east so it would probably be best seen in morning light.

Since we were here in the late afternoon when everything was in shadow, we were also able to take long exposure photographs, but the dominance of shadows ensured that there wouldn't be a whole lot of color in our photos. Then again, had we come earlier in the day, we might've had to contend with shadows splitting the scene which would've made for terrible photographs. Also, I'm sure its flow would diminish over time the later into the Patagonian Summer it would get.

We were able to get decent direct views of the waterfall from the end of the trail as well as more angled (but somewhat suboptimal) views from a steep scrambling path that went higher up the cliff alongside the falls. I recalled having to do a little bit of skirting the stream to get the photo you see at the very top of the page without getting my feet wet.

If we had to walk to Chorrillo del Salto from El Chaltén, it would have been about 3km one-way (or 1 hour) from town. However, we hired a car and got closer to the trailhead. So we ended up only spending about 30+ minutes of walking in each direction. Actually, we stopped the car at the wrong place (about 800m before the actual car park) so the amount of walking could be even far less than what we ended up doing to get to the falls. We certainly could've saved ourselves a bit of time and effort by simply paying better attention to the signs.

The walk was mostly flat and quite easy to follow.




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PHOTO JOURNAL

On the road to El Chaltén with the Fitz Roy Massif looming high above the plainsOn the road to El Chaltén (where Chorrillo del Salto was located) with the Fitz Roy Massif looming high above the plains
Closer look at El Chorrillo del SaltoCloser look at El Chorrillo del Salto
Hard to believe that a short distance upstream of Chorrillo del Salto led up to lakes and vistas as dramatic as what's shown here of the Fitz Roy MassifHard to believe that a short distance upstream of Chorrillo del Salto led up to lakes and vistas as dramatic as what's shown here of the Fitz Roy Massif
Nice view of the valley as we drove route 23 from El Chaltén to the trailheadNice view of the valley as we drove route 23 from El Chaltén to the trailhead

A no parking sign, but if you didn't know Spanish, would you be able to tell that you couldn't park here?A no parking sign, but if you didn't know Spanish, would you be able to tell that you couldn't park here?

Continuing on the unpaved road towards Chorrillo del SaltoContinuing on the unpaved road towards the falls

Julie on the trail to Chorrillo del Salto though we started to hike on the trail a bit before the actual trailheadJulie on the trail to Chorrillo del Salto though we started to hike on the trail a bit before the actual trailhead

Julie on an open part of the trailJulie on an open part of the trail

Continuing to follow the signs to Chorrillo del SaltoContinuing to follow the signs to the falls

Finally at the trailhead for Chorrillo del SaltoFinally at the trailhead for Chorrillo del Salto

Julie checking out Chorrillo del SaltoJulie checking out Chorrillo del Salto

Profile view of Chorrillo del Salto with wildflowers blooming in its mistProfile view of the falls with wildflowers blooming in its mist

Julie heading back towards the trailhead and ultimately our parked car a bit furtherJulie heading back towards the trailhead and ultimately our parked car a bit further

If we didn't have our own car hire, we could've walked the 3km from townIf we didn't have our own car hire, we could've walked the 3km from town

Heading back to town along the unsealed route 23Heading back to town along the unsealed route 23 (actually I don't think any of the roads in the area were paved)


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VIDEOS OF THE FALLS


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DRIVING DIRECTIONS

From El Chaltén, continue on Route 23 north for about 3km to its car park. The trail continues a little over 500m from there to the falls.

For geographical context, El Chaltén was about 213km (nearly 3.5 hours drive) north of El Calafate. El Calafate was a 3.5-hour flight from Buenos Aires.




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ITINERARIES

For more information about our itineraries involving this waterfall, check out the following links.




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MAP OF THE FALLS



Click here for the full World of Waterfalls map





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TRIP REPORTS

For more information about our experiences with this waterfall, check out the following travel stories.




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TRIP PLANNING RESOURCES




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NEARBY WATERFALLS




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