historic public access to the Hielo Azul Hill Refugio starts in the Hue
Nain Camping located on the Azul River east bank which can be approached
through the Azul River coast path. This access used until February 2006
was arbitrary shut down for public use by the settler Criado.
As an answer the Town Council Secretary opened a new access which adds
a one more hour walk in order to reach the suspension bridge through which
we cross over the Azul River, where the Refugio track starts.
The new provisory access begins in a neighbours passage located on the
Azul River Coast Road, going through the Dulcería Rio Azul, on
the left hand. Access shown by a Town Council sign: ¨Acceso Refugio
After a five minutes walk you can see the Azul River and two footbridge,
one made of cement and an older one, don´t cross them over. Instead
continue through the river border, upstream for about forty-five minutes.
Follow the red-yellow marks painted on round small sheets.
Reaching the suspension footbridge, it is easily identify as it is the
only one nearby and has a sign with recommendations for Hielo Azul travellers.
Once you cross over the footbridge (suspension bridge) the path is on
your left and goes straight upward. It is clearly indicated in such a
way that you should find red-yellow marks as well as white-red ones. Cows
make secondary tracks all over the forest, reason why you should walk
paying attention to the marks on the trees.
The first strong climb lasts about fifteen-twenty minutes till you reach
a green prairie with few trees and a wooden fence that has to be open.
On your left you will see a round farmyard. Please close the wooden door.
In the prairie the marks are painted on posts stacked to the ground. The
track will take you quickly to the right until a stream cross over and
back again to the forest.
The climb is steep for about an hour and a half, going through different
kinds of forest and crossing over only one more stream. Nearby the ¨Mirador
del Mallín Ahogado¨ (Mallín Ahogado Viewpoint) the climb
is gentle for about 30 minutes till you reach the ¨Mallín de
los Palos¨, a swamp that is crossed over walking over sticks specially
Once the mallín is left behind the climb is steep and turns to
the right. In about thirty-five minutes you reach the ¨Mirador del
Valle del río Raquel¨ (Raquel River Valley Viewpoint). From
this height onwards the forest will only be of Lengas (Nothofagus Pumilio).
After the viewpoint you will find to more steep but short climbs and the
rest of the track is much more pleasant for the traveller. Fourty minutes
away the Raquel Viewvalley you reach the Teno Stream edge. The Teno Stream
is born in the Hielo Azul Glacier thaw where you can find the refugio,
by its southern edge. On this point, you are three kilometres away from
the Refugio, a fourty-five minutes walk. The track is mostly flat. Ten
minutes before reaching the Refugio you can see on your right a sign indicating
the turn aside to the Refugio Natación.
- Climb early
- Carry water from the Azul River
- Follow the red and yellow marks
- Do not light a fire nor camp on the track
- Do not throw papers neither waste
- Take a sleeping bag, wether you camp or sleep in the refugio
- Respect the leaving hour
- If this is your first mountain experience, don not go by your one.