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The Great Patagonia Run 2024

Published on: 10/05/2024

At Go Ape, we're all about living the adventure life, not just talking about it. We're not only dedicated to giving every visitor an awesome time but also to supporting our team's own adventures.

Every year, our co-owners can access our "Adventure Fund" to fund their own incredible trips. Everyone can pitch their adventure plans, and we share the funds.

Check out co-owner Vic Herbert's amazing trek through Patagonia, covering 235km and crossing the Argentina-Chile border twice!

By Victoria Herbert

When you see an Instagram advert that says, ‘fancy an epic adventure here?’ with a beautiful photograph of bright blue glacial lakes and jagged, snow-capped mountains, then perhaps obviously there’s a voice in your head that says ‘yeah of course!’.

But so often this voice is shushed and told ‘don’t be ridiculous, we can’t do that because (insert reason here)’ So, what happens when there are no reasons not to and you allow yourself the opportunity to go on an epic adventure? 

I signed up to the inaugural Great Patagonia Run. A 235km (ish) run which would see a group of 25 of us cross the border of Argentina and Chile twice, sleep in outrageously small tents for two people, eat rehydrated meals and carry A LOT of heavy bags. As a snapshot this may sound awful, but there’s nothing quite like a bit of hardship to bond a group of people together.

The day after arriving in the country we had a bone jangling 12 hour bus ride to get us to our start point near the Chilean border with Argentina. We camped and awoke early to pack up and officially start our running adventure. However, in true adventure style, the plan didn’t quite go to plan and our luggage (tents, food and cooking equipment included) couldn’t be driven across the border and no mans land to our next vehicle check point, we had to carry it.

Go Ape co-owner and team hiking in Patagonia in the mountains

 All 11 kilometres of it! Looking at the enormous pile of bags and the few of us, it didn’t look like it would be possible. Yet somehow, laden like pack horses and with an impressive dose of determination, we made it. The 3 hours I spent lugging some awkward bags across no mans land was one of the highlights of the trip for me, as it proved what myself and the others were capable of and instantly gave us a great story to share and connect over.

Go Ape co-owner and running team carrying packs in Patagonia

Patagonia certainly delivers on the scenery front. At every turn in the gravel roads we followed we were greeted with another spectacular view. Icy blue lakes, waterfalls, snow-capped mountains, lush meadows of wild flowers, glaciers and blue skies – a real sight which I still see when I close my eyes.

An adventure, no matter how big or small as long as it pushes you out of your comfort zone is a wonderful way to build your confidence and make you wonder what else you can achieve.

Go Ape co-owner by Patagonian lake on an adventure

It doesn’t have to be a physical challenge either, a mental or emotional one can have the same results at proving to yourself that you have the tools and ability to tackle more than you thought possible.

The following day, after another wild camp by the shores of a lake, we were able to fully stretch our legs and run without the burden of heavy bags. I’ve never felt freedom like it. The pure joy of being immersed in that landscape, running up and down hills like a kid again with new found friends is one I will never forget.

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Go Ape co-owner on Great Patagonia run