Lago Puelo National Park is located in the northwestern part of the lower half of Argentina. It sits near the border of Argentina and Chile. The park covers an area of 106.85 square miles (276.74 sq km). The park complements neighboring Los Alerces National Park which sits just to the south also along the border.
Lake Puelo is the cornerstone of the park which is surrounded by hte national park borders. The region features Patagonic forests and steppes an ecosystem that reflects the high Andes mountains. Elms, hazel, cypress, coihue, arrayan, and tique trees are some of the species visitors can anticipate seeing.
There are multiple rivers and smaller lakes found with the park and surrounding region. The mountainous area surrounding these lakes create remarkable scenic views.
There are numerous plant species that elevate the splendor of the Valdivian rain forest vegetation. The cougar and red fox are two of the more exciting species that visitors hope to see. Other species include nutria, Andean deer, and the world's smallest deer known locally as pudu.
Lake Puelo and the surrounding mountainous landscapes creat scenic landscapes that are the highlights for many people. However, spotting some of the wildlife, particularly the elusive cougar is highlights for others.
Puelo Lake is the centerpiece and namesake of the park. This L-shaped lake lays wholly within the borders of the national park. It features a maximum depth of 590 feet (180 m) with an average depth of 364 feet (111 m). It stretches 12 miles (19 km) long with a width of 1.6 miles (2.5 km) creating a surface area of 17.19 square miles (44.51 sq km).
Pudu is a special sighting for the wildlife statisticians serving as the world's smallest deer species. These miniature deer stand from 13 to 17 inches (32 to 44 cm) tall and reach a length of 33 inches (85 cm).
The are reddish-brown to dark-brown which can vary individually changing with the season. The ears are rounded with the gray-brown head featuring black eyes and a black nose.
Lago Puelo National Park Trails
Hiking is one of the more popular activities associated with the national park. Most of the trails are connected with views of the lakes and rivers with some trails featuring elevation gain that delivers views out over the lake.
Sendero Bosque de Las Sombras
This is a 0.5 mile (0.8 km) loop rated easy and features an elevation gain of only 82 feet (24.99 m). This walking trail features views of the lake.
Sendero Faldeo covers a distance of 2.2 miles (3.54 km) with an elevation gain of 1,200 feet (365.8 m). The moderate-rated trail takes you through the forest with views of the beach, wildflowers, and potential wildlife.
Lgao Puelo National Park was established in 1971 to protect the astounding landscapes as well as the rain forest featuring Valdivian flora. It also protects the habitat of the elusive cougar and other wildlife species living with the lucsious rain forest. The pudu is listed as near threatened by the IUCN and falls under the protection of the park.
Lago Puelo Highlights
- Puelo Lake
- Valdivian Flora
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- Alluring World, Lago Puelo National Park, https://www.alluringworld.com/lago-puelo-national-park/, retrieve January 2022
- InterPatagonia, Lago Puelo National Park, https://www.interpatagonia.com/lagopuelo/lago-puelo-national-park.html, retrieved January 2022.
- Patagonia, Lago Puelo National Park, https://www.patagonia.com.ar/Lago+Puelo/107E_Lago+Puelo+National+Park.html, retrieved January 2022.
- Patagonia-Argentina, Lago Puelo National Park, https://www.patagonia-argentina.com/en/lago-puelo-national-park/, retrieved January 2022.