Photographic guiding in Los Glaciers National Park 2017

Photographic guiding in Los Glaciers National Park 2017

A few weeks ago I posted a blog report stating that any photographic workshop here in Los Glaciers required a permit. I’ve discussed this in detail with the head park ranger Alejandro Caparros. In the last few days, Alejandro has discussed the regulations with the governors of Argentina’s national park system. Therefore what I write here is the most up to date information available and is written with Alejandro’s permission.

In my last post, I stipulated that workshops required a permit as well as a local guide. This would be the case if a group was being taught photography; essentially any teaching activity requires a permit, as long as you’re not teaching within the park you can do so freely providing you have a local guide. Getting the park to define teaching isn’t easy, but in all honesty, I don’t think any workshops need to worry, as long as a workshop guide isn’t actually sitting clients down with pens, pencils, and notebooks there shouldn’t be a problem. There is, of course, no problem with teaching back in your hotel.

If a guide did intend teaching in the park there are a great many hoops. The guide would have to provide proof of insurance for each member of the party. This insurance would have to be one singular policy covering the group.

Proof of 3rd party insurance would also have to be provided to cover in case of accidental damage, an example being if a client caused a fire.

A permit to teach must be applied for at least 90 days in advance.

All workshops will be required to have a local guide; there are a number of companies in El Chalten. One of the more popular is Fitz Roy Expeditions:

It should be remembered that local guides are NOT PERMITTED to take clients off the trail.

I also spoke with Alejandro about the commercial use of images taken in the park. The Rangers have always insisted that photographic images taken within the park cannot be commercially used in any way. They’re now beginning to appreciate the difference between a big pro commercial photographer and a keen amateur potentially selling a few prints online.

Park Entrance Fee

Finally, the biggest change for most visitors will be the introduction of a park entrance fee. This has been talked about for years, however, it’s now looking like it will be introduced, potentially as early as September of this year.

The park is looking for a non-governmental organization to take over collecting the fees. The fee is expected to be 150 pesos for a single day and 300 for a three-day period. At present, there’s no word of longer permit.

Climbers are expected to be charged triple, with fees funding more rescue services. There is, however, no talk of rescue helicopters.

There’s no talk of creating a locking entrance gate, so photographers will have no problems accessing the park before sunrise providing they purchased their permits in advance.

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