The Park will unite the Jeinimeni
National Reserve, Chacabuco Valley,
and Tamango National Reserve
We have this opportunity to work in a singularly strategic location. Not only is Patagonia as a whole a wild ecological treasure, but the future park occupies a particularly significant and critical area of this region. Most of our work to acquire the land for the future park is complete. The future Patagonia National Park will span the Chacabuco Valley and the neighboring Jeinimeini and Tamango Mountains. Spectacularly beautiful, this area presents a unique opportunity to create a new national park in two important ways:
At the transitional zone between the semi-arid Patagonian steppe and temperate beech forests, the future park spans an unusual range of habitats, from grasslands and wetlands to high peaks. This diversity of habitats provides critical room for species to adapt to a changing climate. On a global scale, grasslands are drastically underprotected. Additionally, this area contains contains one of the largest remaining populations of the endangered Huemul deer.
The park protects an area high in biodiversity and an ecosystem underprotected worldwide
CONAF, the Chilean agency in charge of parks, has listed the Chacabuco Valley as a top conservation priority for 30 years due to its biological importance. However, it lacked access to the funds necessary to acquire this privately-owned land outright.
Our conservation plan calls for donating the ~200,000 acres we have acquired in the Chacabuco Valley; Chile will contribute the 460,000 acres currently part of the Jeinimeni and Tamango National Reserves to the future park. Upgrading these areas from National Reserve to National Park will secure a higher degree of protection for the area.
The bulk of our land acquisition came with the 2004 purchase of the 173,000-acre Estancia Valle Chacabuco, formerly one of Chile's largest sheep ranches which was suffering from overgrazing. We have bought several other properties in the subsequent years, all from willing sellers to whom we offered jobs in the future park.