Founded: August 6, 2014
Area: 372,109 acres
Donated area: 93,900 acres
Ecosystem: Magellanic evergreen forest, mixed scrublands, Navarino peatlands, and Magellanic deciduous forest
Estimated carbon sequestration: 68.51 million metric tons
Location: Magallanes Region
In the Yagán language, this park’s name means “deep bay.” The park stretches from the Beagle Channel to the Darwin Mountain Range, along the 54th parallel south in Chile’s Magallanes Region. Lenga forests, sprawling pampas, rugged coasts, twining rivers, and majestic mountains make this one of the most spectacular places on the Tierra del Fuego island.
In 1998, after hearing about a former cattle ranch in Tierra del Fuego’s extreme south, Douglas and Kristine Tompkins went to explore what was then Yendegaia Estate for the first time. Through a nonprofit organization, Yendegaia Foundation, and with support from other philanthropists, we acquired the property that same year. In 2013, in collaboration with Chilean president Sebastián Piñera, we donated 93,900 acres, which were combined with land donated by the Chilean state to create what is now Yendegaia National Park.
At this time, the park is not accessible via land. The Military Labor Corps and the Ministry of Public Works are currently working on a road that will connect Lake Fagnano and Yendegaia Bay (Caleta 2 de Mayo) via Ruta 7, allowing access to the park. This connection will also make it possible to travel to Tierra del Fuego National Park in Argentina.
Learn more about the history of this park in the Yendegaia National Park book.
Extensive ice fields, glaciers, and snowdrifts suspended above fjords and glaciers make up this national park’s landscape. Here, you can find seven vegetational layers, including tree species such as coigüe, canelo, and lenga, along with peat bogs and various types of moss, lichen, and fungi. For fauna, you can find species like the Tierra del Fuego culpeo fox, the leopard seal, the elephant seal, the Dominican gull, the giant petrel, the thorn-tailed rayadito, the fío-fío (white-crested elaenia), the southern churrín, and the giant woodpecker. The guanaco can be found in the pampas, alongside the tucu-tucu.