Oh boy! Hiking in the shadow of Mount Fitz Roy
Trip Start Feb 26, 2010
371Trip End Feb 26, 2011
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Where I stayed
Pioneros Del Valle Hostel
The bus stopped at the park headquarters but instead of stopping we were put in a room and given a talk by one of the park rangers. The guy was fantastic, talking about safety and were most injuries occur. He also covered the rules of the park but in a context of “how you can help” it was quite obvious stuff but it was put across really well. The most amusing bit was about the wildlife of the park, they are trying to keep the town dogs out of the park so if a dog befriends you and tries to follow you leaving town simply shout at it and if it doesn’t go then throw rocks at it, this was dead serious, at first I thought he was joking but he wasn’t there are endangered species here which the dogs will try and kill. We then got onto the subject of Puma’s, if you are lucky enough to see one, enjoy the experience it is likely it will run off when it sees you, if it does approach you, make yourself look big and start shouting, if it doesn’t back away, you guessed it, pick up rocks and throw them at it (do not turn your back and run) then go back to the park headquarters afterwards and report your sighting
The trek was pretty awesome but having probably already walked about 5km with the rucksacks in El Calafate and El Chalten getting on and off the busses we started to feel the pain before we got to the main climb, I was trying to push us on as it was getting so late. The views on the way were spectacular and the views of the mountains were incredible, we realised just how lucky we were to have such a clear and unwind day. (Erica edit: Standing at the top looking out over the valley and then up at the top of Mount Fitz Roy, one of the world’s most difficult mountain climbs (we were not attempting that even though Andrew insists that he is an amazing rock climber, I am yet to see evidence of this though) it really was awesome and worth the exhausting climb). We got back to the hostel at about 20:30 quite frankly we were knackered. We didn’t even bother with tea, managing a quick shower and straight to sleep, perhaps this was the walk or perhaps just the fact we only had a few hours sleep the night before wine and beer as well, perfect preparation to walk about 16 miles! Our six bed dorm only had one other person in there an Israeli guy whom when we ‘hola’d’ him suggested we never do that again as he doesn’t speak Spanish, I don’t think we spoke to him again, but we heard him having a poo in the middle of the night which was a nice treat. En-suite dorm rooms really don’t do it for us - I mean what is the point? It’s just gross!