Ice Ice Baby

Trip Start Sep 22, 2010
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Trip End Jun 01, 2011


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Flag of Argentina  , Patagonia,
Wednesday, December 8, 2010

With apologies for the title of this blog (Jamesīs idea after a bottle of wine), we have spent the last four nights in El Calafate, the nearest town to the Perito Moreno glacier. The journey here was a complete ball ache (Elīs description) as our bus from Puerto Madryn was over three hours late, we had to change twice on our īdirect serviceī and had another delay after a police search that resulted in the detention of a passenger. This led to us almost missing our connection to El Calafate and it didnīt help that, when we did collect our tickets with minutes to spare, the ticket office did not believe that we had pre-paid, despite our receipt. We did, however, make it to El Calafate as planned. A relief as it avoided a stop over in Rio Galllegos (which even Lonely Planet describes as a dump).

The main purpose of our stay was to see the Perito Moreno glacier which we visited on Tuesday. The glacier is famous for being large, advancing and easily accessible by road (giving it an advantage over some of its bigger neighbours). The visit was fantastic. We started the day by taking a boat trip to the face of the glacier (which rises 60m above water level) and were luckily filming when a huge piece of ice broke off into the water. It made such a loud noise it sounded like a bomb exploding. We then took a bus to some walkways that overlook the glacier. To keep warm whilst waiting for the bus back, we also bought a bottle of the local liquor made from the Calafate berry, which we enjoyed very much. The glacier is one of the most beautiful natural sights we have seen and has been one of the highlights of our trip.

Today we came up to El Chalten at the northern end of Parque Nacional Los Glaciares (Perito Moreno was at the southern end). This is the hiking capital of Argentina, though it snowed today so we might not get that much walking done. Our hostel is fabulous with beautiful views of mountains when the blizzard clears, and they made us a delicious cheese fondue for dinner. 

There is a very slow internet connection here so we are not able to uplaod our photos until we get to Bariloche in about a weeek.

James and El
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