Published: December 6th 2007December 3rd 2007
Last Wednesday we crossed the border from Chile to Argentina, the last country on our trip. We are both looking forward to the delights it has to offer (including steak, wine, and Tango dancing lessons*).
Our bus took us to a lovely little touristy town named El Calafate, on the shore of Lake Argentina, via a visit to one of the more well-known of the glaciers in the area, Perito Moreno. We expected the glacier to be an amazing sight, having seen photos and read our guidebook, and we weren't disappointed - it was a totally amazing sight.
The front of the glacier is 3 miles wide, it is 18 miles long, 70 metres high, and goes underwater to 550 metres in parts. That's a fair sized chunk of ice! And, it's getting bigger; it's the only glacier in these parts that is growing in size (due to some meteorological phenomenen that we can't remember). Bridget wanted to break a chunk off to drop in her G&T but wasn't allowed. Every few minutes a chunk of it drops off into the lake, making a rifle-crack sound as is does so that reverberates around the lake.
It's just such
an unusual sight for us folk from Leicestershire to see. Neither of us have seen anything like it before. We have seen beautiful beaches, lakes, mountains, canyons, etc, but nothing like this.
We did another day trip from El Calafate, on a boat that took us to two more glaciers (Upsala and Spegazzini). The weather wasn't as good as at Perito Moreno - it was raining and grey for most of the day - but we still got great close-up views of both glaciers. Just as interesting on this boat trip were the huge icebergs that we sailed past (and often between). Some were a whitey-grey colour, some beautiful shades of light blue. Some looked dirty, which was rock sediment that the ice had carried with it. If you don't already know, you will be fascinated to learn that only 15% of an iceberg is visible above the water. We know this because the guide told us.
That's enough waffle from us, have a look at the pics.
Bye for now!
Jez and Bridge
* Only Bridget is looking forward to Tango dancing lessons. Jez, as anyone who has seen him
dance will tell you, should be forbidden by law to dance publicly. See "Colca Canyon" blog entry for proof.
Half of the Moreno glacier.
To give an idea of the size, the boat in the other photo is circled on the right hand side of the picture.
There are more photos below