Published: April 7th 2009April 6th 2009
The bus from Puerto Madryn left on time, I man came onboard in Trelew and snored like a pig, did not get to sleep well and worse my seat was next to the toilet people coming in and out all the time. In Esquel the next day the man got off and finally slept well for the next 5 hours drive, seen some spectacular scenery but could not be bothered enjoying it really, too tired and exhausted. Very cold in Bariloche when we arrived at the bus station, gloomy but the clouds dissipated a bit and we saw the sun for sometime. There was a porter handing out our backpacks and he wanted me to tip him, I ignored him and pretend not to understand him, all he did is hand me my pack why should I tip him. Took a taxi and got dropped off at the center of town where the hostel is at the 10th floor of the tallest bldg. in town, I had my hesitations at first the bldg looks like a Soviet type bldg but once I got inside the hostel i realized why this is so popular, fantastic 360 view of the city and the
Nahuel Huapi lake and the mountains. Total chaos in the hostel as they were trying to clean the carpets as well, I got checked in to my dorm and Barrett my roomie from Seattle is still in bed at 11am. a fisherman, he leads fishing trips here in Patagonia and other regions of Argentina and Chile, interesting dude he is probably in his late twenties and gave me heaps of info on fishing the lakes and rivers f this region.
Went for a walk to town and found my way towards the Chocolate museum but is shut so just took photos to show my chocolate loving friends. The scenery is great, sun occasionally peeking from the clouds, the lake is stunning, i can imagine it when it is quite sunny. I saw a Dragoman truck on the corner of my eye as I walk on the side of the paved road, too late for photos. Walked back to hostel and met my other roomie, 2 nice German girls and Dutch dudes that i became close to right away,the Dutch people are perhaps the friendliest backpackers I have meet, easy to get along with and very laid back. These 2
Dutch dudes have interesting ethnic background, Soroush is Iranian and Anas an Iraqi, but they are best of friends it seems, they got along very well like brothers and they took me in and hang out with me for the little time we are together in the hostel. We decided to hike together the next day to the Cerro Campanario and the Chico Circuit. An American dude, Eric asked us if we want to hike with him to the Arrayanes parque where they have those nice looking trees, rain or shine, we were chatting about until past midnite and before bed we decided to wake each other up around 8am and the bus for the Parque leaves at 9am. The next day at 1030am Anas and I woke up, no Eric, the poor lad did the trek himself and did not want to wake us up as we all are sleeping like a baby. We found out later he walked the trail in the rain and qabour 6 inches of water on the trail, he hiked with a french girl he met along the way but could not understand her as she only speaks french, so he had an awkward
6 hour hike, saying si, si to her all the time she talks in French to him, just to pretend to make a conversation.
Meanwhile we decided since Eric left us we hiked the Cerro Campania where they have the chairlifts up the mirador but we decided to hike up, a bit steeep but only took 30 minutes, huffing and puffing, sweaty and wet from the rain we sat inside the restaurant at the mirador a good 3 hours chatting and having some really good empanadas. The boys and I made a deal to see each other again in the future either in Boston, Iran or Holland and continue travelling together again.
It was quite cold and raining hard so we decided to take the chairlift back down, it was very slow and i got soaked despite the "capote" rain gear they provide for you. We waited for the bus at the bottom of the lift and made it back to the centre around 5pm. Anas and I shopped for dinner and bought steak!! We made dinner while Soroush rests in his bed apparently sick, well actually he was and is still coughing badly, so we let him rest
while me and Anas whipped up a storm in the busy kithcen, the kitchen here is superb, 3 different stove counters. We made soups, palmito salad, mashed potato and of course medium rare steak.
After dinner Mark an Israeli friend of the two Dutch dudes came and entertained us for a bit, quite a funny dude he showed us a photo of him on facebook posed naked sat on a rock with boots on one of the treks he did alone, we did not see his bits thank god, it was artistically done, but made us all laugh when he told his story behind the pose, he was hiking and got so hot he took off his shirt, then realizing he was alone he took off his pants as well, voyeurism kicked in and started taking fotos of himself sin clothes. He walked a bit naked and slipped and fell on his ass, his clothes went back right on from then on. We met him that night at a bar, my first night out in Argentina!! We met Ran at the bar, my Israeli friend from BA and his Israeli friends but they spent most of the time trying
THE BLDG, WHERE THE 1004 HOSTEL IS LOCATED, 10TH FLR.
to pick up girls so we left them alone. Went back to the hostel and Soroush was already sleeping.
Next morning the alarm came off at 745am , we were supposed to bike the Circuito Chico, but I was so tired I begged off and left Mark and Anas to do it by themselves. i slept in abit and sorted my things, dropped clothes for laundry and went to Chalten travel to book my trip to El Chalten. then Decided to walk the circuit alone. the bus ride was 40 minutes and started raining the closer we got to the park, it was windy too but got better as i started the hike. Throughout the day though it was spitting but not so bad, 3 Americans behind me were chattering about quite loudly and annoyingly so i tried to walk fast to be ahead of them. I saw a trail to my left that goes to the Arrayanes trees so i made a left turn, good thing the Americans did not follow. great trail, lots of bamboo trees and a bit part the Arrayanes trees, about an hour or so later i got to the end of the trail
and got out near the road, as I walk i saw the trail to the Tacul beach so i followed it but asked the tour info place before to be sure the trail is open, this one was also good and you get to see a nice lake Escondido, the view i can imagine would be spectacular if the sun was out.
Got lost a bit on the way out I followed the road but went the long way so went back and tried to walk where i got dropped off by the bus, 1 1/2 hours later i arrived there raining hard again and my feet really hurts from almost 5 1/2 hours walking. Relieved the bus pulled up I fell asleep a bit, then when we got to the Campanario stop the Israelis came on board like 20 of them!! including Ran my friend and the boys we met last nite, The Israeli are here in massive amounts to celebrate Passover here in Bariloche, apparently they cannot travel for 2 days during this holiday season. They are everywhere and I try not to mingle with them as i cant speak their language and they tend to be
clicky. Got back to the hostel starving so i literally ran to the supermarket and bought chorizos. I cooked it right away and Javier told me next time cook it in cheap white wine than frying it. I was so stuffed i cant finish my meal so i gave it to Eric. He inhaled the whole thing in 5 minutes!! Quite funny American, they went fishing today with my ex roomie Barret and they caught only a small fish about the size of a palm! on a river where they said lots of big fish abound.
This morning when I dropped off my laundry I accidentally picked up the wrong plastic bag, my roomates good thing I had realized it before i left to do the trek otherwise i paid for my roomie's laundry and will have dirty clothes the next week.
There are more photos below