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Published: October 25th 2019
Up early for a 7.30am departure with Eduardo, our driver from the airport yesterday. We decided on a day trip to El Chaltén, one of the must-see area in this part of Patagonia. It’s over 200km away and a two and a half hour drive, but the journey goes quickly as the road is good and there’s lots to see on the way. As well as the beautiful views of the Patagonian scenery, we are treated to a mini safari of Guanacos (a bit like llamas), ñandúes (rhea - like emus/ostriches), condors, hares and a few horses, cows, pigs and sheep. We skirt the Lago Argentino, do a portion of the N40, then head towards the northern part of Parque Los Glaciares where we see the famous Cerro Fitzroy and glimpse our first glaciers.
The park is a bit like Yosemite in that it is well signposted with lots of treks you can do yourself, so after a stop off at the visitor centre we decide to do the 8km round trip to Lago Capri and Mirador Fitzroy. As the slowest member of the family I set the pace, and don’t want to go too slowly so try to get
a good rhythm going. It’s uphill and after only about 5-10 minutes we have to stop to take off some layers. Then we get going again up and up and up. Glorious views of the Cerro Fitzroy peaks along the way and of the Lago Capri. We have some nice stop offs for snacks and lunch before heading back down. We are up and down in about 3 hours, but Strava says we’ve done over 9km somehow. Quite tiring!
We meet Eduardo, have a coffee stop, then off to find the Chorrillo Salto waterfall by car. It’s only a short 500m each way from the car park. Pretty waterfall and luckily we miss a bus load of tourists who arrive as we are leaving.
Our final challenge is the Mirador de los Cóndores and Mirador de Las Águilas. These two together should be a 4km round trip. More beautiful views at the top and we’re rewarded by a 3 condor flypast at our second stop. We are now getting really tired. We’ve clocked up 16km by the time we finish and over 20,000 steps. Various aches and pains - back, calves, ankles - but we feel achieveful and
look forward to the journey home.
Back home at 6.30 we have a quick beer and a change then need to sort out more food for tomorrow and have decided to get some laundry done. We divide and conquer, then meet up in La Lechuza for supper. Steak gets a night off, so it’s pizza, pasta and risotto instead. As a newly turned pescatarian I’m not blown away by the food
it’s only ok. But I realise that as I’m choosing not to eat meat in the steak capital of the world, I have only myself to blame. At least the Malbec is good 😊.
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