Our final and most spectacular glacier and farm
Our well drilled and very punctual group were filing into the breakfast room by 7am for an only just breakfast before boarding the bus at the required 7.45am for what was expected to be a very long day. Upside the bus was super comfortable so many napped while we made our way to Los Glaciares National Park.
The National Park was a couple hours west of El Calafate we entered the park with first stop at the very well designed and maintained walking tracks which were constructed above the forest floor. We were all feeling a bit glaciered out until we saw the Glaciar Perito Moreno glacier, one word wow!!!
The walking trail provided lots of options for all fitness level, the
most amazing thing about this glacier compared to the countless others we have seen to date is the face we could see back behind the face and view how it was formed. Such a phenomenon was this glacier and the only one in South America that is considered ‘in balance’ recedes 2 metres a day but also form 2 metres a day. After plenty of time to soak up this magical place before coffee break.
After morning tea it was down to the dock to board the boats for the next phase of national park visit, walking on the glacier for some and cruising up to the face for others.
“Once in a life time experience’, ‘took my breath’, ‘like walking in a slushy’, and ‘nice drop of scotch’ were just some of the comments from those walking on the glacier, this was a 4 hour tour and no one thought this was too long, not even Chris Martin, Colin, Peter who just got under the 64 yr old age limit. In fact heard Chris was leading the walkers
The rest of the group (7 of us) boarded our vessel and cruised to the face of the glacier which was spectacular, to be able to watch the ice towers fall up close was amazing. We had ample time at the face and even got to see the rest of the group on top of the glacier.
After our cruise ended we headed back up to the kiosk and walking trails where the groups set about conquering all trails while we waited to collect the others.
At 4pm the other cruise returned with all our walkers on board and home safe without incident. Good thing we are all well adjusted to bus travel by now as it was heads down apart from 3 in the group for the two drive to the Estancia Nibepo Aiken (a former commercial operation that operates as a farm stay now) for a look around, a ride on the retired gaucho horses for some and walking tour for the rest.
No risk of the horses getting away from our experienced riders if they could raise a trot it would have been a miracle. The best part of the ride was the view over the lake from up them mountain and getting to ride in an authentic gaucho saddle.
After the riders returned it was time to have blade shearing demo by Carlos and finished very capably by Don much to the delight of the other visitors to the farm.
Dinner time and given we had seen the whole lambs on the spit while we were having afternoon tea on arrival, our taste buds were tingling. The lamb and sauce was cut up and served on small boxes filled with hot coals to keep it hot. It was very tasty and were all enjoyed getting our teeth into some real meat.
After all it was still Australia day here.
The evening concluded at around 10pm after a few words of thanks to Edwardo and the owner before Colin in true form had come prepared and made some special Aussie awards to members of the group. It was a bit of fun and everyone enjoyed the evening.
We tiredly tumbled back on the bus but not before Don traded his MacWool cap for a Gaucho Boinas/Berets with the cook. The cook was delighted with his MacWool cap as was Edwardo who wore it with pride for the whole evening.
Two plus hours back to town before we almost crawled upstairs and fell into bed, What a luxury late start tomorrow 9am sharp on the bus.
Tomorrow 4 hour bus ride to Rio Gallegos (360kms) with a stop off at a commercial mid sized Estancia before on into town for dinner with the show society and sheep producers. So another memorable day ahead