Argentina Wrap-Up: Vistas Galore!!!

So, after our few nights in El Calafate (in all it’s glacier & horsey splendor!), we shipped out to El Chalten (via bus) early one morning. I wish I had taken a picture of our walk to the bus station from our hostel because the pre-dawn sky & the early morning bird sounds were all eerily reminiscent of Connor’s & my high school morning commutes…

Anyway, a few hours later, we were pulling into the super tiny town of El Chalten.

We had a lovely view of the mountains surrounding the town.

We had a lovely view of the mountains surrounding the town just outside the visitor center.

After a quick info session from the park rangers (basically telling us the rules of the park & about the trails & how long each of them would take & what hazards we could expect), we quickly found our hostel and unloaded our bags before setting off on a few warm-up hikes πŸ˜€

Setting out on the Mirador Condor trail

Setting out on the Mirador Condor trail – it was a little chilly…

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Connor sitting atop the Condor trail lookout

Connor sitting atop the Condor trail lookout

Even spotted a condor!

Even spotted a condor!

Continuing on to the next lookout trail...

Continuing on to the next lookout trail…

Made it!

Made it!

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Then we climbed a little higher.

Then we climbed a little higher.

Connor snagged a pic of some large rocks

Connor snagged a pic of some large rocks

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On our way back, we found a little haunted forest-looking area nestled off to the side of the trail...

On our way back, we found a little haunted forest-looking area nestled off to the side of the trail…

So we settled in there for a bit and enjoyed the peace and quiet :D

So we settled in there for a bit and enjoyed the peace and quiet πŸ˜€

Our first evening in El Chalten, we succeeded in eating a real-deal Argentinian dinner. The first obstacle was finding a restaurant that was even open. I guess the trekking season doesn’t really start for another couple weeks, so most places were still in their refurbishing stages from the off-season. Anyway, we found a lovely little restaurant who took very good care of us πŸ˜€

I enjoyed their decor - especially the Guinness-esque beer poster for the local Argentinian Quilmes beer :D

I enjoyed their decor – especially the Guinness-esque beer poster for the local Argentinian Quilmes beer πŸ˜€

Excellent little rolls with salsa!

Excellent little rolls with salsa!

Lovin' us some Malbec!

Lovin’ us some Malbec!

Yay for a real meal out at a real restaurant! (And actually making it past 7pm to eat dinner!)

Yay for a real meal out at a real restaurant! (And actually making it past 7pm to eat dinner!)

The next morning, we got ourselves geared up (mentally & physically) for the 6+ hour hike ahead of us – to Cerro Fitz Roy (a.k.a. the king-ding-a-ling of mountains in El Chalten!) And let me tell you, it was no easy chore! It was long and trying, but the views were well worth it πŸ˜€

At the first official Cerro Fitz Roy lookout

At the first official Cerro Fitz Roy lookout

The temperature changes were incredible! I was sweating & down to only 2 layers on the first 1 hour or so. Clearly, by this point, I was freezing!

The temperature changes were incredible! I was sweating & down to only 2 layers on the first 1 hour or so. Clearly, by this point, I was freezing!

Hiding.

Hiding.

Connor: "up and up and up..."

Connor: “up and up and up…”

Gorgeous!

Gorgeous!

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Fearless woodpecker - didn't even flinch as we approached it!

Fearless woodpecker – didn’t even flinch as we approached it!

Finally on our way down...

Finally on our way down…

Only about an hour more to go!

Only about an hour more to go!

The next and final morning in El Chalten, Connor did a little mountain biking:

IMG_2517… and yup, we did some more hiking!

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Mirador de Cerro Torre

Mirador de Cerro Torre

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Yay, we successfully made it back to town! I was a little worried after I agreed to take Connor's sketchy "alternate" route back from the viewpoint...

Yay, we successfully made it back to town! I was a little worried after I agreed to take Connor’s sketchy “alternate” route back from the viewpoint…

Post-hike treats!

Post-hike treats!

Malbec, gnocchi, & butternut squash soup!

Malbec, gnocchi, & butternut squash soup!

After a quick night back in El Calafate, we got up bright and early the next day to head to Chile for Torres del Paine National Park! We were a little worn out from our previous 3 days of hiking in El Chalten, but the views were still excellent!

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We actually saw 3 avalanches in approximately 30 minutes!!

We actually saw 3 avalanches in approximately 30 minutes!!

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Wow.

Wow.

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After our long day touring around Torres del Paine, we were shuttled to Puerto Natales where we checked into our hostel & quickly set out in search of a dinner spot. We were both famished, so when we came upon the family-run local Chilean restaurant right near our hostel, we were thrilled πŸ˜€

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The next day we were back in El Calafate and finally made it to the hippie, veggie-friendly restaurant we’d been wanting to try since our first day there.

Oddly enough, I ordered the lamb pot-pie :P It was delicious!

Oddly enough, I ordered the lamb pot-pie πŸ˜› It was delicious!

And to celebrate our 2 year wedding anniversary, we hit up an incredible divey burger joint in Buenos Aires πŸ˜€

Cheers to us :D

Cheers to us πŸ˜€

To be fair, we actually had a fairly nice anniversary lunch earlier that day, but we botched up the pictures :/ In general, though, we jumped on the foodie bandwagon after getting back from all the hiking in Patagonia and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves! Argentina far exceeded my expectations, and I can’t wait to return for another visit πŸ˜€

 

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One Response to Argentina Wrap-Up: Vistas Galore!!!

  1. Nancy says:

    Vistas Galore! You weren’t kidding! Beautiful pics …Argentina is higher on the bucket list. We’re glad to have you home!

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