Monday, January 11, 2010

2 noteworthy treks!


One beautiful sunny day in Northern Patagonia, Randy, Matias, Sarah and I piled our packs into the magical galaxy and took off towards Pampa Linda. Paved roads fell into gravel as we pulled off Route 40. Upon arrival, Mount Tronador gave us a rare, cloudless smile and posed as we took our before-the-trek picture.

Through the river and over the woods we went. The water was cold and the sun was hot and I struggled to identify countless plant species.

Up up up. Then got lost through the swamplicated lowlands snuggled between two mountains.

5-6 hours later we arrive to a mosquitoed welcome at Laguna Ilon. Between slapping mosquitos we looked around.

Tronador peaked at us from behind a smaller, less intimidating mountain.

Randy and I put on every layer we had, not because it was hot, but rather to save ourselves from the mosquitos. Soon a fire was crackling and I set my sneakers to dry. We took turns standing in the smoke to briefly free ourselves from the mosquitos.

Dinner was donated to us by a nice portena couple. Night was spent on the sandy beach around the fire. The two bottles of wine were gone before the stars filled the sky. Sarah and Randy missed the spectacular blinding moonrise.

Mirador del Doctor was on the agenda for the next day. Oatmeal has never tasted so good as we stoked the fire back into life. My frisbe skills need a little work, but the water didn't feel so bad. Hike hike hike. Up down up down. Suddenly the view opened up! What a spectacular view!

We were all in jaw-dropped awe at the blue blue blue waters, green forests, striking grey mountains, and picturesque sky. Three Andean Condors flew overhead when Randy struck his "dead trekker" pose. Lunch was simple and delicious.

I looked over the mountains, calculating west, and waved hello to Nate wishing him all the best.

Before we left I did my best to attempt a videoblog in Nate's honor.

Slapping mosquitos we hiked back to the camp, took down the tents, and headed out. The trail was easier, especially the swamp, now that we were more or less oriented. Down down down. Stopped to squish a llao llao or admire a flower. Down down down. Crossed the river again. Whew. We made it and had a fantastic time!


A few days later, a Seattlite named Wes called me up. Destination, Cerro Lopez. The number 10 Colonia Suiza bus took us to the very populated trail head. Lots of school kids from BsAs taking up a lot of room. We skirted by them and found the trail. UP up up. Steep trail meant awesome view. We stopped for some photos.

Ran into a nice couple 4 times and stopped to chat (unbeknownst to me at the time I would run into the same gentleman at Matias's grandmother's house a few days later. the world is a hankerchief). A mere 1 hour 40 minutes later, we were dodging families and arrived to the refugio.

Lunch of the gringo variety. Attempted to summit the olla, but came back down prematurely for stomach reasons. Found a slackline. Slacklined on top of Cerro Lopez!

We took the road less traveled down and arrived in a little over an hour. Beer at the bottom and almost missed our bus back into town.


El Chalten, El Calafate, 4 Refugios in Bariloche


Tomorrow, weather permitting, I start my great SouthAmerican recorrida. I'm very excited for a great number of reasons. I will update the blog when possible, but I am without a computer, so the posts may get shorter (horray, you are all thinking!). I've had an amazing time here in Bariloche and I almost don't want to leave, but the travel bug has bitten and so I'm off! Chau!

1 comment:

N8 said...

Nice video blog! Glad you got a bunch of treks in and use of your sleeping bag and tent; makes me happy to see ya! Nice hair, babe! Looking spicy shaap :)