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Lakes and Steaks!

San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina

Nursing blisters and sore muscles we made our way to San Martin de los Andes in Argentina. The bus ride passed through some amazing scenery and past the mighty Volcan Lanin (3774m). The going was slow as we had to do all the usual stops at the border for passport and visa checks. However, we were quite happy to just sit, rest and take in the views.

We rented a gorgeous wooden cabana for only $36 a night with a warming open fire and to Chris´excitement our very own BBQ for all those steaks. We only did one hike in this area of the region as we needed to let Chris´blisters heal. The hike was only meant to be a short one, being 10km, but we decided to take a detour as indicated on the local map as being 14km total. It ended up being 26km - so much for resting those blisters!!

We had planned to ride along the Siete Lagos Ruta (Seven Lakes Route) to Villa La Angostura but changed our minds when we found out that the road is being resurfaced and the weather was turning for the worst. So we ended up hiring a car, which turned out to be fantastic, as we were really able to explore all the different areas. We drove to Lanin National Park skirting Lago Huechulafquen where we saw a bird (don´t know the type) catch a fish right in front of us.

After a few days of enjoying lots of steak and sampling many Mendoza Malbecs we departed San Martin and drove along the Siete Lagos Ruta to Villa La Angostura. There is a good reason why this drive is world famous. The scenery is truly spectacular. After seeing the condition of the road and having to take a 100km detour (as part of the road was closed - no signs by the way) we were even more pleased with our decision not to bike ride.

Villa La Angostura is a picturesque town on the shores of Lago Nahuel Huapi. Once again we hired a lovely cabana with views of the mountains and spent a few days exploring the area. We did two hikes, the first to a mirador and waterfall and the second along the peninsula which forms the Arrayanes National Park (a park within Park National Nahuel Huapi). A mouth full we know.

Next stop was Bariloche, situated on the opposite side of the lake to Villa. We made our way to the National Parks office to find out which walks were open and hopefully free of snow. They told Chris they didn´t recommend us going into the park as the weather was unpredictable. Not content with this we went to Club Andino (the parks hiking specialists). They let us know of a number of hikes we could do which would take in very nice views. They said just go as far as the snow line. Perfect!

The hike that we did is part of the Nahuel Huapi Traverse ( a four day hike which we really wanted to do but couldn´t because of the snow). Not to worry as we got amazing views and had a lot of fun hiking in the snow!! Other people were doing it - honestly!

We thought we couldn´t come to this area without checking out Mt Tronador. Tronador is Spanish for thunder. It is named this because of the noise which is made from huge chunks of ice and snow breaking off the glacier. We spent about 15 mins there and in this time we saw this happen twice. We couldn´t believe how loud it was. What is also interesting about this mountain is its 3 peaks. One is in Chile, one is in Argentina and the third is international.

Unfortunately the weather closed in and we were unable to do the other hike we had planned to do. We had to expect this though being in Patagonia at this time of the year.

We are so excited as we are now heading to Southern Patagonia. First stop is Puerto Montt where we board our 3 night ferry journey to Puerto Natales through the Chilean fiords. Brrr!

Hope you are all well. Look forward to hearing from you.

Love C & C xx

permalink written by  chrishoorweg on November 17, 2007 from San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina
from the travel blog: and one last trip before we come home.........?
tagged LakesDistrict

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simply stunning! I think we definately have to go back and head South!


permalink written by  Cath Collins on November 18, 2007

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