Our campsite was ultra busy due to the festival and much louder than usual. Combined with the music, the traffic on the adjacent road and the pack of dogs which revelled in chasing and barking at each passing car throughout the night it wasnt the most peaceful night’s sleep for Jon. Luckily Vanessa’s earplugs did the trick :-).
We were pumped for our trip to Perido Moreno national park and its spectacular glacier which we had heard so much about from fellow travelers. We decided to take a break from cycling as we didn’t fancy the 70km each way trip but were shocked by the $450peso charge (approx $45 Australian) per person for the bus, in addition to the $330peso per person entry to the park for non-Argentinians, so we decided to give hitch hiking a go.
Complete with ‘Perido Moreno’ cardboard sign we walked a couple of km to the edge of town and stuck out our thumbs. After approximately 10 minutes, a guy stopped and explained that he was only going 3km but could take us to the best spot from which to hitch, on the main road just outside of town. We accepted his offer. During the 5 minute journey the appropriately named ‘Angel’ explained that he was a teacher of English and an historian working at the ‘Glaciertarium’…we were impressed as we had never heard of a Glaciertarium and thanked him as he dropped us off opposite the entrance to it. His parting comment was that if we had no luck hitching we should pop in as they did great hot drinks.
We stuck our thumbs out again. After only a few minutes a taxi pulled up. The passenger opened the door and offerred to share a ride there and back for $400peso for the 2 of us. Being novice hitchhikers and not exactly broke we decided this was a good deal and took them up on the offer.
Our 2 fellow passengers (Natalia and Vlademir) were from Buenos Aires and needed to get back to
Our driver (name forgotten) was a huge source of information and talked for almost the entire journey there and back (in Spanish) on a whole range of subjects including politics, the escalating price of getting to the glacier, local wildlife etc…some of this went over our heads but we learned some new expletives.
As soon as we saw the glacier wall, from a few km away, our jaws dropped. It continued to get increasingly amazing the closer we got. We spent a good couple of hours walking up and down the length of its face and saw/heard a number of carvings as pieces of it crashed into the water. Someone standing next to us was lucky enough to catch a carving on film and within seconds (thanks to the wonder of ‘air drop’, so had we ;-).
There’s not a great deal more to say about this natural wonder other than to look at the photos in awe. Needless to say that we both had an amazing day and feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to see it.