Yesterday was just a boring travel day. Direct flights to remote areas are hard to find, so we had to fly 1.5 hours north to Buenos Aires only to turn around and fly south again to El Calafate.
The city of El Calafate sits on the shore of Lago Argentino, formed 15,000 years ago and is the largest body of water in Argentina.
Hielo & Aventura (Ice and Adventure) Tours took us to the Parque Nacional Los Glaciares where we walked on the Perito Moreno glacier.
The Parque Nacional los Glaciares contains 47 glaciers on the continental ice cap feeding 2 huge lakes.
Unlike most glaciers in the world, Perito Moreno is constantly advancing, so large pieces calve into the massive lake almost all the time (not due to melting, but to moving).
After bus pick-up from our hotel in El Calafate, Sidi drove us about an hour to the park while Dora (the Explorer) talked about the local geography. The first stop was at ‘the balconies’, a series of viewing areas right across the slim channel from the face of the glacier.
After los balcones, it was a quick boat ride across the lagoon where we got very close to the glacier face.
We met our ice guides, Carlos and Veronica. Then we donned heavy metal crampons and helmets and spent about an hour and a half wandering on the surface of the glacier.
Almost at the end of the tour we were given a shot of whiskey on the rocks, using ice that Carlos carved off the glacier!
There are caves in the glacier only occasionally – today we got lucky. This one was formed by water flowing over the huge rock behind us