Trekking on Glacier Periot Moreno

A few days ago we had our very first encounter with a very big glacier in PN Torres Del Paine in Chile. Just a couple of days later we are getting up very early again to drive from El Calafate to National Park Los Glacieres (Argentina) ready to start our very first hiking tour on another massive glacier, the famous Perito Moreno on the southern end of the park. It is the only glacier in Argentina (and one of the few world wide) that is not receding but keeping its size since the 1970s.

 

The tour starts at 10:30am from the small harbor close to the end of the glacier and we drive up there with our camper to meet the rest of the group. In 20 minutes we cross the lake, get a short introduction and start a 45 minute hike alongside the glacier to the point where we get on it.

 

Equipped with crampons we start a further 3.5h journey towards the middle part. After a very windy and bad day yesterday we are so lucky. No wind and lots of sunshine makes this an unforgettable experience. On the glacier we see a lot of different elements including small rivers and lakes next to massive ice sculptures. The pictures don’t really pay enough tribute to this beautiful and amazing environment. Therefore we highly recommend you do this yourself.

 

Back on the boat we are offered a whiskey on (glacier) rocks. Of course we can’t say no to this after such a lifetime experience. At the same time this is the “Good Bye drink” together with the Belgiums Pieter and Marit. We met the two the very first time down in Ushuaia on the boat trip to Isla H, then again in National Park Tierra Del Fuego, a couple of times in Chile in NP Torres Del Paine and now we - completely independently - booked the same glacier hiking tour. This is more than just coincidence!

 

Unfortunately it is their last day down south and they take a flight back to Buenos Aires where they are staying another week. So no more chances to meet - at least not on this trip. We stay a few more days in this amazing park.

Visiting the most famous glacier Perito Moreno is only one of many things you can do in PN Los Glacieres. The park itself is huge and Pertio Moreno is on the southern end. Impossible to top this experience we decide to do the glacier boat tour the next day anyway. The weather is by far not as good as we had it for the hiking trip so being on a ship the whole day is not a bad idea. The tour lasts from 10am to about 4pm. On board of a huge catamaran you get shipped to the main three glaciers in the park.

 

The first one we visit is Upsala which is the biggest glacier in Argentina. On our way there we can see quite big icebergs passing by already. While it is the biggest glacier it also calves a lot which means it’s producing lots of icebergs. The main reason why we can't get any closer with this large boat. So we can only see it from a distance.

 

The second is called Spegazzini and has the highest front of more than 120 meters. Something you don’t realize when you approach it. That’s only because you have nothing to compare it with. It is only when you are directly in front of it or like in one of the pictures you see another ship of the same size as ours passing by. It is huge after all.

 

The tour comes to an end by visiting the northern face of Perito Moreno on which we did the ice hiking the previous day.  While this is a great tour and gave us additional views of the glaciers it is very touristic at the same time. The average age on board was probably around 65. Having done the ice hiking yesterday it is not really such an impressive thing for us anymore. In fact, we would recommend to do this tour first and then go hiking on Perito Moreno.

In the park on this end you only have one campsite which is called Lago Roca. By far the most beautifully located and well run site we have seen so far. We stay here for two nights as we really liked it very much. The nearby Lago gives you a perfect setting for a sundowner before dinner. While you can’t see glacier Perito Moreno you can clearly hear the ice breaking in the distance. This is just amazing ...

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