In continuation from last week's travel shot Tuesday, I bring you collage of images of our experience with the majestic Perito Moreno Glacier in El Parque Nacional los Glaciales in Patagonia.
After a week's journey through the Argentinean countryside, which included everything from buses, planes, to buggies and bikes (not to mention a special glacier boat), we finally made it to the main purpose of our Argentinean trip, a glacier trek atop a continually mobile glacial formation spanning 30km (19mi) in length (Fun fact: this glacier is one of the only in the world that is still growing, unlike most other glacial formations, which are melting and shrinking).
The night before we had a hearty Argentinean meal by fireplace with about 20 other backpackers at our hostel. We had purchased a glacier trekking tour that day via Hielo y Aventura (http://www.hieloyaventura.com/). The next morning we headed out for the adventure of a lifetime. Surprisingly, the climate was actually not that cold, a warm fleece would do, and you didn't really even need gloves. Each hiker had put on crampons, which were these special boots with spikes that dig deep into the ice for traction. We departed the mainland via a glacier boat to the side of a mountain, which, after a few minutes of trekking the woods of said mountain, it jutted us out onto the glacier's facade. All of a sudden we were 70 meters above water standing on a gigantic block of ice. Majestic—yes. Life-altering—certainly.
It was one of the most breathtaking views I'd ever seen in my life, in fact, it may still be to this day (and I've seen my fair share of natural wonders). The finale of the 2+ hour trek found us in a little dug out inlet in the middle of nowhere atop this ice sheet, where we were served whiskey on ice from the glacier (natch).
The smell was unique and surprisingly, easily describable. Clean. Fresh. Crisp. Polar. The smell of Patagonia, the freshest air I'd ever smelled.