Perito Moreno National Park

ihana.com - big trip - diary - argentina - february 2003

Camping by Lake Burmeister

Landying through the national park

Beautiful scenery

Monday 24 February

We set up camp in some trees by the crystal blue Lake Burmeister, next to the park rangers little aluminium caravan. The 3 doris rangers live here in the park for 2 years at a time, swapping around to man the various campgrounds and administration hut every few months. They obviously like the fresh air and outdoors life because the area is fairly desolate, and with the few tourists who do come arriving in the summer months of January and Feburary.

View of Lake Belgrano from near the top of Cerro Mie

Guanacos

After a quick morning cup of tea the lads decided to hike up the nearest mountain, at 2254m reported to be a 4-5 hour return journey depending on fitness, in other words, five hours for us. Starting out the sun was our friend and even the usual accompanying gale had subsided to a light breeze. As we climbed through marshy lowlands, past an old cattle herders shed the terrain began to become more rocky. As we reached higher altitudes the weather began to deteriorate with the clouds closing in and spots of rain, then sleet wetting the rocks, the normal ferocious wind returning to increase the challenge.

A long rocky climb...

...to the top...

...cold and windy...

...but a wicked view

Its faster to slide down...

...until the snow turns into a stream

Three hours of hard scrambing later we arrived at the snowy summit. We didn't stay there long as the howling wind was so strong it almost blew us off our feet. Going back down was more fun as we could make good time sliding along in the snow. It still took two more hours to get back to the landy, tired and extremly hungry but happy to have conquered our first Andean rock of this trip.

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