South Bound

Trip Start Sep 30, 2011
Trip End Dec 13, 2011

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Where I stayed
El Ovejero Campground
What I did
Biking with Baft Backpacking FreeTravel
Hiking in El Calafate Hills

Flag of Argentina  , Patagonia,
Friday, September 30, 2011

    Despite some initial resistance from Jessie we traveled to Patagonia and loved it! We took a 20ish hour bus ride from Puerto Madryn to El Calafate.  Contrary to what I had previously thought, Patagonia is not all a land of glaciers and mountains.  About 99% of our bus ride was through flat desert barren except for the occasional upland goose or guanaco heard.  Finally we made it to Calafate, a little touristy town on the edge of a huge glacial lake.  We opted out of a 400 peso tour of the glacier, knowing that we would be going to Torre del Paine in a few days.  Instead we took off into the Calafate Hills for a mini camping trip.  Just outside of town we passed a guy with two dogs...he was friendly enough and his dogs were adorable.  However, about two hours later we realized that the dogs were still following us.  Despite our most valiant efforts we were stuck with the dogs...for two days.  Apparently in Argentina dogs are pretty free to roam, itīs normal for dogs to just take off and hang out with random people for a while.  So we had some traveling buddies, they slept outside our tent, waited for us at the door of the supermarket, pretty much went everywhere with us.  Finally, Jessie and I went in a coffee shop and when we came out the dogs were asleep...we tiptoed past without waking them. We were so relived.  We had been trying to figure out how to take the dogs on a double decker luxury bus when we left Calafate.
    We had a grand time in Calafate.  In addition to our hiking trip with the dogs (where Jessie saw her first Andean Condor!), we rented bikes and went on a little self guided tour of the lake.  It was lovely!  However, we both finished the day very sore.  Riding tiny bikes through sand is a lot harder then it looks.  After two days we arranged our next adventure to the part of Patagonia I was dieing to see.  The part with touring peaks and gorgeous glacial lakes.  Onward to Torre del Paine!!!
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