The End of the World

Trip Start Mar 14, 2004
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Argentina  ,
Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Ushuaia... The Southern Most City in the World!!!!   But just getting here wasn't that easy.  After leaving Puerto Madryn, the journey required three bus changes, two border crossings, and a ferry across the Straight of Magellan, all over the course of about 40 hours.  Ushuaia and Tierra del Fuego National Park are actually on a large island shared by both Argentina and Chile and the highway to get here crosses the borders twice.  It sure felt like a huge waste of time (and space in my passport) to get stamped out of Argentina and into Chile only to stamp out of Chile and back into Argentina two hours later. 

Finally in Ushuaia, I met up with my friend Doug from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, who had already spent a day in town waiting for me to arrive.  The following day, we took a boat tour of the Beagle Channel, named after the ship that Charles Darwin sailed on when he came through here in the 1830's on his way to the Galapagos
The tour was pleasant but Ushuaia is not the pretty little colonial town you find in many places around latin america.  It's just a simple port town with really nothing all that special to look at as far as the architecture is concerned.  But the surrounding mountains and location on the channel make it pretty cool to be here.  The place is growing rapidly and is now host to dozens of cruise ships that head to Antarctica.

On our second day in Ushuaia, we hiked up to Martial Glacier, which appeared to be nothing more than your average snow capped mountain.  Compared to the glaciers we'll visit soon, this was  nothing more than a small block of ice.  Even the hike was not all that difficult... it was pouring down rain when we started so we opted for the chairlift that services a winter ski slope.  Back at Antarctica Hostel, we started making friends and planning for the next day's adventure... exploring Tierra del Fuego by car. 
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