Torres Del Paine--Day 4: Refugio Grey

Trip Start Dec 15, 2009
Trip End Jan 01, 2010

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Flag of Chile  , Patagonia,
Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Today was the last leg of the W. We hiked up to Grey Glacier, taking our time because the map said it was a short walk and we usually walk faster than the times listed. This time, though, it took us over an hour longer, as we climbed and dropped over the contour lines on the map. There was a lot to see, with blue, blue icebergs floating in the lake as we walked by. 

A big surprise was running into Erin McManus, one of Sidney´s advisors from school, who was hiking the W with her husband Mike. We knew she was out here somewhere and had wondered if and when we would see her. We ran into them on the windiest part of the trail and stopped to talk for 20 minutes, our jackets flapping in the wind.

Although the refugio here was the least appealing of all of them, the glacier didn´t disappoint. HUGE icebergs floated nearby. The glacier is enourmous with a huge land mass splitting it at the face. The landscape is so harsh looking. Vegetation hugs the rocks; looking up at the rock faces of the crags makes us wonder what must have been like for the first alpine climbers to make their ascents. 

We also are sure Peter Jackson must have considered Chile as a shooting location for Lord of the Rings--it certainly looks like it could be Middle Earth. But we know why he chose New Zealand. This Park is very remote, and then of course there's the language barrier.

We'll retrace our steps tomorrow to end the W.
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