El Calafate is a small town in the middle of nowhere. Basically. I liked it, there is a main street with nice bars and restaurants and shops. I tried some Patagonian wine which was very nice, too. Went running, walked around, got food – just did normal things…
The main reason for everybody to visit though is not the town itself, but the Glacier Perito Moreno. It’s massive, blue and terminates into a lake. Really pretty to look at and watch little or big pieces fall off with a thundering noise. It is one of the few glaciers that don’t retreat but is regarded as stable.
Even better then looking at it is walking around on it. Putting on the crampons and off we went, over small crevasses and waterholes (in one of them was a phone pretty deep down…). It was a pretty cool hike and in the end they served us whiskey on the rocks with glacier ice.
After Calafate I took the bus back into Chile, to Puerto Natales where I am right now. The ride was ok, the bus was filled with tons of elderly European and American tourists and me. The border crossing has been annoying and took two hours in total. A nightmare for someone who is used to German efficiency :)a
The weather here in Puerto Natales hasn’t been the best here so far but I still like this small town by the lake. I’m also happy to be back in Chile, I just like that country a lot and will surely go back to see more of it. The day I spent organizing things for my long hike that starts tomorrow in the Torres del Paine National Park. I walked around, got some food (I am always scared I might starve if I don’t have tons of emergency food on hikes), checked out some outdoor stores, tried some Pisco Sour (famous drink here) while reading up on the latest news in the marijuana scene… Yes, there were lots of magazines only about that famous plant in the café I went to and I used it to improve my Spanish reading and translating skills. I also took a lot of pictures of all those lovely dogs in town – los perros de Puerto Natales….
This time I chose to book a cheap, small hostel and I did meet a lot of people – also lots of Germans. All really friendly and nice to hang out with in the evenings. Some of them are from the Rheingau area (close to where I am from) and their parents use the software I supported at my old job, so yay, I did get to talk about LandCAD here in southern Chile, very close to the end of the world.
Tomorrow I’ll be off to hike for 5 days. The weather will probably be mixed, I well prepared, but hope it won’t get too wet. I won’t have any internet (that will be the worst) and you will hear from me again after Sunday…