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Torres del Paine - Parque Nacional Torres del Paine

Chile (Puerto Natales) 2005-11-18

¬°Hola Amigos!

The bus from El Calafate to Puerto Natales, in Chile, took about six hours, incl. one hour at the borders!!!

The View from the bus is Pampas, Pampas and Pampas and some sheep, horses, cows and birds. Pto Natales is a fishing village in the south of Chile just close to South Pacific. We had some very good fish and spider crab to eat accompaigned by Chilean wine. We will stay three days in the national park of Torres del Paine, started with a full day buss tour around the park. There are a lot of Guancos-families, the Ranger says about 4.200. And some Pumas too, but they are very shy and they are mostly hunting during the nights. But they are increasing! Now about 60 of them in the park. The weather is cloudy but good and we see the "Hornes" and "Towers" (Cuerno and Torres del Paine) clearly!! Breathtaking!!

The bus stopped at a place were we to the left can see a very blue lake, Lago Sarmiento and to the right a very green lake, Lago Nordenskjöld, amazing!! Lago Nordenskjöld is named after a famous Swedish scientist, Otto Nordenskjöld who was here about hundred years ago. Between Lago Nordensjköld and Lago Pehoe there is a waterfall, called "Salto Grande" that means "Big waterfall"....but I don’t know......after visiting Foz de Iguassu.......but it was nice! We also visited Lago Grey, a (as the name says) greycoloured lake beginning with Glacier Grey and in the other end a sandy beach full of icebergs!!!! This looks strange!!! Vamos a la playa!!

At bout 6:30 pm the tour is finished and they let us out with our BIG backpacks at a hostel, so we thought that this was our home for two nights, BUT it was not!! Albergue Chileno (our hostel) is two and a half hours hiking up in the mountains from were we where!!! This is not funny, especially not when You are not informed about this "evening walk" and are hungry, tired and carrying a big Rucksack!!!

We started to walk and finally at about half past nine we reach our hostel!!! YIPPI!!!! The ascent was more than 500 meter! Most of the guests were already sleeping or on their way to bed and they have served dinner at 7 pm!! but they were nice to us and made us a late dinner and together will a bottle of wine we felt good. Do I have to say that we slept well!!!! The view of the Torres after a couple of hours hiking up the mountain. No pain - no gain. Click to enlarge.The next morning we had a very good breakfast and were the last to leave the hostel for a hike to the Torres del Paine. The View was great, the weather was good as this time and we had our lunchbox just below the Torres and close to a very turquoise lake! But Timing is everything after ten minutes it was very cloudy and we couldn’t see the top of the "Torres" any more. We spend the late afternoon in the "dining room" at the hostel reading books and talked to a lot of people from all around the world, even some Swedes! The first time we heard Swedish since Brazil!

Day number three we walked down in the hard wind to the camp and as we expected the bus leaved earlier than what it says on the voucher.......I am glad that we are used travelers.

We spent yesterday in a bus to Punta Arenas, even more south in Chile, had some lunch, visited a museum and were writing in the Travel book and went back again. Not that interesting! Today, or right at this moment we are waiting in El Calafate for our flight back to Buenos Aires, Tomorrow we are invited to an Asado with our Argentineans friends Mariel and Roberto at their salingclub. Looking forward to! But first we have to wash ALL our clothes; they have turned into a dark beige color......

Big hugs from EvAnders