Chile | Torres Del Paine – Yet Another Border Crossing

El Calafate is a great place to explore all kinds of sights, from Perito Moreno to the icy plains of Patagonia. It’s also an “easy” hopping off point to the nearby Torres del Paine, though this requires a border crossing with Chile. Given the fame of Torres del Paine’s beauty and pinnacles, it seemed a necessary trip. The easiest method of getting to the park is by signing up for a small group tour; they are sensibly priced and quite convenient – ours even bundled the package with a visit to Los Glaciares National Park. The trip is extremely rural and mostly barren, with a small building complex serving as the immigration stop. Of course, the crossing takes much longer than you think it should… but you will see lots of guanaco and weird birds!

The weather in the park was even more erratic than in El Calafate, producing hail one moment and strong sun rays the next. The park is a popular hiking destination, though it is terrifyingly remote for my tastes. Our group took a less intense little hike to explore the scenic views and a hidden waterfall, though the surrounding peaks were mostly cloud-covered. We are told this is actually quite common, so it may not be a bad idea to make a visit here contingent upon weather.

Even so, the place is dramatic, with unrivalled landscapes of expansive, impossibly blue lakes and jagged, distinctively shaped peaks. Icey rivers and sprawling pampas surround the colossal Southern Patagonian Ice Field.

Countless timid creatures and Candyland-looking bushes fill the scenery, unfolding only for the serenity of the rocky rises. Despite the wealth of treasures, it is the three famous, lofty peaks of the Cordillera del Paine range that the park is named after. (The name “Torres del Paine” translates roughly to “Towers of Blue,” with the term “paine” coming from the Tehuelche Indians.) It was well worth the visit…

(I would like to note that with the completion of this journey, this makes FIVE Argentina-associated border crossings, and one yet to go. P.S. It’s not as fun as you would think.)

 

Comments
One Response to “Chile | Torres Del Paine – Yet Another Border Crossing”
  1. Juan Pablo says:

    Hey great photos and article,
    Maybe you can upload some to wikiexplora.com, specifically to the Torres del Paine article at:
    http://www.wikiexplora.com/index.php/Parque_Nacional_Torres_del_Paine
    Cheers

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