iKamper blog: Episode 14: Argentina tour
This massive country is known for its wide ‘pampas’ grasslands, BA’s sexy tango dance, and more juicy meat parrilladas than you could imagine. The Patagonia region is shared by Chile and Argentina, so we hopped back and forth between the two (8 times actually) snaking around the Andes peaks and chasing the glacier lakes.
Argentina has some incredible beauties that we had to see, including the famous majestic mountain range of Glaciares with the Fitz Roy peak towering over its neighboring village of El Chalten, and Perito Moreno, one of the few glaciers in the world that stays almost in the same place, melting and growing at a similar same rate. Although both wonders are equally impressive in their own way, the journey to visit these two sights were nothing alike. To see the Fitz Roy’s peak, you had to jump over rivers, climb steep hills and hike 24km through Patagonia’s ever changing weather. We spent all day climbing and treking, pull on layers and taking layers off, and filling out water bottles with fresh glacier water streams. Luckly, when we arrived, the clouds parted and the blue sky created a perfect backdrop for the incredible sight. The Perito Moreno, however, is the world’s most touristy glacier, you pay $50 a person and walk straight up to it on a man-made staircase. Although this 3 mile wide glacier was very impressive, you realize how much more you appreciate something when you put blood, sweat and tears into something.
And wow, have we put blood sweat and tears into this journey! After nearly 8 months on the road, we we finally arriving to the most southern city in the continent, Ushuaia. This was it. We were determined to continue camping until the end, which was becoming more of a challenge with Patagoina’s strong winds. A few days before reaching the tip, we drove miles and miles of Pampas until we found a small hill off the side of the road to provide protection from the wind. We situated the rig right by the hill, popped open the Skycamp and clicked the insulation layer into place, more and more grateful for that layer the further south we drive. It was José’s birthday the next day, so I was determined to make him pancakes in the morning. I woke up at the crack of dawn, put on another layer, and started mixing the batter. I lit the propane stove and the wind instantly blew it out. And when I finally had a pancake on the pan, the pan FLEW across the stove and landed in the tall dry grass around me. After hours of juggling flame, pan, and pancake batter, I finally crawled back into the tent with breakfast (brunch by that point) in sleeping-beds.
Patagonia, despite its insane wind, is truly a magical place. A tucked away village sits right up against the mountains unassumingly and little do you know, Antarctica is just a boat ride away. Jose wanted to take me to the famous sign “Ushuaia- the end of the world.” We took a moment to let it sink in. The miles, the flat tires, the potholes, the sacrifices, the decisions, the planning, the navigating, the mountains, the beaches, the locals, the overlanders, the fears, the thrills… man has it been a ride. And just then, he took my hand, looked at me, and got down on one knee. We laughed and cried and exchanged promises to love each other until the end of the world and back.