Our last stop in Argentinian Patagonia was El Chaltén, the closest town to mythical Fitz Roy and a paradise for hikers. On the first day, Alba and I took a shuttle bus to Hostería del Pilar where we started hiking along Río Blanco (8km) with nice views over Glaciar Piedras Blancas.
From Campamento Río Blanco we climbed up to Laguna Los Tres (1km, 500m up), that was hard! But well, once you arrive at la Laguna, the views are so beautiful that you just forget you are tired 🙂
After lunch we walked down to el Campamento and from there we took the Sendero Fitz Roy (10km, 4hrs) back to El Chaltén. This walk offers the closest views to the granite walls of Fitz Roy and its spires and is usually done in the opposite sense so we always had these views on our back. The advantage of doing like this was that we were at the Laguna de los Tres A-LO-NE and only crossed all the hikers on our way down La Laguna.
Back to el Chaltén, my dorm mate Helena proposed me to join her and other mates of the hostel for a pizza and beers night, courtesy of Rodrigo, how could I refuse that! It was a cool night 😀
On the following day, Alba left el Chaltén and I wanted to sleep until late and do nothing during the day but Helena was going to hike up to Loma del Pliegue Tumbado, precisely the hike that I wanted to do the following day so change of plans, I decided to join her. Despite that the slope was higher (1000m up), the hostel’s owner guaranteed us that this hike was easier than the Laguna de los Tres hike because the climbing was continuous so OK let’s go!
We started walking La Loma del Pliegue Tumbado Hike (12km, 4hrs one way) at 11am (!!!). It was very hot and my legs were tired from the previous day. Maybe I preferred La Laguna de Los Tres hike because it was one final (hard= climb while here we were climbing all the time!!
But again, the views from el Mirador (1250m) were stunning, it was worth the effort. From left to right we could see the following peaks:
Doblado (it means “folded”) and Ñato standing alone;
Adela Sur, Adela Central and Adela Norte;
Cerro Torre (the tallest peak in the centre of the picture, 3102m) and Egger, Standhart on its right;
Snowy Saint Exupery, Rafael Juarez and Poincenot, a little bit behind on the picture;
Fitz Roy (3405m) again from another point of view.
When Helena proposed me to go up to the top of la Loma (1375m) I told her to forget it, don’t count on me, the path was very steep! But at the end I felt guilty to leave her alone and I joined her for the final climb . .
The views on the northern side were even more impressive than from el Mirador while if we looked tlo the south we could see las Torres del Paine. Don’t you believe me? Look at my gps then and tell me if I am in Chile or Argentina, lol.
Back to the town, after a good hot shower, we went to celebrate the end of the hike in a nice restaurant, “truchita” for both! It seems that trout is one of the typical dishes in El Chaltén.
With this (more than deserved) dessert full of dulce de leche, eaten in 10 minutes, I guess I recovered all the calories lost during my 8 hours hike . . . cruel world!