Heading South

Things are coming together. I stopped in to this internet cafe to check out some hostel information; figured I may as well send you a quick update. I booked a trip down south, via Ruta 40. Route 40 is a road that parallels the andes on the Argentinean side, and the only way to reach the town of El Chalten (home to Fitz Roy) from the north without horrendous layovers, backtracking, and all sorts of frustrating travel epics.

The trip is costing me $143…which is a sore hit to the budget but still the least expensive option – it was between backtracking to Puerto Montt to take a direct bus to Natales, flying, or taking a bus by the coast of Argentina and then inland once south. All cost more, and none were as appealing as this road.

Tomorrow I´ll hang out here in Bariloche…maybe go for a hike in the mountains and then return to the hostel for a big asada, barbeque, in the evening. My van leaves for Perito Moreno at 6am on Sunday, we spend the night there, in a bump of a town. From there the road is sometimes paved and sometimes dirt. There is no regular public transportation there; the private company that runs the van I am taking is the only way to get there except for renting a car and driving yourself. We leave Perito Moreno the following day, arrive in El Chalten, spend a night and day, and I leave the next night for El Calafate. From there it is a short busride to Puerto Natales, my home base for the next three months.

I doubt you´ll hear from me again until Puerto Natales….I´ll regale you then with tales of a long dusty ripio road, wind that never stops, and granite spires like nowhere else in the world.

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