Thursday, June 25, 2009

Torres del Paine

Up and ready before Nate´s new alarm clock had a chance to go off we were picked up before sunrise. When we were dropped off 12hrs later we had spent the entire day being driven around in the backseat of a van. The morning was spent driving through beautiful snow-dusted haciendas and mountain ranges. We made one stop at a big shallow cave that had been carved out by an extinct glacier lake. There was also some ridiculous historical claim that a giant sloth was held captive there as well but I wasn´t buying it. They did let you walk all the way back into the unlit depths though which was neat. We didn´t get to the park until early afternoon and by then the other 2 couples and our tour guide had made fast friends and shared at least 2 rounds of cafe. We sat contently in the back looking out at the countryside while they chatted and laughed. The guide was great and would point out wildlife and stop for photo opts whenever we wanted, probably a benefit of being here in the off season. Though it was a beautiful, sunny day once in the park thee mountains to see were unfortunately hidden in the clouds and didn´t show their face all day. Although this was what I was most excited to see I wasn´t terribly disappointed as the day was really pleasant and everything we were seeing was so beautiful. (You should stop reading and google image this park right now, it´s amazing.) We drove slowly and thoroughly along the only road through the park stopping at a waterfall at the foot of thee mountains and then at this incredible lookout. A Caribbean blue lake was at the foot of thee said unseen mountains with an island in the middle of it. On this island was the Hosteria Pehoe and for $285.00 US you can stay there for a night, and on a clear day & night would be worth every penny - I´m surprised it´s not more expensive. The last stop on the tour was the end of Lago Grey. At the other end of the lago is Glacier Grey and where we stood on the black sandy beach more surreal blue icebergs had floated their way down. Had we not saw the Perito Moreno Glacier a few days before we would have been more in awe. We finally all piled back in the van for the last time and drove home after the sun had set. It took listening to all 4 Rilo Kiley albums to get home where happy and exhausted we crashed and fell asleep.

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