Author: Kali

During our walk on the trails of the Glaziers Park, I lost my wet bag that contained my eating utensils, beanie, headphones and gloves. When I went back to get it, it wasn’t there, neither in the lost property. I was so unhappy. I knew there were some serious consequences waiting for me, not only in my bowl of soup, but on the tip of Mount Fitzroy.

How do you eat soup with a fork? Really, I’ve tried it: it’s hard! And when other guests at the hostel enter the kitchen area and see you scooping up your soup, or porridge with a fork… you can imagine the look on their faces at the sight of all this!

And at the top of Mount Fitzroy, with snow draped across the rocky edges like a veil, you can imagine how cold this is! I was the only insane person without a beanie and gloves. To be honest, I thought my fingers and ears would freeze right off from the cold. Luckily the didn’t.

Anyway, it was my fault for not looking after my stuff, so I’m left with the consequences. At least Esto would lend me his fork, or whatever useless utensil he had left. But you know… that’s consequences… and that’s just life!

Until next time.

–  Kali –

Mount Fitzroy – Argentina

7 April 2017

Author: Mariza

Forgive me,  but yet again, this was “the most amazing walk EVER”!! No wonder it’s the most popular walk around here and draws trekkers from all over the globe. Stunning, stunning scenery for the entire 20km walk!

We were up at 6 and started our walk at 8am after a delicious breakfast of hot porridge. The entire way up the mountain was freezing cold. We saw lots of frozen ponds and scatterings of snow from the previous day. There was also quite a bit of fog initially, which could be a little disheartening when you depend on clear skies for your view. It did, however, clear up to perfect blue skies and gorgeous views as we were having lunch at the lake at the foot of Mount Fitzroy.

It really is as gorgeous as everyone proclaims and absolutely worth that torturous climb for the last kilometre. And yes, it really is too dangerous for a rainy or windy day. We have been blessed with perfect weather yet again. Apparently there are only two perfect weeks here a year and we happened to choose one of them. Lucky us! 😊

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El Chalten – Argentina

Author: Mariza

Hiker’s paradise is the gorgeous little town of El Chalten. Situated in a national park with wonderful walking trails going in all directions out of town, this is an absolutely gem. People come from all over the world to do these amazing walks. The most famous being the Mount Fitzroy trail.

Upon entrance, each person has to sit through an educational talk (in beautiful broken English or Spanish). The town is tiny – I ran right around it in half an hour – and lies in a valley surrounded by beautiful rugged mountains. Stand alone houses (as apposed to Chile’s on-top-of-one-another-all-attached versions) vary in colours, shapes and sizes. Some look like doll’s houses, small and beautiful and fascinating.

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Our abode was a most wonderful surprise. Having booked the cheapest accommodation in town and predicting from the pictures on the booking site, we expected to share a cold shipping container with twenty-four others. Great was our relief and excitement when we were handed keys to a stunning six bunkbed cabin with it’s own bathroom. Such luxury!! And with a heater that is running 24/7!! Clean clothes here we come!!

On our first day we did a quick 10km walk before scouting out every single shop in town. The shops are small, sparsely stocked and incredibly expensive. There shall be no eating or drinking in restaurants and there shall be minimal purchasing in this town!! A small tin of not-great-coffee, milk, a bag of eggs (Yes! That’s how it’s sold here!), and a box of oatmeal later, we have exceeded our budget for the day.

After eating mostly bread for the past several days (cheapest option), Jarik decided a home cooked meal was in order. Our hostel has a kitchen, so out we went again to hunt for things to boil in a pot. Lentils with a beef short rib and sweet potato stew turned into a delicious, hot family meal around a large wooden table. Round that off with a $12 Malbec (that is cheap for Australia, not for South Africa) and happy parents you have. To topple the kiddos into the land of contentment, a big pot of milk tart inner was served for dessert. The natural reaction to stumbling upon cinnamon in a tiny shop, of course!

To say the heating is slightly overdone would be an understatement. With no windows that open, everyone on a top bunk passed out from heat exhaustion. At least all the clean clothes were crispy dry in the morning. We were planning on being up and running by 6am, but seeing that it is pitch black till 8am, we decided to have a little lie in. After a delicious breakfast of hot oatmeal, we embarked on our 20km walk. Halfway up it started snowing. Snowflakes were falling only ever so slightly, but our kids were in absolute awe.

We reached our destination in record time. Out came the rolls and egg mayonnaise. It took about two bites before we realised we will freeze to death. Esto and Eulain already entertained us with a piece of ice from the nearby glacier. Never have you seen six people wolfing down their lunch so fast. And off we we went, RUNNING back to our warm bungalow. It took us only an hour and a half to do the ten kilometres back over rough terrain. Hot chocolate and coffee – fantastic reward!

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We have another three nights here. Tomorrow we will do THE Mount Fitzroy walk. It’s apparently very long, difficult and have VERY steep trails. Mmmmm… I’m sure we’ll survive it. The kids will probably be skipping along and even if the parents’ knees hurt on the way down, we’ll most likely label it an incredible experience once we’re safely wrapped up in our blankets back home.

How blessed are we to be fit and healthy and able to enjoy this marvellous place?! And to have a big, crazy family to share these moments with. Happy, happy heart! ❤

– Mariza –

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