La Fábrica del viento
January 1, 2019. Patagonia, argentina
A series on the National Park Los Glaciares, the largest reserve in the Argentinian Patagonia. Here, mountains rise high above the 3000 meters above sea level and glaciers descend from deep inside of the immense and unexplored ice field. The wind uses the glaciers as highways to accelerate its descent into the valleys. Blowing so strong that it seems it’s trying to bring you down. Locals call this place “the factory of the wind.”
This National Park preserves one of the largest reservoirs of freshwater in the world. The water is pure and drinkable right from the source. It tastes like the last ice-age, as it thaws from being frozen for millennia in the ice-field, to then flow into the glacier lakes. Feels almost sacred to be drinking such ancient water and make it part of your body.
There are not many people here, in this is a vast land of rugged landscapes, turquoise-blue lakes, and silence. I stayed in a remote village of no more than 2000 residents called “El Chalten.” This is 3 hours away by road from the nearest town called “El Calafate.” This road connecting both towns goes through a semi-arid land with hardly any other human settlement. In wintertime, many days can pass before anybody drives through here.
There in Chalten, I met the elusive mount Fitz Roy. An enormous mountain rising 3405 meters above sea level (11’171 ft). The mountain top is always covered by the clouds hence many travelers come all the way here and leave without ever seeing it. I hiked for long hours to be in front of it and indeed didn’t see it, a cloud didn’t want to let go of it. Next day was my last, I woke up early hoping to get a glance of the mountain, but it was still cloudy. It was time to leave when finally it cleared up for a minute so we stopped the car and witnessed its magnitude from the distance. This mountain is so huge that even when driving away from it only seems to get bigger and bigger.