One for the Bucket List: Trekking on a Glacier
If I had a bucket list, trekking on a glacier would be on it.
It should be on yours!
The first full day of the Patagonian Trails Tour started things off big.
I mean really big.
In addition to seeing incredible views of Perito Moreno Glacier from the lookout point, we took a boat ride over to the Aventura y Hielo (Adventure & Ice) camp to do a guided mini-trek on the glacier.
Walking on a Glacier
This was the real thing. They got us geared up with crampons.
And we were off.
Although this is a safe activity, you do have to follow the guides’ instructions and be careful when crossing giant crevasses or walking on a ledge.
This is a really deep hole (and wide enough for humans) where glacier meltwater flows. You really do NOT want to fall in while taking a photo.
I ignored the instructions and jumped in a pool of water.
Nice little trick, huh?
Perito Moreno Fun Facts
This is inside Parque Nacional de Los Glaciares. This glacier is part of the Southern Patagonian Ice Field, which is like a glacier factory. This ice field is the third largest in the world (300km long and 50km wide).
The Perito Moreno Glacier is 31km long and 6km wide. It is 40-60 meters above the water and 100 meters below.
Seriously, it’s huge.
It is one of the few glaciers in the world that is in balance. It is not growing or retreating. (Note that 98% of the world’s glaciers are retreating.)
This glacier advances about 2 meters a day. That is A LOT for something so large.
70% of the glacier is developing ice constantly, and 30% of it is melting quickly. Every 4-6 years the glacier moves down far enough to touch the Magellan Peninsula and cuts off the lake. That is where it is right now.
There is something really incredible about being on a natural wonder of this size.
It is unimaginable until you see it for yourself.
I heard loud noises that sound like a rifle firing. This was the glacier moving… as we were walking on it. Pieces of the glacier fall off all the time.
This boat got lucky and saw a huge chunk of ice fall.
I missed the splash, but you can see how far the wave went.
Sometimes “putting it on” for the tourists can be fun. At the end of our trek, we got to have a whiskey made with ice chipped off of the glacier.
I never drink whiskey, but this was a whiskey on glacier ice.
I had to have a few sips.
(Note: They are smart and do this at the end after you walk back down the glacier. Probably a good idea, since you already a little wobbly wearing the crampons.)
Have you ever seen a glacier?
This post is part of a series about my experience on the Patagonian Trails Tour with Adventure Center. I was very impressed by their range of tour options from light to extreme adventure all over Latin America and the rest of the world. There really is something for everyone. Adventure Center handles all bookings with Peregrine for North American clients.