On the Road is a weekday feature spotlighting reader photo submissions.
From the exotic to the familiar, whether you’re traveling or in your own backyard, we would love to see the world through your eyes.
I hadn’t quite anticipated the press of tourist buses in Torres del Paine, even during ‘shoulder’ season. I’d asked at the hosteria about hiring a guide to seek out wildlife. The receptionist, not particularly energized, asked: ‘Have you seen guanaco?’ Yes. ‘Darwin’s Rhea?’ Yes. ‘Southern Cara Cara’ Yes. ‘Huemul?’… Okay you’ve already seen everything except Puma. Which you’re not going to see…
We did see significant wildfire damage from the Dec 2011-Jan 2012 fire. Mainly as widely spaced tree skeletons. The fire, apparently caused by a camper trying to burn toilet paper, raged for weeks in a park known for strong persistent winds. Burned 176 sq km (68 sq mi) around Lago Pehoé, Salto Grande waterfall, and Lago Sarmiento.
We visited Lago Gray several times. In part, because after a hike we could enjoy the resort’s bistro with its huge windows looking out across the lake. Hence the fancy cheesecake with calafate berry topping & sorbet…
The lake had this amazing blue ice berg. We’d learned during our cruise that the blue color indicates ice which has had the air bubbles compressed out.
Closer look at the ice berg.
The glacier which feeds the lake is at the far end. Prevailing winds pile up ice debris along a long windy spit which connects the shore to a small island.
A ferry circumnavigates the lake, taking passengers close to the toe of glacier. We opted not to take the ride since we’d already been up close to several glaciers on our cruise.
Besides the island, there were a few other trails to hike near Lago Gray. Note the tree skeletons on the left. We walked this trail just above the Pingo stream valley, paralleling the lake till the trail headed steeply uphill. I’m fine going uphill but hate hiking rough trails downhill as I need to watch. Every. Single. Step. (New stitches in my right elbow to reinforce the hard-won message.)
A tilted stack of turbidites, I presume, with a few small faults cutting through.