The crispness of Patagonia’s pristine air, the crunch of a light layer of snow under boot, and the periodic sound of thunder as a small chunk of the Perito Moreno Glacier calves – sending tons worth of ice cascading down ice cliffs and into the gorgeous blue-gray waters of the freshwater lake that serves as birthing ground and cemetery for one of the world’s great glaciers. I can think of few more relaxing or majestic sights in the world.
Situated outside the sleepy service town of El Calafate in the heart of the Patagonia region of Argentina, the Perito Moreno Glacier stands vigil as gatekeeper over a strange landscape. The open plains that El Calafate rest in are rugged, dry, and consist of little more than sand deserts and low-scrub brush. The winding streams turned extra-ordinary grays and blues by the glacial waters and sediment crisscross the landscape etching out strange patterns while giving life to unusual green belts. And yet, the foothills which quickly give way to the towering mountains of the Andes are a complete opposite. With lush vegetation, ferns, moss, cascading waterfalls, and beautiful forests the approach to and path along the Perito Moreno Glacier is completely different. Marked only by the barren baldness of sheer cliffs and the rich blues and pristine whites of the glacier itself.
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