The park is about an hour from El Calafate and is the largest national park in the country. There really isn’t any town closer and now I know why cars fill up anytime they see a gas stations in Patagonia. Most cars carry extra gas cans especially if they are driving longer distances.
The park consists of 48 major glaciers and is the largest ice cap outside of Antarctica, Greenland and Iceland. We went to see the Perito Moreno Glacier which is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Patagonia. The glacier is the world’s third largest reserve of fresh water. It is 97 square miles of ice and it really is beautiful.
While we hear in the news that glaciers are retreating quickly, this glacier actually hasn’t changed in size in the last 100 years. Although, I did hear that they had their warmest day in history this last summer so hopefully things don’t start changing here. At the highest point, the glacier is 22 floors high.
The park consisted of a nice walkway that was accessible for everyone. We spent around 3 hours walking around looking at the breathtaking views of the glacier. The glacier was definitely active with sounds. It would sound like dynamite going off and I kept thinking that we would see a splash of water but we never did see anything break off. It is the noise of the ice breaking but you never really can see from where. If it were cloudy, I would have probably thought there was a lot of thunder. There was a sign though that said if ice breaks, it can go a long distance. They have had 30 plus deaths within of a 20 year timeframe from ice breaking off and going a long distance.