20th December 2003
We awoke early the next day to bright skies and scattered clouds. It looked like a good day for walking. We could finally appreciate the great views of the Fitz Roy range of mountains.
After some breakfast and sorting out our walking gear we headed over to the park information centre to get some maps of the area and advice on the best walk taking into account the changeable weather. We opted for the hike towards Laguna de los Tres. It starts from Camping Madsen at the far end of town and follows a fairly gentle trail through forests and past a few small lakes. The views weren't brilliant as it gradually got windier with the odd shower. Eventually the path joins up with the Madre y Hija trail and it becomes very boggy, although there are various logs strategically placed to ease walking across the area.
We met a couple of people from North Wales and walked along with them for a while. They were camping at Campamento Poincenot and after they set up camp and treated us to a hot cup of tea, we continued the walk towards the Laguna de los Tres. This part of the walk was fairly hard going, zigzagging steeply up a rocky tarn. The weather was quickly getting worse and as we had to get back to El Chalten we decided to turn around, looking forward to the prospect of a warm stew and beer in La Cerveceria, the local microbrewery.
Before eating anywhere in public we needed a hot shower and a few of the hostals allow you to use their facilities for a small fee. We stopped at the Albergue Los Ñires. For $1 each we had use of their clean hot shower. You can camp there also but there are only a few spots and not much shelter.
All scrubbed up, we made our way to the Microbrewery. Drying our boots and coats by the warm wood stove, we sank a couple of dark beers and waited for their home cooked Cazuela, a warming stew of meat, sausages, beans and vegetables.