We spent a few days in the town of Calafate on the southern border of Lago Argentino, an immense glacial lake. This area of Patagonia is also home to Los Glaciares National Park. A town of about 20,000 or so, the city grew from tourism geared towards hikers in the area and visitors to the national park.
We had a great time strolling through the central district of town and doing some window shopping and exploring. The lake adjacent to this city holds a shade of blue I have never seen before - of an almost milky light neon hue. The sediment in melted glacial ice gives it its color and it is out of another world, particularly when flying in for a landing.
The next day we were able to explore the Perito Moreno Glacier. This is one of the only non-receding glaciers in the world, meaning that it is neither growing nor shrinking in size. The wind whips moisture over the Andes mountains and it freezes on the peaks and day after day sends the glacier marching steadily forward into the lake. The glacier moves outwards and crumbles into the water. When viewing the glacier up close, you are aware of a constant rumble as pieces of ice both small and immense break off the glacier and fall into the lake. It almost feels like it is alive.
For me it was a wonder of the world, a glacier many kilometers in length moving forward like a conveyor belt in a long but slow cycle of creation, progression, and destruction. I thought it was an unexpected reminder of our impossibly small place in the universe. // Jeff