Where’s Wally?

Perito Moreno Glacier
Camera: Panasonic DC-G9 | Date: 13-02-2023 11:52 | Resolution: 12642 x 3498 | ISO: 400 | Exp. bias: 0 EV | Exp. Time: 1/1000s | Aperture: 8.0 | Focal Length: 18.0mm

The first day of the tour proper was spent on a trip to the Perito Moreno Glacier, a 250km2 ice formation, one of 48 glaciers fed by the Southern Patagonian Ice Field between Argentina and Chile. It is one of the most readily accessible for tourism, and as such is a major draw. Aside from the natural wonder, it has an unusual human history, as the area became one of the first national parks globally following their invention in the USA and Canada.

The hill opposite the front of the glacier is threaded through with a series of metal walkways and platforms so you can observe the glacier from multiple angles. All the steps weren’t ideal for my knees, but I got some great views, both panoramas of the whole glacier and details of the ice.

Detail of blue glacial ice, Perito Moreno Glacier (Show Details)

I have discovered that this tour is not running on “Rangers Rules” (Leave No Man Behind). I had gone slightly further down the trail to get a shot, and ended up back at the agreed meeting point shortly before the agreed time, with no sign of anyone else. After 15 minutes I discovered that they were all already in the cafe without me. From here on it’s every man for himself!

The glacier is very dynamic, advancing around 2.5m per day. This means that there’s a fairly continuous calving process, and during our visit several large lumps of ice fell off into the water, usually with no warning. This adds to the photographic challenge – can you have your camera in hand with appropriate settings to capture the event. Today I was lucky – a small piece fell off and alerted me, and I realised that a much larger slab was likely to follow. I didn’t have my camera out, and it was a race to get it ready. In the end I just made it, but without being zoomed in or in high speed mode, I just had to prod away at the shutter release while the collapse happened, but I’m really pleased with a couple of the frames.

Glacial calving (Show Details)

When I’m at a tourist location I’m always happy to do a swap and take a photo of someone on their camera, in return for the equivalent to record myself at the scene. While this has never resulted in anything really bad happening, the results on my side seem to vary between the odd and the hilarious. Today was no exception: I took a straightforward picture of a couple of South American ladies, and handed one of them my camera. Unsatisfied with a straight equivalent she started off up the steps to “get it all in”. I call the result “Where’s Wally?”

Where’s Wally? (Show Details)

Back at base we split into a couple of groups with different designs on dinner style and timing. With the four Germans and Glenn I headed to La Fabbrica, a “Cervezaria” or as we call them in Britain, a pub. We had a highly entertaining evening with a young waitress who was determined to teach us a least a little Spanish. The food was good, the beer better and the company excellent.

The Festival of the Lake continues. I really liked the headline act of the night, essentially a “folk rock” group, but I would have preferred if they finished slightly earlier than about half past midnight when I was trying to get to sleep. Oh well…

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