High in Colorado

High in Colorado
Photo: Mandy Lea Photo

Thursday, January 17, 2013

El Sol es Muy Fuerte

After a couple of days traveling through Kansas City and Dallas I finally reached Buenos Aires, Argentina. First thought, “shit, it’s hot” and I hadn’t even left the airport yet. When I left Kansas City the high temperature was around 20-25F, which made the 90F temps in Buenos Aires almost too much (keep in mind that I was carrying 60lbs in gear with me). 

Honestly, it didn’t take me long to want to leave BA. I hate big cities. I really do. I don’t like the mass amounts of people, the loud noises, the trash in the streets, the almost total lack of vegetation, the never-ending barrage of scammers playing “get the gringo’s money”, and the absence of mountains more than anything. I spent four days in BA, but I was ready to leave sooner. I originally booked three in my hostel and had to add on one more since all of the buses to Bariloche were full the day I wanted to leave. I spent that extra day in my hostel for the most part. At least it was somewhat quiet and didn’t have too many people around during the daytime.

Of course, 99.9% of people who have made the trip from BA to Bariloche know that it involves a 22-24 hour hellish bus ride through landscape that essentially amounts to Kansas covered in little shrubs (the lucky 0.01% decide to fly over all that crap). No me gusta. When the ride is finally over you just want to arrive at your hostel as fast as possible and don’t care how much it costs. So you pay 90 pesos for a taxi rather than try to wrap your frazzled mind around a new city and new local bus system—which you later find out could have dropped you right in front of your hostel for about 5 pesos. Damn.

Perhaps the most frightening revelation of the entire bus ride is meeting people at your hostel traveling south-to-north (opposite direction of you) who just arrived from El Calafate (your next destination). These people would have killed for your 22 hour bus ride. Why? Because their ride was 28 hours.  Again, damn. 

Maybe the thought of another 20+ hour bus ride has kept me in Bariloche for 10+ days now? I doubt it. I think it’s just the gorgeous, sunny, 85F weather, the beautiful lakes, and the tough-as-shit mountains that have me sticking around. Bariloche seems like the perfect place for me to hang out while building my running fitness back up after my winter hibernation. In a few days I might move on and continue my southwardly journey, but until then I think I’ll just hang around here and head back into the Frey…

Welcome to Argentina!
Goodbye, Buenos Aires!

Hello, Bariloche!
Alaska Hostel. Home, Sweet Home.
Swimming out into a nice, cold Lago Huapi
How I feel on some days

Some nice scrambling above Refugio Frey

View from the bottom before heading up to the top

Awesomly eerie ridge line in The Frey

Refugio Frey


  1. Magnificent. Makes me wish I'd seen more of Argentina.

  2. There's definitely loads of stuff to see/do down here. I spent 4 days in Buenos Aires, a month in Bariloche, 3 days in Piedra Parada, a month in El Chalten, and now I'm in Ushuaia...So many great trails here...