10.11. – 7.12.2019
Offroad and other tracks
On the way from Puerto Deseado to Tres Cerros we didn’t want to go back on the big street and chose a nice little side street on the map. The path turned out to be a dirt road. When crossing the Estancia Dos Hermanos, the rocky outcrops in the curves were so narrow that it was not possible to get through with Globi. We drove around the Estancia over any tracks, really off-road! The water crossings were pretty exciting. On foot we explored for more than half an hour in advance the possible ways for Globi. After several hours we found the official dirt road again.
After a long time away from civilization we urgently needed water and internet again. The location on the maps at the big Ruta 3 «Tres Cerros» seemed to be the right place for this. Unfortunately, the town was just a petrol station and yet one without internet and water!
After the Estancia Haberton we drove a small day’s stage towards the lighthouse. The road is under construction right now and is extremely expanded. We found a fantastic place to stay overnight above the Beagle Channel and were able to follow the shipping traffic in the canal from here.
In Ushuaia, our southernmost, bigger city, we try to book a last minute trip to Antarctica. We set ourselves a relatively sporty price target and, to our amazement, hit it fully with the third agency within a very short time. A bit surprised by our spontaneity, we had to stock up on the necessary warm clothes within a few days! We will describe our corresponding experiences in the next travel notes …
We have made it our goal to hike or walk at least a little bit every day, but there are always reasons why this is not possible. However, Gabi is much more consistent than I am. But in the Karukinka National Park we finally go on a real hike up a high hill with a great view and stormy winds. It almost blew our view away, but we enjoyed it and immediately felt much better afterwards. We did this hike completely alone and were probably the only ones during the whole week.
The second hike that deserves this name was to the Laguna Esmeralda. The hike is actually very easy, but has certain restrictions. On the one hand, this hike is very well known, which is why the path was so full of hikers during the week so that it was impossible to miss the direction. There were about as many people on the trail as during rush hour on the Bahnhofstrasse in Zurich. On the other hand there is the swamp, which is the second limitation. The people commenting in the app iOverlander described the trail as muddy, but we didn’t really take it seriously since most of the Overlanders drive and don’t hike. But there is a swamp, in several places and also a lot of mud. It was well ankle deep and the different areas were well over 100m long. Detours led into an even deeper swamp and there was a risk of sinking and not being found, since nobody tries the same detour. We fought our way through and not only cleaned our shoes afterwards!
We are completely alone at Lake Yehuin. Suddenly we hear engine noises. Two motorcycles appear, one of them a Vaud. You meet the Swiss everywhere! Either way it seems that we meet quite a lot of Overlanders during this time.
We have been in contact with Brigitte and Alain from France for a long time already via the Internet. In Rio Grande we now meet them personally and spend a nice evening together. We saw their MAN 6×6 with a Unicat body last year in Nueva Helvetia.
Shortly before the Passo Garibaldi on our way to Ushuaia we meet Marion and Walter. We have already met them in Botswana and Uruguay. They tell us what to expect in Ushuaia.
We also meet the 3Ms, Morena, Massimo and Monti at Laguna Esmeralda. The first time we met them at Playa Isla Escondida and later again south of Caleta Olivia and in Ushuaia.
We finally saw Renate and Bruno in Ushuaia. We have been in virtual contact with them for a long time. And now for the first time we get together in person. We had a few great days together and told each other about our experiences and were looking forward to our respective Antarctic tours. However, they will take a 21-day trip.
We always enjoy meeting friends, it is such a nice feeling.
For a smile
We worked our way on RP 89 for five hours when we finally got to the last gate before the tar road. The chain was connected to a padlock. In fact a provincial road cannot be closed by private individuals. Gabi got out and came back with the information that it was closed. I was already considering various options for forcing the gate open when Gabi, after a second, closer inspection, found that the chain could very well be unhooked, one had to open it just at a completely different part of the chain.
We especially enjoy our bread maker here in South America. Real good bread is something important for us. Gabi fills and starts the machine in the evening and I open it in the morning, so that Gabi jumps out of the bed just by the smell. The machine works with 220V. However, we only have alternating current if we run the inverter. After the last espresso in the evening, we economically switch off the inverter! Once we also switched off, even though the bread maker was on duty. That meant no bread for our breakfast, a real disaster!
Gabi’s large video camera also has two large batteries. We once visited the Rockhopper penguins at Puerto Deseado, very cute animals. When the first battery was empty, Gabi changed the batteries, everything completely normal. But somehow nothing worked. She concluded that the second battery was not charged! A huge frustration with the big camera in the middle of the cute animals and no chance to film. Back in the Globi, Gabi recognized that the battery was charged properly, but she didn’t control it properly, tja …