Budget Koan's Diary

patagonia2005 travel

Budget Koan’s Diary

Friday 4 February
* Pack weight 3.8 stones (terrible!), blister units 0
(excellent), kilometres 9.5 (v.g)
* What is the sound of one foot hobbling?
* Wherein our two heroes experience photographic blue balls

Arrived at Campomento De Agostini today, where we pitched our
tent within arm’s reach of some nearby Chilenos. Jules’ ankle
seemed to hold up just fine underneath several layers of zinc
oxide and neoprene ankle brace.

We wandered up towards Laguna Torre to try and catch a glimpse of
Cerro Torre, but it was for naught, as the spire was enshrouded
in a dingy tattered shawl of grey cloud cover.

The following morning was slightly better, as we got to see most
of the mountain, although maddeningly, seeming never all at once.
Like the cover of an imported Swedish smut video with black dots
placed in all the strategic places, clouds seemed to dance around
the summit of the Torre in various positions and conniptions for
the hour or so we were there. I haven’t felt this frustrated
since making out with my high school girlfriend.

Saturday 5 February
* Pack weight 3.6 stones (this degree of obesity is shocking,
really), blister units 1 developing (unfortunate), kilometres 8 (v.g)
* If a Chino jumps nekkid into a lake and there is *everyone*
around, will anyone say anything?

Arrived at Campomento Poincenot today, again camping within
spitting distance of other eager turistas. The camping situation
is a mixed bag — drinking directly from the rivers is a great
gobs of fun, but being piled atop your neighbor is a tad much.
Still, I�d take it over a sharp stick to the eye any day.


Sunday 6 February
* Wherein our two heroes savour a rest day and don’t do much of
anything other than checking out some lovely glacial lakes.

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Monday 7 February
* Pack weight 3.2 stones (much better!), blister units 2
(persistent bastards), kilometres 11
* Does a private reserve next to a national park have a Buddha

The private Los Troncos refugio costs $14 pesos per person per
night (vs free for the national park) but makes up for it with
the charming feature of allowing you to pitch your tent in a lawn
covered in dried horse shit.

Tuesday 8 February
* Wherein our two heroes learn the proper usage of a certain
filthy word
* And then are rescued by the French

Woke up early this morning in order to hike out and catch a
view of the back side of Monte Fitz Roy. The three Israelis
camped 7 feet away decided to wake up early as well presumably to
hike out to Cerro Electrico. Apparently, they woke up the nice
Brits who were camped 3 feet away, so one of them poked his head
out of his tent and politely asked them to keep it down as they
were trying to sleep. The Israelis apologized and then continued
to talk at the exact same volume. A few seconds later, we heard
the Brit scream out from inside his tent, “IGNORANT C**TS!”
We later decided that you just haven’t heard that epithet used
correctly until you’ve heard a Brit scream it in a furious rage.

Hiking back to El Chalten via Ruta Provincial 23 was a dismal
prospect, especially after having to ford the Rio Blanco and
ending up with wet footwear. Luckily, after a few kilometres, we
were picked up by a friendly French family on holiday. Irony of
ironies, for once, I think that Frenchmen were offended by the
smell of Americans.

This email was brought to you by the letter Q and the country of
Chile (where we are currently located (Puerto Natales, that is),
before our next 5 day trek to see los Torres del Paine).