As we leave Torres del Paine, crossing the border into Argentina, we travel for almost 4 hours, NE and NW to El Calafate, located just 85 km away from our lodge in Paine. The reason for this big detour is that there is no road, over the Andes and the Southern Continental ice fields!
We spend the night in El Calafate, making a detour to Los Glaciares National Park, for a short visit to the Perito Moreno Glacier, one of the most spectacular glaciers in the world. We then go around the SE part of Lake Argentino, and drive North. 140 km later, we leave the paved road and turn left, again towards the Andes. A long journey across the vast steppes, and suddenly the pale brown color of the steppes is cut by the glacial blue of San Martin lake. As we get closer to the mountains, patches of forest and snow capped mountains appear everywhere, and we arrive to Estancia El Condor, a private 40,000 ha. ranch, with its own mountain chains, glaciers and rivers. a 24 km coastline and cliffs, used by one of the largest flying birds in the world, the Andean Condor, one of our objectives of the trip. The lodge has only 6 rooms, and we are the “owners” of this “private national park” for a few days!