January 02, 2003 GMT
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

On our way to Ushuaia we diverted off highway 3 for a bit of a gravel run to El Calefate to see the famous Perito Moreno Glacier (well, famous in these parts anyway!!). It was amazing, one of the most spectacular sites we have seen, rivaling Iguassu Falls!! The Glacier moves 2 metres per day and ¨calves off¨ every 10 minutes into a large glacial lake. It sounds like a huge roaring animal and is mesmerising- Pat watched it for 4 whole hours and saw some amazingly large slabs fall off into the lake creating enormous waves!! We were lucky that day in that it was warm and sunny, with very little wind.

We then continued on good roads to Ushuaia- the most southern town in the world- or Ënd of the World¨as they call it here!! It is in a spectacular setting with snow capped peaks behind, a sheltered strait in front and more snow capped peaks across the strait. We stayed in a great place on top of the hill called Apart Alem overlooking the city and the water and we watched the cruise ships arriving daily from Antarctica and the sun setting at 11pm and rising at 3am (we didnt see to many sunrises!!) There was no TOTAL darkness in between- amazing.

Xmas Eve we had a party in our apartment and invited everyone from the top floor to attend, it was an international party with guests from around the world. Xmas Day turned out to be sunny and beautiful. We met a group of 12 motorcyclists at the end of the world sign at the end of the route 3 in the National Park. We saw 12 other motorcyclists in Ushuaia that had no meeting place or time for the annual traditional motorcycle rondevou in Ushuaia.

We stayed in Ushuaia for 6 wonderful days partying with motorcyclists from around the world. We met lots more in the next few days on the road north to Puerto Natales.

In this portion of the trip we were rather lucky not to experience the hazardous 150 Km winds known to frequent the Patagonian region in summer.

We arrived in a lovely little village called Puerto Natales, got a group of 11 together and had a fantastic New Years Eve dinner and party. We all said our New Years Resolutions. Ours was that year 2002 has been the best year in our lives and we want them to keep getting better every year!!

Tonight, we are getting on the ferry for 4 days heading north towards Puerto Montte through the fjiords and beneath the glaciers, heading towards some warmth!!

Posted by at January 02, 2003 06:40 PM GMT
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