We continued our tour of Argentine lakes, rivers and mountains today.
Initially we continued South along Hwy 234 on gravel surface past a number of lakes before turning East onto Hwy 65 to traverse along the southern side of Lake Traful.
The drive beside this lake was simply wonderful. There were stands of towering trees, views of the sparkling (and slightly turquoise and unbelievably clear) waters of the lake. There were many tempting camp sites along the way. We passed through the sleepy Villa Traful which apparently becomes overrun with Argentine tourists in January and February. But right now it is quiet.
Not far past Villa Traful the road left the Eastern end of the lake and travelled down a river valley towards the town of Confluencia. From this valley we had great views of the surrounding mountains which have a myriad of sharp pinnacles jutting up, some narrow and short, some big and very tall. They look like the remnants of volcanoes where the softer earth around the core has weathered away.
On the recommendation of a pair of motorcyclists we took a side road into a narrow canyon where we got a close up look at some of the pinnacles. The columnar structure of the rock further suggested that they are volcanic - at this point I wish I knew more geology.
A little more gravel road and then we were at Confluencia and highway 237 which led us South to Bariloche. Its full name is San Carlos De Barioche - and in our Argentine atlas, we finally worked out, we have to look it up under S not B - now that has caused us some angst.
We will see more of Bariloche tomorrow and doubtless have more to say about the town. Today we did not see much of it. A quick drive around the older part of the town and then West along 237 and the shores of Lago Nahuel Huapi to Colonia Suiza. There is tourist development all along the 18 km of lake shore that we drove, restaurants, hotels, cabins, super markets, gas station and campgrounds. You could close your eyes and with a bit of imagination think - Lake Tahoe.
We are at a campground called Huenei Roca in a village/area called Colonia Suiza on the shores of Lake Perito Moreno.The grounds have toilets, electricity, hot showers, and I even found enough wood for a camp fire on which to cook the first good steak we have had since leaving the US. The grounds are well protected by trees, which is a good things since it is very windy and cool.