The Birth of an Iceberg

There’s a reason so many people come to El Calafate, and its not for the expensive restaurants, though with any tourist town that’s a part of the deal. No, El Calafate is the gateway to Parque Nacional Los Glaciares (Glacier National Park), and the highlight attraction, Glacier Perito Moreno. This is a glacier in the classic sense, flowing directly into Lago Argentino. We headed out early in the morning in a rental car to beat the tour buses so we could sit in silence and listen to the creaks, moans, cracks and thunder of the glacier, and we were not let down. We felt dwarfed at sitting at the bottom, now looking at the pictures it’s really hard to get the right sense of proportion.

What separates Perito Moreno from other such glaciers is that it moves really fast, meaning it is regularly calving, or as we like to call it, giving birth to new icebergs. We got to see four or five large “births” and each time was as incredible as the last. The noise as the ice cracked, then dropped, then hit water, then reverberated around the area was simply awesome. It was literately minutes before the sound totally died away and it was silent again for a few minutes (till the next creaks began).

(Hope that file didn’t eat your computer … or our website). I wish we had a way for you to hear the sounds too.