San Carlos de Bariloche

May 10, 2008 - Bariloche, Argentina

Just getting around to updating my blog for bariloche now - its a great little town now i have to say - it is set in the beautiful lake district of argentina and it very much resembles a alpine town it even has plenty of chocolate shops and is famed in argentina for it's chocolate.

We landed at the end of a long journey from el calafate in southern patagonia that took 2 days with some delays (yet bariloche is still in patagonia so just gives you an idea how big patagonia is) We chilled out for a day then it was sunday and the the town was like a ghost town for about 2 hours in the middle of the day - which realised was due to the Boca vs River Plate match its huge all over argentina it seems and every local seems to support one or the other - when the match was over with Boca the winners there where celebrations in the streets and fireworks being set off and people hanging out of cars waving flags which continued for 2 or 3 hours (madness)

The next day got to explore the town and local area a bit and went to top of the mountain behind the town to get a better view of the lakes of the lake district - beautiful views and sunny weather - it has a nice climate in which the summer it has warm weather and is dry in the autumn then snow for winter sports in the winter (we where here just a month too early for any winter sports - so i wasn't able to brave any slopes for snowboarding just yet - maybe my collarbone is thankful). We also where too late for doing white water rafting locally as the operators close up shop at the start of may (another off season we've come across). But luckily we arrived at the perfect time for mountain biking with a mulitude of local tracks and trails that you can do - and seen as ger had done it before he was keen to try them out - we rented bikes for the day for 10 or 11 euro (not bad value) and took off up a trek/trail recommended to us it was difficlut on the way up and involved carrying bike on shoulder over many rocky sections and even a small bit of almost climbing with bike on back we arrived at start of downhill section and waited for shane for a while (but found out from a hiker he had turned back due to the difficulty of the uphill slog and the fact he had no grip on his runners - so it was quite difficult) but it was all well worth it for the descent on the bike over roots on dirt tracks over and between rocks at speed - it is quite daunting and one of the toughest sports i've ever done i'd say but it is very exhilarating and enjoyable. I went over the handle bars at one stage from pressing to hard on the front breaks (front suspension is a good and a bad thing) but luckily i was able to hop out off the pedals to one side as i went over to avoid injury - Niall had a spill from trying a difficult a difficult and drop and a fast corner - was an impressive fall into alot of bamboo shoot type trees but he was alright only a few scrapes and cuts - pity i didn't have my camera out videoing at the time though ah well! The cycle back into town was extremely tough and was absolutely shattered after it. Great sport will definitely be trying it out again somewhere along the journey.

Nialls birthday was on the friday night for which we went out to a parrilla (argentinan meat grill) and then out on the town along with one of the locals enrique who worked in the hostel who was extremely sound and we had good craic with him and his mates

Not much else to report except - I kicked ass in bowling which was just as well after mentioning I used to be a good player when I captained a work team during my days on work placement in compaq in galway

Bariloche is a lovely town that i'd love to return to some day

Next stop Mendoza in central argentina (the centre of the argentinian wine region) before heading to santiago.


Pictures

cable cars
view from mountain behind bariloche
lake near bariloche
niall and ger after mountain biking
 
 

7 Comments

Marie:
May 17, 2008
Really enjoying reading your blog Brain. Sounds facinating. Trying to talk Seamus into selling the house so we can join you in your travels but dont think he is having any of it. Dont worry ill keep trying!!!
sean:
May 21, 2008
I agree with Seamus... You can do all of this stuff up in Donegal! :-p

Do they have Football Special in Argentina??
Megs:
May 21, 2008
The public transport is probably better there than in Donegal though.

You could start up a football special importing company.
Brian:
May 22, 2008
haha - when did seamus say this? marie i'm sure you could lease out the house for a bit instead of selling it - i know seamus would never go for selling his fortress ha! Football special importing company genius megs!! send me a shipment to brian on tour, south america
they'll know where to send it - i'm kind of celeb down these parts at this stage ;-P
KevinS:
May 29, 2008
Wots da bets on brian bringing home some chocolate from argentina at the end of his trip....i expect a bar from every country ya travel to brian...so take note!
noreen:
May 29, 2008
Hi, Brian,
Just been looking through your blog, Hope you have a whale of a time. All good here, Brendan got exams next week, Eoghan and Ciaran finished for summer.

Enjoy and take care.

Noreen & Tom
Leo & Jo:
May 30, 2008
Glad you are having a good time. All going well here Leona nearly all set for her wedding. Going for hen Saturday. Lads heading for stag tomorrow, they seem to need 2 nights.Keep safe and enjoy
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