ARGENTINA: Moreno Glacier: Patagonia
23 images Created 15 Jun 2012
Visit Perito Moreno Glacier in Los Glaciares National Park as a day trip from El Calafate, in southwest Santa Cruz province, Argentina. Easy boardwalks give wide views of Moreno Glacier, an impressive wall of ice 200 feet high and 3 miles (5 km) wide flowing into Lake Argentina. The glacier flows up to 2300 feet thick and originates in the huge Hielo Sur (Southern Icefield) in the southern Andes mountains. For the past 90 years, its advancing has equaled melting (up to 2 meters per day, 700 meters per year), and the terminus has stayed at one location. Flowing ice periodically dams an arm of the lake which rises for a few years then breaks across the nose of the glacier as a crashing river (in March 2004 and 1991). In 2005 (photos), a narrow river flowed across the glacier face which calved large chunks of ice into the water with a loud crash several times per day. The foot of South America is known as Patagonia, a name derived from coastal giants, Patagão or Patagoni, who were reported by Magellan's 1520s voyage circumnavigating the world and were actually Tehuelche native people who averaged 25 cm (or 10 inches) taller than the Spaniards.