That’s my best word to describe the experience we just had. We are four days into our six day backpacking trip in Patagonia National Park along the Rio Aviles.

Today we split into two hiking groups, one with a longer distance and earlier wake-up time, and the other a more leisure morning and short hike. I decided to go further, with the goal of reaching Lago Verde (Green Lake), an ambitious destination.

We woke up at 6:30am and were walking away from camp by 7. By the light of headlamps, we traversed out of the valley we are in, and into the one next to us, Valle Hermosa (Beautiful Valley). From the ridge line, we watched the sun come up over the glacier capped mountains as we hiked. Finally into Valle Hermosa, we followed the river, crossing 20 or more different drainages and pools along the way. We gave up on keeping our feet or boots dry and by the end of the day, crossing a river felt just like walking on the trail…maybe a little bit colder.

After three and a half hours of hiking, and a bit of break mixed in, we reached Lago Verde. It was pretty verde (green)!

Surrounded by glacier capped and red rock mountains, the green lake reflects the beautiful landscape. We ate lunch, and then took some nap time, covering ourselves with clothes and sunscreen beforehand.

On our way back, we were greeted by shining glaciers and spiked peaks.

And so, I will maintain that my best word to describe our day was just wow!


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