Thursday, November 7, 2013

Postcard Contest 3: Trip Planning Challenge

EDIT Nov. 9:

The deadline passed with *zero* comments or suggestions. So I went ahead and bought my first overpriced bus ticket, thereby committing myself more or less to the plans I had tentatively come up with prior to posting. But I don't want a postcard contest to pass without a postcard-receiver, so I'll send a postcard to:
  1. The first person to comment. Period.
  2. The first person who can name the small mountain range at the end of the world that I'll be going to next.
  3. The person who writes the most interesting thing about Tierra del Fuego, Isla Navarino, the voyage of the Beagle, or anything relevant to that part of the world.

Three postcards! I'm feeling all kinds of crazy this morning.




A view from the lake in Bariloche, where I am now. Why would I ever want to leave? But it's time for this nomad to move on.


Okay friends, I have a challenge for you.

I spent more time than I care to admit last week trying to map out the best (read: cheapest) possible way to get to my next destination(s) and keep thinking "there has got to be a better way". Before I commit to my tentative plan, I thought I'd send a line out and see if anyone out there has any better ideas.

This is where I want to go.

So here's the challenge



I am currently in Bariloche, Argentina. I want to get to Isla Navarino, Chile, which is pretty much the closest I can get to Antarctica until I manage to weasel my way onto a research expedition. Once there, I want to spend at least 6 days there backpacking in the mountains. Weather forecasts make me think sooner would be better than later...living in a bivvy sack through a week of downpour at near-freezing temperatures could get pretty not-fun pretty fast.
And then here.

After Isla Navarino, I need to get to El Calafate to meet up with some friends for the most epic 30th birthday party ever in Torres del Paine. Did I mention that I turn 30 on the 27th? Birthday presents in the form of bus tickets, penguin tours, and wealthy friends whose yachts I can hitch rides on gladly accepted. ;-)

Postcard goes to whomever reports back in the next 24 hours with the route I like best. Judging will be totally subjective.



Rules and Details


  • Departure from Bariloche no sooner than the morning of Nov. 8.
  • A minimum of 6 days on Isla Navarino, including the good-forecast period from Nov. 12-14.
  • Arrival in El Calafate no later than mid-day on November 25th.
  • I will not be doing any swimming.
  • Please include realistic time estimates and details of routes, companies, transfers, travel times, etc. wherever possible.
  • To be considered, include a final cost for the entire trip from Bariloche to the end destination at El Calafate.
  • Optional side trip tips (with costs and details where possible) are appreciated and will not count toward the final trip price.
  • Deadline is 18:00 Buenos Aires time (UTC -03:00) Friday, November 8, 2013.

Me, backpacking with the splitboard in Patagonia. Cut out the me minus the board and paste me into a scene at the end of the world.


Postcard Contest Disclaimer

Answers must be posted as comments on this blog to be considered, and can't be anonymous (if I don't know who you are, I can't contact you to get your address to mail you a postcard).

The prize for the winner will be a postcard from their choice of Bariloche, Isla Navarino, or Torres del Paine. If I can't find a postcard, I will print a photo and mail it. I make no promises to when the postcard will be mailed or when it will arrive (mail is slow here, and it may take me a while to find a postcard and a post office), but patience! You will get it!