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Nahuel Huapi National Park, Argentina
Situated at the foot of the Andes, The Nahuel Huapi National Park gets its name from the
Lake of the same name. Derived from the Mapuche language, Nahuel means Tiger and Huapi
means Island. The Lake is enormous covering about
150,000 acres and going down to a depth of 464 metres at its deepest point.
In total the park covers an area of 2,927 square miles of the Río Negro and Neuquén
provinces, and is an ideal place for nature lovers and sports enthusiasts alike. The
landscape is very diverse stretching from the Patagonia steppes (flatlands) to the peak
of the Andes on its western side, the border with Chile.
The range of habitats in the Park is immense, encompassing diverse landscapes from the
sub-Antartic to the high Andes. There is a vast array of connecting waterways and Lakes
as well as lowland forest in which there are cipreses, ñires, lengas, coihues, notros,
guindos, lauras, arrayanes, radales, alerces, bamboo and maitenes.
|To the east are the sterile flatlands of the lowland
Patagonia. Going further west the lowland forests give way to the neneo and the coiron
trees, which in turn give way to the valdivian cold forests. These forests support some
fantastic trees such as coihues, mñiu, laura and alerce, as well as varieties of lianas
such as the pahueldin and pil pil voqui. The flora includes notros, (red colored),
mutisias and the amancay, with its typical yellow flowers. The damp undergrowth is
predominantly over-run by the caña colihue and ferns.
This impressive variety of country is home to such wildlife as native perch with river
otter and the hullin (a carnivore mink), by the lakes and rivers; raptors, guanaco, rhea
and patagonian hare live on the steppes and up in the mountains there are condor, puma
and huemul. In the dense undergrowth there are pudu and chucao and the wetlands are home
to lapwing and Andean geese, to name but a few.
|Regardless of the time of year, there is always something to do or see
there. For the winter sports enthusiasts there is skiing in the resort of
Cerro Catedral, or snow shoe hiking or
glacier climbing, as well as a chance to experience a rare opportunity to ski trek across
part of the Catedral mountain range from Cerro Catedral to the snow line to be met by horses
and to ride down to an estancia situated in the
valley below on the edge of the continental divide.
At different times of the year, the lakes in the area are ideal for fly-fishing, boating,
rafting and diving. For those who prefer dry land there is
horse riding, mountain biking,
walking and trekking,
bird-watching and paragliding. Please just ask for further information about any
of the activities you are interested in.
Skiing Holidays, Cultural Tours and Hillwalking/Hiking/Trekking in Argentina, South America.
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