1. Las Altas Cumbres between Córdoba and Mina Clavero
The route between Córdoba city and the town of Mina Clavero takes you through a picturesque mountainous area – when we drove through, it was very foggy, giving it a mysterious vibe. After breaking though the foggy ascent, we stopped at some pretty rock formations where we were on level with the clouds. A bit further on, we visited a location called La Ola, or The Wave, where there are a few climbing routes, as well as a pretty stream across the highway. Córdoba was one of the first places Tincho came to climb, and while this was not the very first location, it definitely brought back some memories for him.
An interesting formation of rocks; I imagine this waterfall and river used to be much deeper. Tincho says the name comes from the fact that the rocks look like elephants, but I don’t really see it. Perhaps the round puddles look like elephant foot steps?
3. La Yunga
En route from San Miguel de Tucumán to Tafí Del Valle on road number 307, there is a sub tropical rain forest in a region of the small mountain range called the Nevados del Aconquija. It’s quite a surprise to hit this wet area, especially when a lot of the north is so arid. The route has significant historical importance as well as it was one of the first routes through the Calchaquies mountains.
4. This sweet dog who adopted us in La Rioja – there were lots of stray dogs wandering around in each town. I’m a dog lover but figure as long as they are able to eat, they are doing alright (though we did drive past a few who had become road kill 😓) This fellow trotted right up to me in the centro of La Rioja, put his paw on me, and hung out. We got up to leave, but ran into him again half way across town 30 minuetes later! He followed us as we walked back to the hostel.
This is the name of an incredible red canyon, as well as a national park. We got marooned in La Rioja as we waited for Monday (and an open auto repair shop for a clutch replacement), and ended up taking the local micro to the park. There, we treated ourselves to the best guided tour available – it had everything; a sweet guide, crazy old ladies fighting over seats, local fauna sightings, as well as wine and snacks, including some yummy fried dough sticks (I may never find them again) and amazing locally grown olives. I learned that the ostrich is called a Suri there, there are animals related to the rabbit called the Mara, llamas are called Guanacos, and there is an endangered bird called a Matineta. I have to admit I asked the guide far more linguistic related questions than geographical ones. The area is gorgeous and we wish we had had more time to explore the other paths and routes that visitors take.
This canyon is special because of it’s very straight walls, caused by, what else, a prehistoric river.
The site has historical significance – scientists believe that it was a point along an ancient trade route, as evidenced by hieroglyphs in the area.
6. A bit tongue in cheek, but gaining confidence in driving stick shift was also a high light on this trip! Getting into first is still a bit tense, but these past couple of months I came a long way 😎