Armed with tents, stoves and enough food to sink a small cargo ship, I joined part of our group in heading out into the wilderness to attempt the parks classic W Trail. Having twice completed the leg of the "W" which provides the classic view of the towers only to find them in cloud, our driver Rhys had been keen from day one to recruit us for the challenge.
It was a slow start with my legs incredibly stiff from a 24km trek from El Chalten just two days before, but after four hours we reached the summit of the first leg to enjoy excellent cloud-free views of the Torres (above) where we celebrated with a rum coke. Purely for medicinal purposes of course.
It was all downhill from there. Or at least that was the plan.
After the four hour return hike we collected about 150kg of camping equipment from the base of the trail for the promised "flat" walk to the campsite at the beginning of the second leg. In fact Rhys had promised it was so flat that it would take us just 3-4 hours to complete, rather than the recommended six on the official map.
Ten minutes in as we began staggering up a steep rocky incline the gravity of our predicament revealed itself and it wasn't long before the trek descended into something closer to an army training exercise than a scenic hike. Four and a half hours and an icy cold river crossing later, sheer exhaustion forced us to make camp several kilometers short of our intended destination. I don't think dehydrated meals have ever tasted so good.