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Siete Lagos by bike

   
 Estimated reading time: 3 min. Texts Photos Gonzalo Aziz Texts Photos Gonzalo Aziz
Siete Lagos by bike - San Martín de los Andes

A adventure by bike which requires low physical effort and joins the cities of San Martín de los Andes and Villa La Angostura through Provincial route 234.

Argentinean Philosopher José Ingenieros once said, defining an idealist,
“ Not everyone goes into raptures over a sunset, dream in front of dawn or shiver in a tempest, neither enjoy walking with Dante, laughing with Molière, shiver with Shakespeare, rustle with Wagner or is speechless in front of the David”.We think that “riding Siete Lagos Road by bike;“ can be included in this list since he finishes the idea saying that “ An ideal is a gesture of the spirit to perfection”

This is why , if you are a fan of nature, you cannot miss this ideal excursion since it is only 112 kilometers long , along Nº 234 Provincial Route which links San Martín de los Andes City with Villa La Angostura. There are no huge demands regarding fitness or previous experience. Watch out! You must never go alone!
We advise you to take four days to enjoy the landscape .
Before departing, check that everything is OK ( well inflated wheels for the first section of the route- concrete - and weight balanced in two bags); check also that you do not miss anything : helmet - essential- , small igloo, rain suit, heater and first-aid kit.
It is essential to take food for each and every day. There are some shops along the route ( in Hermoso Lake, Villarino Lake and Correntoso Lake ) but they may not be open as you pass by.
All the excitement starts at Lácar Lake but, please, do not let the first 15 kilometers let you down since they go up and worn you out. This is just the first effort that will take you to Partido Stream ( Split ) where there is a lot of water waiting for you.
From there onwards, there are many up and down slopes and once you pass Hermoso Stream by ( 27 km away from San Martín ), you will reach green Machónico Lake.
Siete Lagos by bike - San Martín de los Andes
You must have cycled for some hours and you must be quite tired, but you must still make an effort to finish up your day. Eight kilometers away from Machónico Lake, you will find a road to your right leading to Hermoso Lake. This will be the first stop to sleep in a tent immersed in a wild atmosphere in front of the lake. Unforgettable !
You should get up early and have a good breakfast ( cereals, fruits, etc. ) on the following day because you will have to go on cycling. Up and down slopes will take you to km number 45 where two wonderful lakes are located opposite each other - Falkner and Villarino. This is where Lanin National Park finishes and Nahuel Huapi National Park starts. It is worth stopping and enjoying the excellent view.
There are camping sites which are very well organised with grills, bathrooms and whatever is necessary to enjoy nature. You can stop here if you want but you can also go on.
Concrete finishes here just when you have reached half the way of your trip. The landscape changes- soil, woods and mountains. You should deflate the wheels a bit in order not to bounce or skid too much.
A bit forward, you will get to Escondido Lake which deserves being described as spectacular. Surrounded by vegetation, water is quite far down the route. There is a prominent down slope which is not good for bikes.
Siete Lagos by bike - San Martín de los Andes
You will now enjoy the highest flow of adrenalin. A great slope takes you down through bends from Escondido Lake to Pichi Traful Lake ( Northern branch of Traful Lake ) where you must stop for the second time on a wild place by the river. There is a Forest Ranger here. You must rest properly since the following day will be a bit hard.
The last day's journey will go on along a gravel road . There are slopes going up and down which make the ride exciting. All of a sudden, after a long slope down, you will get to Correntoso Lake- a big mirror of water. In one of the bends, there is a track leading to Espejo Chico Lake and Rucamalén Stream - wonderful!
Espejo Chico Lake is ideal to have lunch. There is a camping site and a shop on the verge of it. The landscape invites you to have a rest but you must not stop too long since you still have to ride a long way.
Siete Lagos by bike - San Martín de los Andes
Departing from the Correntoso is quite as difficult as departing from Lácar Lake. The members of the group must encourage each other in order not to give up.

One hour of effort ahead, you will get to Espejo Lake. There is also a camping site here.
But you will still have strengh to go on and find what you were looking for.

There are few sensations like seeing the signal that reads: to your right, Chile and to your left, La Angostura. You are near your target.

Concrete appears again and Nahuel Huapi Lake is by your right side. You will find it hard to believe you are cycling with this great view. You will not be tired, just slopes going up and down at a good speed ( 55 km/ h ).

A few minutes ahead , you will get to La Angostura- a small town which is perfectly ready to receive you with a huge hug.
 
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When my husband told me that it was 112 km. by bike, I thought it was a crazy idea, but the truth is that I did not even feel it. The landscape is incredible and the drops in the road are great fun!
Sandra Gabutti -
tourist


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