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On the Other Side of the Mountain Range

   
 Estimated reading time: 2 min. Texts Karina Jozami   Photos Jorge González
Lakes Escondido and Fagnano Circuit

We left the city to visit two natural treasures in Tierra del Fuego: Lake Escondido and Lake Fagnano.

After enjoying the attractions of town, we resolved to stop looking at the sea in order to behold the mountain range once again and to explore other spots on the island. Very early in the morning, we left the capital of the province following National Route 3 northwards, leaving behind the Tierra Mayor Valley and the entrance to the ski resort located on Mount Castor. The bogs spread to both sides of the road as we got along the bends across the Tierra del Fuego Andes. But the crossing itself is the Garibaldi Pass, one of the most interesting points on the tour, standing at 450 m.a.s.l. We had traveled along 60 kilometers when Lake Escondido surprised us in the middle of the mountain range and at the foot of the Garibaldi.

The beauty of this water body and the entire scenery around it is impressive indeed. We stopped at the vantage point in order to take some pictures and watch everything more quietly. Afterwards, we continued along the winding road that borders the mountain walls up to the other end of the lake, where the Bronzovic sawmill is located.
Lakes Escondido and Fagnano Circuit
Its chimney is constantly smoking and this venue represents the main economical activity in the center of the island. The road had already started to go down, abandoning the mountains in order to enter the high plateau. Forty kilometers ahead, there was the head of Lake Fagnano, which with 100 kilometers of length is the largest lake in Tierra del Fuego. It is also an excellent spot for fishing.

A Little Farther Ahead
Lakes Escondido and Fagnano Circuit
Skirting the lakeshore, the picturesque District of Tolhuin, which grows at the foot of Mount Michi, is reached. Before going on with the tour, it is worthwhile making a stop to have a cup of coffee at the famous bakery called La Unión or have a rest at Kaiken Inn, which displays the best postcard of the Fagnano. Due to its privileged geographical location between the mountain range and the plains, Tolhuin enjoys a micro climate that makes it stand out from other areas on the island. In addition to all this, the charm of the native forest growing around this environment may be visited on horseback, on hiking tours, mountain bike rides and other adventure activities.

Another excellent choice is to continue towards the North along National Route 3 and then turn left into Complementary Route H, 35 kilometers from Tolhuin. This road leads to Lakes Chepelmut and Yehuin, two other precious natural nooks that may also enjoyed by staying a couple of days at the local estancias.
Lakes Escondido and Fagnano Circuit
Useful Data
Recommendations
This area of National Route 3 features many dangerous bends. Drive very carefully and pay special attention to signposts which indicate drivers to stop.
 
Contact
Dirección de Turismo
Av. de Los Selk'nam 80 (9420) Tolhuin - Tierra del Fuego - Argentina
e-mail
 
 
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