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Argentina: One Remaining Question

An Overnight Train Trip Clear Across Patagonia

An Overnight Train Trip Clear Across Patagonia

Right smack in the middle of my trip, there is a question of how I’m going to get from Buenos Aires to San Carlos de Bariloche. Most people would probably elect to fly, but I want to minimize my exposure to Aerolineas Argentinas, a state-run airline with a laughably intricate labor union structure. There are a dozen or more unions, any of which can decide to call a strike any time. In 2011, they decided to fly us to Ezeiza’s Ministro Pistarini Airport rather than Aeroparque Jorge Newberry, necessitating a fifty dollar cab ride in the middle of the night to our hotel in the Congreso district.

(As currently planned, I will use Aerolineas to fly from Puerto Iguazu to Aeroparque, and Santiago, Chile, to Aeroparque. Let’s see how badly they screw me up this time.)

What I would like to do is to take an overnight bus to Viedma on the coast, and the Tren Patagonico from Viedma to Bariloche. Below is a map of the route:

Cutting Across the State of Rio Negro

Cutting Across the State of Rio Negro

Part of this was traveled by Paul Theroux on the trip covered by his book The Old Patagonian Express—except he got off at Ingeniero Jacobacci and transferred to a southbound narrow-gauge train from Jacobacci to Esquel.

The only problem is that I have not so far succeeded in making a reservation for the November 13 train. If they do not respond to my reservation request by October 15, I will take a bus from Buenos Aires to San Martín de los Andes. From there, I will take the scenic Ruta de Siete Lagos (Route of the Seven Lakes) to Bariloche. In either case, I have a reservation for Bariloche beginning November 14.

Either way, I’ll probably have a good time.



One thought on “Argentina: One Remaining Question

  1. Oh, yeah, you’ll have a good time either way. You’re a champ at not letting those unavoidables get under your skin and improvising.

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