Image of Guanacos in Patagonia, near El Calafate. Photo by Eduardo Libby

The Patagonian Steppe

Guanacos and Rheas are iconic animals of Patagonia, and a chance to watch and photograph them in their natural habitat is something one shouldn’t miss…

There is a very nice wildlife watching tour departing from El Calafate twice a day. We chose the afternoon ride that would likely give us better light for our photos. A private wildlife preserve up the hills to the south and a road that follows a stream for miles were the perfect place to draw wildlife at close range.

Most large animals were a bit shy though and I had to resort to long telephoto zoom lenses to show them at a good size in the frame. Most of my photos were taken at a 400-600 mm focal length (35 mm equivalent).

View of the Patagonian Steppe and azure-colored Lake Argentino. Photo by Eduardo Libby
The Patagonian Steppe and azure-colored Lake Argentino.

 

Image of a Patagonian Long-tailed Meadowlark near El Calafate, Argentina. Photo by Eduardo Libby
Patagonian Long-tailed Meadowlark.

 

image of Lesser Rheas grazing on a distant hill. Photo by Eduardo Libby
Lesser Rheas grazing on a distant hill.

 

Image of Hereford cattle in a farm near El Calafate. Photo by Eduardo Libby
Hereford cattle in a farm near El Calafate. Argentinian grills are superb.

 

Image of Guanacos in Patagonia, near El Calafate. Photo by Eduardo Libby
Guanaco herds are not stopped by fences and roam both open steppes and farms.

 

Image of a Chulengo or young Guanaco. Photo by Eduardo Libby
A Chulengo or young Guanaco.

 

Image of hills and open spaces of Patagonia at sunset. Photo by Eduardo Libby
The hills and open spaces of Patagonia at sunset. One of the memorable views from our trip.

 

After having a few glasses of Argentinian Malbec wine, assorted cheese, and Patagonian style lamb stew at a former Estancia farmhouse. We headed back to the hills closest to town in order to watch the sunset over Lake Argentino: a fitting end for a great ride.

 

 

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