Breakfast and checkout from the hotel. I was doing a four day trip up at El Chalten and I learned that the two other people that were doing this trek with me were flying in from Buenos Aires in the afternoon. Originally they were supposed to be in at 1:00 PM, but the airline changed the schedule at the last minute and they would not be arriving until nearly 4:00 PM (not a weather or mechanical delay mind, you - just a last minute schedule change). Jim and Susan (as I would learn would be my compatriots for El Chalten) were flying down on Aerolineas Argentinas and this was not the first time I had heard grumblings from people about the airline. So I had most of the day to wander around El Calafate. Nothing really exciting as I sat around people watching while eating lunch, explored some of the shops on the main drag of town, and wandered down to the shore of the Lago Argentino.
Eventually it was time to meet up with the transportation to El Chalten, head to the airport to pick up my new travelling companions, and then make the 3 hour ride to El Chalten. While the weather was decent in El Calafate, the closer we got to El Chalten, the drearier it became and by the time we got into town there was a steady, cold rain falling. Checked into our lodgings for the evening, headed out to dinner at Pangea restaurant (some good pizza available here). Still raining when we left, so while I was interested in walking around the small town some, the weather simply wasn't conducive to the activity so we headed back to the hotel. I still had to repack for our three day "backcountry" excursion and tomorrow was another early start for the Ice Trekking on Glaciar Torre.