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La Pampa, argentine flatlands

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The vast pampas argentinasMap of the pampa region National and international visitors, many of whom are europeans, have found in La Pampa an enjoyable place where they can spend quiet holidays with their families. PAMPA (from the quechua indian word 'flatland') spreads from Buenos Aires to the north, west and south. Once, inhabited by Gauchos, these plains were the ground of visciuos battles between natives and criollos. Gauchos descendants of Spanish conquistadores and aborigines (natives) of the Pampas were considered to be outcasts and lived solitary lives, often socially marginated. The pampas is the name of a geographical region that extends through the midsection of Argentina. It covers the western part of the province of Buenos Aires, the southwestern part of Cordoba and Santa Fe, the southeastern part of San Luis and almost the entire province of La Pampa.

Stay at local ranches

A gaucho cooking asado in the openWhen considering La Pampa or the pampas region it is inevitable to think about Gauchos. If anything, they were the ones that populated this vast area more than any othe r part of the country and they confronted natives almost daily. Through their existence, Gauchos became experts (still are) at handling boleadoras, a 3 hard-rock leather ball tied to a rope that was used for hunting for the most part. They also developed a taste for music in spite of their rough life and manners and used their creative nature to challenge other gauchos at imprompt "Payadas". It was like a duel of guitars and sang poems.

Typical ranch in the pampasThey would carry everywhere a particular type of knife called Facon and by living in the open in close contact with cattle they became used to eating beef cooked in an open fire. These are the first historical records of what later became one of argentine's favorite weekend passtimes: barbecuing meat, that is, grilling an asado. While in La Pampa, it is a good idea to try to find a local ranch for accomodations so as to better become acquainted with argentina's country side and all its rich gaucho traditions.

At a ranch, visitors are invited to ride horses, witness gaucho's skills, enjoy argentine's famous beef (asado, where most of the animals organs get cooked) and have the same landowners as companions. Ranches can accomodate anywhere from 6 to 20 people and are usually very spacious. They may extend from 1000 has to 20,000 has and their main purpose could be cattle breeding or agriculture. The pampas has two distinctive areas called 'pampa humeda' and 'pampa seca'. The first one covers the northern area while the second one is much larger and covers the southwestern part. What is known as pampa seca became a more fertile soil in the last couple of decades due to dramatic climate changes. However, some of the most prosperous and riches lands are in the northeastern section in places like Pergamino.

The pampa humeda is rich in fertile soil
 
Luro Park, natural life reservoir

Places for trekking, camping or huntingLocated 35 km away from Santa Rosa, Luro Park consists of 3 different environments; the Lake area, the low mountain area and the 'medanos'. The 3 combine to create a wonderful natural habitat for animal life. The Park is completely enclosed, surrounded by a wire fence of 2 1/2 mts high. From its 7600 has only 1200 are open to the public. Pedro Luro bought the land at the trun of the century with the purpose of making a self-enclosed hunting area, just as the ones he knew from his trips to Europe, a "coto". He also brought from his trips a few new...

Llanuras pampeanasanimal species, like the jabali, that reproduced with no limits. The "casco" (central building of the ranch) was finished in 1910 and came to be known as "The Castle" for it had been built following european castles styles. Mr. Luro would regularly welcome foreign visitors and important local figures attracted by the prospects of great hunting escapes. In 1965 the whole area was purchased by the State and turn into a wild life reservoir. A little over 300 km to the south of Luro Park, there is "The National Park Lihuel Calel" (10,000 habs) created in 1977. Lihuel Calel is a native word for 'mountain of life'. Local animal life was the subject of a very comprehensive study performed by the United States between 1986 and 1989

Historically, this area of Argentina has been the battleground where colonial and later federal forces confronted the native indians. It appears that the conquistadores found originally two different group of natives which the called "pampas". Starting in the 17th century, the area was strongly influenced by the arrival of the Tehuelches, later the Araucanos and finally the Pehuenches. The final battles happened between the years 1876 and 1884 when Namuncura -a highly regarded chief (cacique)- abandoned his fight. The 'desert campaigns' that started around 1833 thus came to an end.

Raising cattle in the pampas

Fishing in La Pampa

Northern pampas with lakes and water sportsRiding horses in a ranch in the Pampas There are many small ponds and lakes where fresh water fishing takes place. Usually, fishes are of a small size and species vary between 'pejerrey, bagres, mojarrita, lisas, tarariras and dientudos. Some lakes might reach over 4mts depth while others are quite shallow. Due to strong winds some require a lifesaver mandatory. Also, in many cases, permits are needed. The region of the pampas became important historically after the discovery of the "salinas" in the 17th century. The commercial value and its applications -mostly to conserve beef and other foods that were now being "cured"- pushed the government and the colony to fight the indians wherever they were even though it took almost two hundred years to finally conquer the area. While many isolated instances of conflicts erupted since the 1600's it was not until 1810 when the first of the organized military campaigns took place. Natives adopted horses and acquired greater movility and developed commercial relationships with tribes and landowners to the west, extending to Chile. Natives thus, became a problem as they would try to steal cattle from the eastern pampas and ride it to the west in what became known as "malones" and "ganado cimarron".


Map of La Pampa, Argentina

Discussing the Pampas in our forum

* La Pampa trip
* Buying a farm in Argentina
* Horses in Buenos Aires
* Ethnic make up of argentines
* Polo and horses
* Ranch visit
* Work in an estancia
* Gauchos
* Yaks in Argentina
* Argentina and agriculture
* Agribusiness


Weather La Pampa

* Current weather in La Pampa - Close to Tandil
* La Pampa historical weather patterns

* Hotels in La Pampa

  

Join us in our forum to discuss La Pampa and the pampas region

We have shown you some of the most interesting aspects to be explored in this State. If you are interested in making a trip to Argentina and in particular to this region we recommend that you fill out our 'no commitment' vacation planner so that we can provide you with a more precise idea on the cost of a trip.  It is possible to combine circuits and tours in this State with circuits in other States as well as neighboring countries, like Chile, Uruguay, Paraguay and even Bolivia for prolonged stays. Trips may range from just a few days to many weeks. Upon reception of the reservation form we will be in a better position to let you know detailed scheduling for a trip as well as specific activities that can be arranged in the area, plus all the information regarding how to get your air tickets, payments, travel insurances, transfers from where you are and the cost of the tour or vacation as per your choices. Please do not hesitate to contact us.