En Route to Mendoza

Today we’re trading Chile’s little known Colchagua Valley Carmeneres for Argentina’s famed Mendoza Malbecs.  

March marks the start of harvest season in Mendoza. Having spent three harvests working with a winemaker in Oregon, I am giddy to be spying on Southern American crush pads while they’re full of action.

My backpack is perfect for trips into the wilderness when I leave all cosmetics at home. But it also works really well for travelling as a tourist to new countries and cities.

What’s going into my pack?

  1. Colorful summer dresses to take me from biking in the sun to tasting in wine cellars. Synthetic fabrics like Lycocel and recycled polyester keep me cool and dry during the day and transition easily for evening.Bright dress in sunshine
  2. Stylish layers for paseando by lamplight. A cotton/lycra blend jacket in charcoal grey is lightweight, goes with everything, and earns kudos across continents. I also bring three scarves: one silk, one cotton, and one synthetic. They’re not just for adding to an evening outfit–scarves double as beach towels, sun protection, and bus-ride blankets. They keep me warm and keep me cool, depending on how I use them.

    Red Scarf Huerquehue Natl Park

    My very favorite scarf: I never leave on a trip without it.  Thank you Auntie Mary and Uncle Rick! 

  3. I go nowhere without my Patagonia Nano Puff jacket. Not only does it keep me warm in all sorts of weather, it also stuffs easily into my bag like it’s not there, and makes an excellent pillow on the overnight bus. It was an investment piece I wouldn’t trade for the world.Patagonia Nano Puff Drinking Wine Oregon Coast
  4. Metallic gladiator sandals and lightweight trainers. These are the heavy-lifting items in my closet, keeping me on my feet exploring. I tend towards metallics for shoes because they’re a versatile neutral and add a bit of *bling* without carrying jewelry in my pack. I also bring along a cheap pair of flip flops. If I’m cooking in a hostel kitchen, trying to get clean in a dirty shower, or trekking to a campsite restroom, I don’t have to put real shoes on but still feel like there’s something between me and a layer of ick. If anything happens to them, they’re easily replaced. I thought it was funny to realize how few pictures the Llama takes of my feet.  Those pictures that show feet I am usually barefoot! Sorry…no photo for shoes!
  5.  I carry a crossbody Bagolini purse which has intelligently placed pockets to help me stay organized when paying bus fares, keeping track of passports, and having a notebook and pen handy. Because I often wear jewel tones, the bright turquoise goes with most all my outfits. It’s small and lightweight but sturdy, and is easy to keep close when I get a weird vibe from strangers. Thanks Mom!Bagolini



4 thoughts on “En Route to Mendoza

  1. The Wine Culturist says:

    Enjoy! Mendoza wine country is exquisitely beautiful! Make sure to do some vineyard visits, the Uco Valley is stunning if you can get down there.


    • thehighwayisgreen says:

      Hi Culturist! I wish we had been able to get to Valle de Uco! I had definitely underestimated what diversity we’d find in Mendoza. I think one of the largest takeaways was the need to go back! I’ll do a little more planning next time. Anywhere you’d recommend staying in Valle de Uco?

      Liked by 1 person

      • The Wine Culturist says:

        Yes, that’s a great solution, go back! There’s certainly nowhere cheap to stay and visiting wineries is a pain as they’re all spread out. If you want luxury accommodation, there’s plenty of choice! You’d need to hire a taxi guy ideally. Or another option is to try the new bus service – http://www.busvitivinicola.com/ – they do a long day trip on sundays but it allows you to visit 3 fab wineries. Or hire a car!


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