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Clintons take a break in Argentina

In this famed playground for the rich and famous, Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower caught the largest trout of their lives. Walt Disney artists copied enchanting forest backdrops for Bambi. Even Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid camped in Cholila Valley for a time.

A resort boasts of one of Argentina's most challenging golf courses.On Friday, President Clinton came here, golf clubs in tow.

Winding up a three-nation Latin American trip, the president and his wife Hillary settled in for an overnight stay at a Patagonia hotel with a rustic wooden decor and the feel of a posh ski resort. South of the equator, it's springtime in Argentina. Skies were sunny and temperatures cool.

Clinton's only official appearance is a visit today to Nahuel Huapi National Park - 1.6 million acres of mountains, forests, lakes and rivers - to speak about global climate changes. After a week away, he returns tonight to Washington.

The park is especially famous for its arrayan trees, also known as myrtle, with cinnamon-colored bark and dark green foliage. Their impressive eeriness was the inspiration for Disney's artists in the 1940s.

Taking in the clean air, the Clintons hiked among the trees Friday afternoon after enjoying a boat ride on Lake Nahuel Huapi.

Horseback riding is another popular resort activity. The president, in fact, was presented with two thoroughbred horses after a state dinner in Buenos Aires that wound up early Friday, but they didn't accompany him here. His jumbo jet is outfitted with special features, but no horse stalls.

Instead, the gift to the American people from President Carlos Menem will be transported to Washington later, although the White House wasn't sure exactly how yet. The National Park Service, which traditionally handles such presidential gifts, will stable the animals in the nation's capital.