5 April 2009

Photo reel from El Chaltén



[Above] After a freezing night at the base-camp of Cerro Torre I woke to find it hiding cowardly behind a think traffic of slow-moving clouds. Cerro Torre was once thought to be the world's hardest mountain to climb - even though the summit is an ordinary 3,128 meters.



[Above] The valley on the way to Cerro Torre base-camp.



[Above] I like skies.



[Above] Personally I would never vandalise nature like this - even vegetation is a form of life that deserves it's own respect. But I must admit, it was nice to seen a friendly, smiling face after trekking with a heavy backpack for 3 hours.



[Above] Cerro Torro (again). At the base camp I met a bunch of German and Swiss people who had been waiting four days for the clouds to pass. They said this was the best view they have had of it so far - where in actual fact only a mere outline of the bottom of the mountain can be seen through the density of water vapour.



[Above] The trek from Cerro Torro to the viewpoint of the Fitz Roy mountain takes you past a couple of milky-turquoise lagoons of glacier water (though the colour isn't particularly evident in this photo). The beautiful, cloudy color of this "meltwater" occurs due to the refraction of sunlight against the sediment which is suspended within. This tiny powder results from the grinding of the moving glaciers against the rock beneath them, i.e. glacial migration.



[Above] Río de las Vueltas (River of Loops) in the valley on my route back to El Chaltén.

The Fitz Roy mountain is one of the main features of the trek through the mountain-range shadowing El Chaltén. Unfortunately the misty skies never afforded me the opportunity to glance upon them. I later learned that the mountain is sometimes called Cerro Chaltén after the Tehuelche word meaning "smoking mountain," due to a cloud that usually forms in the top. Poo!


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I'm back in Buenos Aires.

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