Antarctica and Patagonia, Chile – Sunrises and sunsets!

Patagonia is a region of South America that is located in the southern part of both Argentina and Chile. The largest part is in Argentina but there are 600,000 sq. miles in Chile with the Andes being the border between the two countries. After finishing my trip to Antarctica, I spent another week here with our guide, Daniel Kordan, and six other people. Five of us were on the Antarctica trip and the sixth, a Taiwanese young man, joined us for this part of the trip.

This was our group. Seven people, including our guide, with seven different nationalities. Pictured left to right is me kneeling, with Erik from Taiwan behind me, Daniel from Russia, Joaquin from Spain but now living in Austin, Ibrahim from Saudi Arabia, Michel from Canada and Deborah from the UK. Our driver, not pictured here, the eighth person in our group was from Chile. During the week, we had several other guides join us for a couple of days or less. One was our puma guide. More about him later.

The eastern part of Patagonia in Argentina is largely desert while the western portion in Chile is mountains, fiords, rivers and lakes. The primary point of interest is Torres del Paine National Park where we spent lot of our time. The Paine mastiffs are the most famous spires in the park.

The Paine towers are the three peaks in the center left of this image.

When you see a picture of Patagonia, the Torres del Paine towers are generally what you see.

An image of me on our last day picnic as I shot the previous image. Thanks Joaquin Delgado.

Punta Arenas was our starting and ending point for this trip. It’s a five hour drive south to the national park. We were up at 4:45 or earlier every morning for sunrise.

There was forest fires here several years ago and, therefore, there are a lot of dead trees to use as foreground images for our sunrise pictures. At the end of the day, we did the reverse. We’d have dinner then go looking for some place for a sunset image. We weren’t as successful with sunsets because there was a lot of overcast days and finding a good sunset was more of a challenge. We had several nights of thick, low cloud cover. We did find a few. This one with some wild horses.

After spending the early morning shooting sunrises, we generally went back to our hotel for breakfast and then most of us went back to bed for a couple of hours of nap time. After lunch, we’d spend time reviewing and critiquing images with our guide then we went looking for some other good daytime images. After sunset, we rarely got back to our hotel before 10:30 or 11pm. Then we were up again the next morning before 5am.

A double waterfall. It’s not Niagara Falls, Iquasu Falls on the Brazil/Argentine border or Victoria Falls in Africa.
A small hotel that you had to walk across the bridge to reach.

Most of the lakes were a deep green. They were created by melt from the glaciers. One afternoon a local gaucho, the owner of our hotel, and another guide, ran some horses along the shore for us to photograph with the mountains in the background.

In my next blog, I’ll show you some images of the wildlife our puma guide located.

Hope you are enjoying these posts!

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