Respect and Protect Nature !
Philip Muller @standuplatino.com
humbled at Glacier Grey Torres del Paine Nationalpark in southern Patagonia Chile on his inflatable Naish SUP Board.
Conquerors of the Useless
“The regard for the planet shown in 180° South comes from the quiet, philosophical nature of the people profiled in the film, who realize there is more adventure in the preservation of nature than in its conquering.” -Bill White
You might have seen some of my Chile Adventure Dispatches in May of last year. Well, I am excited to share with you some of the actual assignment photography I got to do on this amazing trip.
Chile again and again in all the trips I have done keeps surprising me with it’s stunning beauty and magnificence of Nature. The variety of environments and the hospitality of the people is hard to match on this planet.
Backpacker Magazine made a very informative article in their January issue on this beautiful destination with detailed descriptions on the different trips available. If you miss the printed version, you can see them at Backpacker.com separated out by trip.
Honestly, the trip was one of my favorite and seeing these images, I want to go back soon.
I much appreciate the recognition of my Glacier Geike Super Moon Self Portrait as a winner within the PDN Faces Contest published in the PDN August issue.
As I am strapped into the airplane seat looking out of the window loosing myself in the ocean of clouds, I let the trip pass by again in my memory. I am moved, profoundly touched, somehow filled up with pure joy. Nature does that to me and I love it.
I so very much appreciate everybody who has partaken in this adventure trip. Big Thank You to the tourism board of the Puerto Natales area, the Chilean government and everybody who has volunteered their time to be part of this trip in front and behind the camera. All you guys were amazing. Thank you.
The images I shot will be published over time in different magazines and advertising campaigns worldwide and I am looking forward to sharing them with you all once released.
Looking down I see more glaciers and lakes filled with icebergs and I am imagining to be among them. Wow, what a sight … and then it hits me, wow, those icebergs are huge … even from this distance … the size of small city blocks …
Second day at the glacier and our mission is to explore the Western side. It’s a rainy, somewhat chilly morning and the 1 1/2 hour approach paddle alone promises to make the day more of a challenging adventure.
For starters, the hot water certainly helps to take the edge off of a wet, ice cold wetsuit…
Coming up around the ‘Big Rock Island’, the sheer presence of the glacier and its size is just impressive.
The forces of Nature can be humbling with a lake temperature of 0.5 degrees Celsius / 32.9 Fahrenheit. Gusty winds mixed in with rain and sleet. The camera gear is partially wet and my fingers start getting numb, but our excitement and curiosity keeps us all pushing closer to the glacier, with the occasional amazing window of sparkling sunlight.
Touching the ice is like reaching into another world, somehow there is an energy, it’s hard to describe.
It is the last day of the trip here in Southern Patagonia, hard to believe all the adventures we had … I even got to do a short paddle this morning … what an amazing trip.
We were very excited to be here, no matter the condition or temperature, we wanted to get close to the glacier and explore the icebergs along the way before night fall. Glacier ice is purely magnificent, sublime, and raw.
Experienced guides, like Rodrigo Bahamondez, can tell if an iceberg is unstable, but believing you are safe would be foolish. Proceeding with respect, caution and very open alertness certainly got our adventure juices flowing. Philip Muller from standuplatino.com had brought his board and proved to be almost fearless and certainly immune to the cold.
The distance to the glacier is misleading. The mountains and glaciers are so grand and big, it feels so close, like it’s right there, you keep paddling and it just gets bigger and bigger until when I was close enough in touchable range I was again in pure awe of the immenseness of the glacier wall.
We were humbled very fast and with the outmost respect moved along the ever changing face of the Glacier.
It was so pure. We stayed silent in awe, you just do not want to disrupt the vibe. When focusing in on the shapes, I felt like the glacier was talking to me. Ancient works of nature on display in all it’s beauty … constantly changing.
It’s been 5 years since my last trip to Glacier Grey, and its an adventure in itself just getting up here. Riding up Lago Grey with the tremendous Punta Bariloche and the Cordillera del Paine Mountain Range to the right, the boat captain showed me a postcard from the nineties. He said back then “you could hardly see the Nunatak behind the boat”, which is the sunlit rock formation sticking out of the ice on the left. “The Glacier was one big wall of ice.”
Apparently the ice has been melting faster and faster in the last ten years, and perhaps I’ll get to take some shots to show the differences over time. We were lucky since Hernan from Antares Patagonia Adventures set this trip up and got to show off together with Pedro ‘Red’ on how comfortable wilderness can be made with simple things.
I love coming back to this campsite just at the foot of the glacier, when the Autumn colors are in full peak.