I started very early this morning; it was dark when we began to hike. The goal was to reach a location for a sunrise that was about five kilometers uphill from the beginning of the trail. We made it on time, got the shot and kept on going. A couple of kilometers farther the path got more extensive, and we reached an area of plains where the peaks in front revealed themselves in a magical way.
There it was, the Fitz Roy in all its glory. It felt unbelievably close, almost as if I could touch it. I am here with two friends, also photographers, and this is the Los Glaciares National Park, in Patagonia.
At that moment, for the second time on this trip, I had tears in my eyes. As a travel photographer, I’ve had the opportunity to see and photograph many places. However, I’ve never felt such an unbelievably soulful connection in any other part of the world. Patagonia had been on my bucket list for a long time; I always dreamed of coming here, but for one reason or another something always got in the way. Perhaps that was the reason for such an emotional reaction—that, the undeniable raw beauty of this part of the world just got me astonished.
We spent about two weeks making photos in Patagonia. We roamed around between Argentina and Chile chasing landscapes, sunrises, sunsets, and exploring. It was a fantastic trip and here are some favorite locations and pictures.
Torres del Paine National Park, Chile
Torres del Paine was the first place we visited. Torres del Paine is probably one of the most important national parks in Chile. The area is vast, and the opportunities for photography are top-notch.
While most visitors come to see what
Puerto Natales is the closest town to the park, and we traveled from there on different days during the stay. Unfortunately, the weather did not cooperate; we had gale-force gusts during the first portion that made it almost impossible to stand outside the car, followed by rain. It got better the last couple of nights, and with that, we were able to access some areas to photograph in good light.
Patagonia is just like that: the weather changes and it is not predictable, but for me, it is part of the charm.
Glacier Perito Moreno, El Calafate, Argentina
From Puerto Natales, we traveled to El Calafate in Argentina. This is a lovely town that hosts great restaurants, accommodations and also one of the major commercial airports in the area. But the main reason to be here is the Perito Moreno Glacier. Located just 48 miles from El Calafate, the glacier is
This glacier is just massive; the ice formation encompasses about 97 square miles, and its walls rise over 240 feet above the surface of Argentino Lake. I spent a morning strolling the walkways, taking photos and just watching the impressive scenery. Observing and trying to catch a rupture is also a classic. I experienced several small ones; the sound of the ice breaking is just astounding and something to remember. I wish I had witnessed and photographed a large one, but there is always the next time.
Puerto Rio Tranquilo, Chile
The journey continued north and back to Chile. We drove around 900 kilometers to see the Marble Caves in Lake General Carrera
Besides the marble hollows, the landscape and vistas of the surroundings are also very compelling.
Los Glaciares National Park, El Chalten, Argentina
El Chalten is a small mountain village located on the riverside of Rio de las Vueltas in Santa Cruz Province. El Chalten is also known as Argentina’s Trekking Capital, mainly for being a popular base from which to hike the numerous trails around this section of the national park.
The gems here are the Cerro Fitz Roy and Cerro Torre. The peaks are uncommonly unique in shape and can be seen from different places. But besides the favorite trails, other sights are Torre Glacier, Laguna Capri, Piedras Blancas Glacier, Chorrillo del Salto, and Laguna De Los Tres.
Naturally, this is where we experienced more trekking and hard paths to access good photo locations.
Making photos in Patagonia can be challenging. It really depends how deep you want to go or do. Some of the locations are easy to access, but other ones require long and uphill hiking trails and some commitment. Let me tell you, beyond the photograph, experiencing a sunrise in places like this is difficult to describe with words, but the reward surpasses the effort by a long shot.
Patagonia enchanted me, and now it ranks among the best landscape places I’ve ever been to. I’ll be back next year in April, and you could join me. The 2021 Patagonia Photo Tour will be incredible; I am expecting to announce it early 2020. At this time I am finishing up the itinerary and pricing; this will be a small group. If you want to join me, I strongly recommend that you join the waiting list here.
Lastly, most of the photos for this trip were made with the Fuji GFX 50s. I also had with me the X-T3, which I mainly used when I needed a long reach. My NiSi set of grads and ND filters were also heavily used, along with a sturdy tripod.
That’s all for now. Hope you enjoyed the photographs of Patagonia. As always, feel free to comment. For licensing information or to purchase prints of the photos, click here.