Tag Archives: patagonia

On Thursday we begin our 2014 Patagonian Icecap Adventure

Thursday we leave for Argentina and one of the last true wilderness areas on earth, the Patagonian Icecap. Who knows what adventures it will bring? What surprises it has in store for us?

It’s been a long time coming, our last trip was in 2011 (and what a glorious expedition that was!). This year we attempt the “Ruta de las Nunataks”, a rarely done route. We could only find one reference to it on the internet. This route visits Nunatak Witte and Nunatak Viedma traversing down the western side of the great “Campo de Hielo Continental Sur” Icefield. From that icefield (the largest outside of the polar regions) hundreds of glaciers feed the pampas of Argentina and westwards to the fiords of Chile, including the famous Perito Moreno, Viedma and Upsala glaciers.… Read the rest

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4 Insights the mountains and wilderness have shown me in 2011

As the dawn on a new year breaks it’s a good time to reflect on the past 12 months. 2011 has been unforgettable in so many ways. There were ups and downs, of course (it is the mountains after all…..ha ha!), but experiences in the Sierra Nevada and Patagonia have shown me some insights I thought I’d share with you.

1. You can make a difference to your world no matter how small it seems!

Mule, Muleteers and Mountaineers making a difference

Mule, Muleteers and Mountaineers

One day in August a small team of like minded enthusiasts (a mule, 2 Muleteers and 3 Mountaineers) took tools and materials up to 3000m. They did some voluntary work, cleaning, painting and restoring an old mountain hut in the Sierra Nevada.… Read the rest

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Video from our Patagonian Icecap Expedition 2011

This year our expedition was blessed by windless and sunny conditions, unusual on the Patagonian Icecap. A far cry from the year before. We managed to complete the full itinerary and had some of the most amazing mountain and wilderness views any of us had ever seen.

Here is a short 10 minute video from the trip. I can’t wait to return. The place is infectious! Consequently we are taking bookings for 2012. Have a look at our Patagonian Icecap webpage for details.

Read the rest
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The debilitating effects of Snowblindness – a personal experience

Becoming snowblind is one of the most debilitating hazards of being in the high mountains. This article relates my own personal experience on the Patagonian Icecap with this painful condition. I am not a medical expert and haven’t read up on all the facts, so if you want the medical stuff then do a Google Search. I relate below only my own experience.

Snowblind. Not a pretty sight!

Snowblind. Not a pretty sight!

I guess after spending over 40 years walking in the mountains I’ve been lucky not to have contracted snowblindness before. Sure, I might have had some mild symptoms before, some sore eyes that I always put down to the wind. But in truth I didn’t recognise these as being snowblind. That was all to change during our last expedition to the Patagonian Icecap in November 2010.  … Read the rest

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The best snow wall construction to eliminate drifting on the leeward side

Sometimes a basic snow wall is not sufficient to keep the elements at bay. The wind can drop spindrift on the leeward side thus burying the tents. Is there a solution in the way we can construct snow walls that would make them more efficient?

I asked this question on the Worldwide Expedition professional group on LinkedIn

Hastily erected snow walls

Hastily erected snow walls

Last year on the Patagonian Icecap we built snow walls as normal. In high winds spindrift gets dumped on the leeward side when the wind hits irregularities in the surface ie snow walls. This gave another problem in that we had good snow walls but the tents behind them got buried! Do you think there is any way the shape or construction of the wall can be improved to eliminate this occurrence?Read the rest

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