Merry Patagonian Christmas

January 12, 2015  •  1 Comment

The end of the year brings to most of us what we would call a time of reflection. Thanks to the calender gods many years ago, we can sense a closing is near and a change is set to take place. For some of us the last digit of the year changing may mean diddly-squat. But, for most it's an opportunity to reboot our goals and make resolutions for life changes.

This year, I decided to throw most of that universal garbage out the window. After all change shouldn't be limited to being re-evaluated when you are being trampled-over by holiday shoppers and getting fat over your accepting indulgence to consume carbs and sugar all while your family sits around and judges you on your decision to become an artist and why you're not having babies yet...yeah, no thank you. Thankfully, in this case it's always important to remember that we (meaning you and I) are in fact the only ones in charge of our own destiny. That is why I made the decision to celebrate the holidays the only way that felt right...by doing what I love and traveling. I figured what more of a gift it would be to wake-up on Christmas morning already content with no expectations except for the one's I wanted to create for myself. So, I decided to set forth my dreams by trekking Torres Del Paine in Patagonia, Chile.

Ever since I was a child I have dreamed of visiting Patagonia. I knew it wasn't an easy place to reach, but I am a firm believer that its not so much about the destination as much as it is more about the journey and I couldn't be more ready.

Several long ass flights, a boat and many bus rides later I had arrived. I made the decision this trip I was not going to over plan as I generally tend to do with my past journeys. I only had me, myself and I; therefore, I had the time and freedom to embrace what the universe had in store for me. Within the first hour of my trek to Torres Del Paine National Park I made friends with two Dutch gentleman that just so happened to be on a similar journey to catch Christmas morning sunrise at Las Torres. We decided to journey together along with another female solo traveler who was looking to make a friend. Somehow these three beautiful people came into my life last minute, I could have decided to make the 8 hour hike on my own, but I wasn't in the head space to question the gift, only to embrace it. And embrace it I did. After the long trek that day battling severe drastic climate changes and steep rocky inclines all while carrying 13 lbs on my back, we reached our destination for the day, set-up camp, shared my can of tuna with my new mountain family and stayed warm that Christmas Eve in the freezing cold with a generous bottle of rum being passed around and some local mantequilla de mani and crackers. This was the most unexpected Christmas Eve in my life and I could not have been more content to be sharing the real meaning of Christmas with three generous and wonderful strangers. The next morning, after only about four hours of the most uncomfortable sleep, we all woke at 4am to trek into the dark so we could reach Las Torres for Christmas morning sunrise. With the motivation of my new family as a team, we reached the top moments before sunrise. As I sought out the best location to photograph the dawn basking over the massive rock towers in the freezing snow I started to reflect on the past 24 hours. My whole body was sore from the long journey the day before, I was tired from the lack of sleep and I was unbearably stinky from sweating in my thermals, but I couldn't have more gracious for the present moment. It's amazing when you finally accomplish what you have been wanting for so long and worked so hard for. I could have given up. I could have let my fear of being alone stop me from going on this trip. I could have slept-in on Christmas morning and missed the sunrise....I could have done done all of these things, but I didn't. The universe ended up gifting me everything I needed without knowing. But then again, isn't that the way it always happens. I can detest what they say is always true... The best things come, when you least expect it.

I hope you enjoy this moment with me. Photos will never be able to fully capture the magic of this place rather then seeing it in person for yourself. But I can always try.

 

December 25th, 2014 Christmas Morning, Sunrise - Las Torres, Torres Del Paine, Patagonia, Chile

December 25th, 2014 Post Sunrise - Las Torres, Torres Del Paine, Patagonia, Chile

 

 

More to come:)


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