The View from the Summit of Chacaltay...
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Panoramic photo by Arroz Marisco EXPERT MAESTRO Taken 10:56, 25/05/2012 - Views loading...

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The View from the Summit of Chacaltaya (5,421m)

The World > South America > Bolivia

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A relatively short walk from the now defunct ski-lift area will take one to reach an astonishing altitude of 5,421m in about half an hour, commanding an almost uninterrupted view of La Paz valley and the surrounding mountains.

Originally topped with a glacier that had all but melted away by late 2009, now the mountain hut and the ski resort of Chacaltaya is left to tell the sorry tale of the effect of global warming. It is envisaged that within 15 years or so the Andes will see enough of its massive glaciers retreating to threaten the water supply to the entire region.

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Nearby images in Bolivia

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A: The Derelict Ski Resort at Chacaltaya

by Arroz Marisco, 430 meters away

Standing forlonly the now derelict ski lift at Chacaltaya rattles in the occasional gust that sweeps ...

The Derelict Ski Resort at Chacaltaya

B: Sunrise over Huayna Potosí at 5200m

by Arroz Marisco, 8.3 km away

The sun has finally risen after a long cold and sleepless night at this 5,200m high mountain hut righ...

Sunrise over Huayna Potosí at 5200m

C: The Bus Terminal of La Paz

by Arroz Marisco, 15.5 km away

The Central Bus Terminal will always remind me to be vigilant as I had my very first experience of be...

The Bus Terminal of La Paz

D: Clearing Sky over Cerro Mulamaniya

by Arroz Marisco, 16.0 km away

I didn't realize we had three high mountain passes today - after the first pass at 5100m, we thought ...

Clearing Sky over Cerro Mulamaniya

E: Plaza Uyuni La Paz

by Erbol Digital, 16.4 km away

Plaza Uyuni La Paz

F: La Paz

by Steffen Leidel, 16.8 km away

La Paz

G: Laguna Tuni

by Arroz Marisco, 17.0 km away

The aquamarine Laguna Tuni is an important source of water for the highest capital in the world, la P...

Laguna Tuni

H: Where is Río Paya Huichinta ?

by Arroz Marisco, 17.5 km away

The valley on this side of the pass ia supposed to hold the river Rio Paya Huichinta that drains into...

Where is Río Paya Huichinta ?

I: Transportistas blocked roads in La Paz

by Peter Deselaers, 18.3 km away

Transport unions blocked roads and street in Bolivia's La Paz on May 7 and 8 to protest against a mun...

Transportistas blocked roads in La Paz

J: The Valley of Caterpillars

by Arroz Marisco, 18.3 km away

The clouds have now coalesced and the storm is about to unleash its full force of elements. The groun...

The Valley of Caterpillars

This panorama was taken in Bolivia, South America

This is an overview of South America

South America makes up the southern half of the Americas and a large part of Latin America. It's home to the world's longest mountain range, biggest waterfall and largest river -- even these mammoths pale in comparison to the stunning variety of life forms thriving in the rainforest.

To the northwest, off the coast of Ecuador, lie the Galapagos Islands, which are unique for hosting species not found anywhere else on earth. These were the subject of study for Charles Darwin in his theory of evolution, which he himself said will require proof in every single case.

The main languages in South America are Spanish and Portugese, which basically tells you which European countries colonized the place. The South American wars of independence took place over two decades in the early 19th century, led by Simon Bolivar of Venezuela and Jose san Martin of Argentina.

Following liberation from Portugal and Spain, South America took off into its own development, capitalizing on the rich deposits of oil, gold, copper, silver and tango musicians.

Brazil is the largest country in South America and home to one of the world's best parties, Carnaval. Have you heard of samba music? How about bossa nova? Maybe dancing for three days straight?

I can't say enough good things about South America. All the world's continents have amazing secrets and treasures laying in wait for your discovery, but in South America... just have a look at our pictures while you're waiting for online confirmation of your plane tickets to hit your inbox.

Text by Steve Smith.

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