Bolivian Road of Death

Last year when I visited Bolivia I wanted to go downhill with a bike on the “World’s most Dangerous Road” also know as North Yungas RoadGrove’s RoadCoroico RoadCamino de las YungasEl Camino de la MuerteRoad of Death or Death Road. I have done it and I am still here. It was a great experience and the scenery is just amazing. I am used to the roads here in alps and the cliffs but mostly there is some safety features on the road, that is not the case in Bolivia. The only thing that might save you if you drive over the cliff are the trees and the jungle that might soften the fall, but the walls are so steep that probably you would fall several hundred meters down. Let me tell you a few facts about the road.

The Road of Death is a 69-kilometre long road leading from La Paz to Coroico, 56 kilometres northeast of La Paz in the Yungas region of Bolivia. It is legendary for its extreme danger and in 1995 the Inter-American Development Bank christened it as the “world’s most dangerous road”. One estimate is that 200 to 300 travellers were killed yearly along the road. The road includes crosses marking many of the spots where vehicles have fallen.


No room for error

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Mauna Kea – "world's tallest mountain"

Mauna kea means “white mountain” in the Hawaiian language, a reference to its summit being regularly covered by snow in winter. The peak of Mauna Kea is 4,207 m above sea level but 10,203 m above its base on the floor of the Pacific Ocean. It is the world’s tallest mountain by this measure, taller than Mount Everest, which is the highest mountain above sea level.

Mauna Kea is in the post-shield stage of volcanic evolution, having made the transition from the shield stage about 200,000 to 250,000 years ago. At that time, its appearance was probably quite similar to that of its neighbor Mauna Loa today, a smooth shield volcano with a large summit caldera. Following the transition, eruptions became more explosive in character, resulting in the formation of numerous overlapping cinder cones which eventually filled and completely obscured the caldera. These cinder cones now form the peaks at the summit of Mauna Kea, with several of them exceeding 13,500 feet (4,100 m) in elevation. After several hundred thousand years of slowly building itself up by volcanic activity, the mountain’s height is slowly decreasing now as its massive weight depresses the Pacific seafloor beneath it.

Snowfall often occurs at elevations above 3,400 m during the period from November through March. During particularly cold and wet winters, which are usually linked to La Niña, a snowpack several feet (1 m) deep may remain in the summit region above 4,000 m for weeks or months. This permits skiing and other snow-play activities on the slopes of the cinder cones.

The summit of Mauna Kea has been a celestial observatory since ancient times and is considered to be one of the best astronomical sites in the world. For this reason it is home to many of the world’s leading astronomical observatories. The summit is above approximately 40% of Earth’s atmosphere and 90% of the water vapor, allowing for exceptionally clear images of the night sky. Additionally, the peak is well above the inversion layer, which leads to approximately 300 clear nights per year. (Source: Wikipedia)

The thing that fascinated me the most was that you can go swimming in the Pacific and about 2 hours later you are standing on top of Mauna Kea about 4207 m higher with temperatures well below freezing and yea if you have brought your skis along you could go skiing.

 

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Haleakala Volcano, Maui, Hawaii

Haleakala is a massive shield volcano that forms more than 75% of the Hawaiian Island of Maui. Surrounding and including the “crater” is Haleakala National Park, which is mostly wilderness. Haleakala’s summit is 3055 m above sea level. The best time to visit the summit is early in the morning to catch the sunrise. There is an excellent road to the top and the scenery is breathtaking.

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On this picture you can see the Mauna Kea Volcano on the Big Island of Hawaii (4207 m)

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Friday trip to Kredarica

The whole thing started on Thursday at about 16h. I was thinking what to do on Friday and in the meantime I was talking to my friend something about Triglav. In the next few minutes I checked the weather forecast for the Alps and it was an optimistic forecast (sunshine and some north winds, but quite cold). I decided to call my friend Kume :) and tell him about my plans for Friday. He just said, when do I have to wake up. We left Ljubljana at 5am and started from Krma at 6.30am. It was only -5°C in the valley. When we arrived at 2000m the wind started and it was pretty cold, it didn’t stop all the way to the top, to Triglavski dom at Kredarica which is 2514m high. It was -13°C with wind chill at about -25°C. It was not possible to go all the way to Triglav because of the strong winds and the clouds up there.

It was really nice day and I’m happy that a few photos are “usable” :)….my fingers almost froze up there.

…we used crampons…


…we started in Krma…which is down there somewhere…


…Triglav in the back…


…there is still some life…


…again Triglav on the left…


And for the and for all those who like panoramas. Firs one was taken somewhere on the way up, and the second is from Kredarica.


… Triglav…


…Triglavski dom na Kredarici, chapel, wind power generators…

Matterhorn, Switzerland

A few more photos of this beautiful mountain. It probbably is the one of the most spectacular, but it only looks like this from the Swiss side of it, on the Italian side it’s just dull. I took photos at night, in the morning, in the evening… One photo I allready published, that one was taken at night. Now I’m posting the rest of them.

…Matterhorn at 7am…

…Matterhorn at 8am…

…Matterhorn at 9am…

… Matterhorn at 9am from a different location…

…HDR (early morning)…

…the most famous place to photograph Matterhorn is from a bridge in Town center…(this is HDR)…