Saturday, June 4, 2011

CHACALTAYA – A place where ski meets the Sky

It is the world’s highest ski resort situated at a dizzying height with an elevation of 5421m above the sea level, making it difficult for people to breathe normally. The place boasts of attracting many thrill seeking skiers from around the world visiting the place every ski season.
Chacaltaya []

Chacaltaya is built on top of a glacier and is just 30 km away from the Bolivian capital city of La Paz at an altitude of dizzying 17,388 feet with a panoramic view of Lake Titicaca and the City of La Paz on the horizon.
A dreamer named Raul Posnansky Lipmann founded the ski resort of Chacaltaya in late 1930s. However, after his death little has been done to improve the infrastructure of the place. Therefore, the only road to Chacaltya has remained a narrow dirt road. In this resort, skiing is done on one main run and on one chairlift. The classic ski lift is capable of taking you to a point, which is around 395 feet below the actual summit.  The rope tow was the first one of its kind in South America. The road leading towards the base of the 200-meter drop is reached by a very small and narrow road, which was built in 1930s. As of 2009, skiing is limited to a 600-foot stretch .
Don´t slam the door
Benjamin Hull
Chacaltaya as a ski resort is unique in many ways. It is the world’s highest lift-served ski area and the northernmost ski area in Latin America. Again, the ski season in Chacaltay is also unique. Though ski resorts in other South American countries thrive from July to September, in Chacaltya the best time for skiing is from January to March when the snow is not that hard and rough, So Chacaltay is the only ski resort in South America to have a ski season corresponding to that in North America.
La Paz, Bolivia
In reaching the ski resort of Chacaltaya, the city of La Paz serves as the best camp for all the skiers who are desperate to enjoy the thrill of skiing at the world’s highest skiing spot.  La Paz, itself unique in the sense that it is the world’s highest capital city, acts perfectly as the gateway to the famous Chacaltaya ski resort standing high with open arms to embrace all those who look for thrill and adventure at a height where plane also do not fly in many countries.
However, the alarming news about this unique place is that global warming, climate change has posed a serious threat to its very existence, and now it is on the verge of destruction. The glacier has, largely started melting. By looking at the speedy melting and disappearances of Chacaltaya glacier, scientists are predicting that in a few years, this unique creation of nature and man will vanish altogether and only memories will remain.

1 comment:

Bulgari said...

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