Patagonia is one of those places that pulls on your heart as it slowly seeps into your veins. For me, it is achingly desolate, solitary and beautiful in its aloneness. It is a place of bones; those you find on the brown steppes, those you see in the backbone-like ridges of the mountains and those you feel in the hard, “now-bones” of trees left behind in petrified forests.
And although the silences here are as vast as the landscapes, in the background you could swear that you hear music: the blustery winds that seem to blow to the beats of tango rhythms, which you soon realize are not so much audible as felt within you; the quickening pulse of your blood.
Patagonia is very nearly at the end of the world, tucked away at the bottom of South America, spanning Argentina and Chile. It covers 300,000 square miles of Argentina—about a third of the country—and another 131,275 square miles of Chile, nearly half of that nation. But Patagonia doesn’t appear to care about that; it’s a district unto itself, unaware of any human-drawn borders. It has barely been settled since humans first arrived tens of thousands of years ago and is, as Bruce Chatwin, author of In Patagonia, put it, “the farthest place to which man walked from his place of origin.”
Words can hardly do the cobalt fjords; blue glaciers; dusty, backwater oases; pristine rivers; stunning national parks; sweeping steppes; and snowcapped, jagged peaks here justice. That’s why I’d like you to watch the short film below, titled Patagonia 8K. Timestorm Films producer Martin Heck traveled almost 5,000 miles from Santiago to Punta Arenas in six weeks, capturing roughly 100,000 still frames that he combined into this ultra-high-definition, time-lapse video.
Watch Patagonia 8K full screen. I think the images and music will pull on your heart and pulse in your veins, almost like the real place does.
Here’s to finding your true places and natural habitats,