Cementerio del Andinista: a cemetery dedicated to the mountaineers who perished climbing Mount Aconcagua

At 6,962 metres (22,840ft), Mt. Aconcagua is the tallest peak in the Americas and, nestled high in the Andes near the border of Argentina and Chile, it’s the highest mountain anywhere outside of Asia. To mountaineers, it’s not a very technical trek, as it doesn’t require any specialized equipment to reach the summit, even though the hike can be deceptively dangerous for those who are unprepared. Not by chance, Aconcagua is believed to have the highest death rate of any mountain in South America, around three a year, which has…

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Humberstone: A Chilean ghost town with an english name

Once a bustling mining and progressive town in the Atacama Desert, a few hundred kilometres from Chile’s borders with Peru and Bolivia, Humberstone has now become a disturbingly silent ghost town with no workers or residents on its streets. How did this happen? It was named after James Humberstone, a British chemical engineer who emigrated to South America in 1875. He made his fortune from saltpetre, which was dug out of caliche, the nitrate-rich crust of the desert, and used to make fertilizer. For a while in the late 19th…

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