There is something about nature at its wildest that strums a cord within me. As a guy, what is life if it isn’t a little wild? An example of this is seen in little boys on their bikes. For the first couple of years, they are contented to pedal and master the art of balancing themselves while their bike….biking? at full speed. (English maestros help me out. Is that the proper word there?) Once they have learned the balancing act, before you know it, they are biking without any hands on the handle bars. For some reason, this is a peculiarity that males often have. If things are too calm and normal, we do something to rough it up. That said, there is one thing that men will not mess with….Mother Nature at her wildest.
From earthquakes that happen miles below the surface of the earth to the force and violence of a volcano erupting and spewing it’s red-hot lava fury heavenward, from towering tsunamis and twisting tornadoes, or the howling rage of a Category 5 hurricane and the thundering majesty of a mid-summer thunderstorm, nature, uncontrolled and untamed, leaves us breathless and standing in awe of a Creator who can with a word either create or abate such displays of power. But God is more than just a thundering superpower. He is a Being who exalts and delights in beauty. This day that is illustrated here is a example of both.
Last eruption was in 1869. When seen from the right angle, this volcano has a almost perfectly conical shape. At this link here, the photos are better. But, since we were only staying in this area for about 5 days, the weather being overcast for the whole duration of our stay, we were satisfied with this view. We set out on Monday to hike this peak but as it’s peak is right around 8,700 feet, we didn’t ascend all the way to the top. But we did go about half way up.
The Chilean flag set against the backdrop of the mountain.
This is a little broken down shack that is used for a shelter. It was a welcomed wind break and also the spot of our picnic lunch. Yep, on a volcano, in the snow and in about 50 degrees.
This was a hoot! Some of us hike along the edge of the volcano and we would come across these big snow cliffs. The first time, I wasn’t too sure. After all, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to be walking in wet clothes for the remainder of the day but after our 2 guides, one in his upper forties, the other about 55, jumped over the edge and slid to the bottom, there was no way my manly pride would allow them to do something that I shrank (slightly) from. After all, there could be unknown rocks that could inflict unknown damages upon bodies but we all survived. This cliff here was about 30 feet tall. Later we came across one that was closer to 100 feet in altitude. Again, that was a hoot!! I doubt I’ll ever do something like that again…sliding on a volcanic snow cliff.