Thursday, December 6, 2012
Isle Hornos...The End of the World
If you've seen this, then you've probably actually been there. This is the Cape Horn Monument. It's at Cape Horn, the end of the world.
Now, why would anyone want to go there? I don't know. I've often wondered why anyone would want to go to Disney World. Then again, I like the unusual. That's what this is, unusual. This is one of those things that goes on a bucket list and waits for you to get the nerve up to try it. It's not a death defying trip. It just could be a waste of money.
Here's the problem. Cape Horn can be a little inhospitable. It sits south of glaciers, beyond the end of the Andes, within spitting distance of Antarctica, and it's coast has one of the worst currents in the world. All things considered, I'm surprised that anyone's gone there at all. But, if you hit it on a good weather day, you'll get to be one of the few that have a picture of that monument, and you'll get that amazing feeling that you've been to the end of the world.
Now, I won't lie to you. Victory Adventure Expeditions is one of the few companies that will take you there and attempt to get you on land. They are a safe, well priced, comfortable way to see this unique place. They take you on a three or four day cruise that goes through the Magellan Strait, and stops to see some of the Tierra Del Fuego National Park and some of the local Glaciers. They operate out of Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world.
Ushuaia is nestled at the foot of the Andes in Argentina. The National Park of Tierra Del Fuego straddles Argentina and Chile in this area and Ushuaia sits right in the middle of it. This colorful city is the starting and ending point for most excursions in the area.
One of the unique things to do in addition to traveling to Cape Horn is to take the Prisoners Train or the Train to the End of the World. This is a ride available with stunning scenery just outside of Ushuaia. The area used to be known as a huge and dangerous prison camp, before the turn of the last century. Now that everything pretty much has gone to tourism, the prison is all but a museum and the train is a tourist trip. It only takes a few hours to take this amazing ride through the national park to see the amazing scenery. This is the southernmost train in the world.
Everything in this area is the southernmost in the world. That's why you come here.
Sea lions, Magellanic Penguins, glaciers, and Magellanic Forests are some of the things that you will see in the area and in the national park. There are many things here that are distinctive. There are many things here that are memorable.
Remember, there's nothing near it. The only thing nearby is Cape Horn. So, if you want to see something that is unusual. If you want to go somewhere off the beaten path away from the crowds, this is your spot. How many people do you know that can say that they've stood at the end of the world?
Isle Hornos is a place that doesn't like company. No road goes there, and you won't either unless the weather is good enough.
If you've seen this, then God has given you a truly special look at the world.
Captain Jack has been to the end of the world, how about you?